A silver 2019 GMC Terrain drives off with a win comparing 2019 GMC Terrain vs 2019 Nissan Rogue

Road Warriors: 2019 GMC Terrain vs 2019 Nissan Rogue


Small SUVs are a great choice for folks who are new to SUVs or who need something they can easily fit into their life. One of the biggest concerns a lot of people interested in an SUV for the first time have is that the large size of the vehicle will be hard to control or fit into a garage/driveway/neighbor’s front yard. That’s what makes a smaller SUV a great option, but choosing the right one can be tricky. So let’s pick two and make them fight it out to see what they’ve got – it’s the 2019 GMC Terrain vs 2019 Nissan Rogue battle for supremacy!

Now, anyone who’s ever shopped for a vehicle knows there are a lot of options and available features to sort through. With different configurations and trim levels to choose from, comparing these two vehicles could take us the rest of this geological age. We’ll keep things simple and just look at overall options and available features rather than trying to go point by point and make every possible direct comparison. In other words: some of these things will require spending a little more money to choose a particular trim level or package, so keep that in mind.

Duel of the Engines

When looking at the engines of the 2019 GMC Terrain and the 2019 Nissan Rogue, we have an interesting situation. Most of the time, this is a straight-up brawl where I can compare basic numbers like capacity, horsepower, and torque and make a quantitative comparison to see which is better. In this case, however, the fight is less straightforward because these two vehicles come to fight with different weapons (so to speak).

You see, there are three different engines available for the 2019 GMC Terrain, which starts off with a 1.5L Turbo 4-cylinder engine that offers up to 170hp and 203 lb.-ft. of torque. That’s pretty good, but there is also an available 1.6L Turbo-Diesel 4-cylinder engine that gives you up to 137hp and 240 lb.-ft. of torque. So if you need to do some hauling, then the improved torque of the turbo-diesel is hard to argue with. Finally, there is an available 2.0L Turbo 4-cylinder engine that provides up to 252hp and 260 lb.-ft. of torque for the best performance overall.

On the other side of this battle, the 2019 Nissan Rogue has a single standard engine available, which is a 2.5L DOHC 4-cylinder engine that provides up to 170hp and 175 lb.-ft. of torque. So as you can see, this is pretty comparable to the standard engine in the GMC Terrain, though it has less torque, but nowhere near as powerful as the best engine you can get in the Terrain.

But here’s where things get tricky. You can get the 2019 Nissan Rogue with a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine with an electric motor for a hybrid experience, which offers up to 141hp and 144 lb.-ft. of torque. Yes, that is a lot less power than any of the Terrain engines, but it is a hybrid engine, which is not at all available on the GMC model. So, if you want power, then the 2019 GMC Terrain is the clear winner, but if you want a small SUV with a hybrid engine, then the 2019 Nissan Rogue is the way to go.

Interior Space Battle

Interior room and cargo capacity are not the sexiest of specs for a vehicle, I know that. But it’s important, especially when you are looking at a small SUV. You want a small SUV to fit into your life, but you don’t want to miss out on one of the best features of any SUV: the ability to cram a bunch of stuff inside it to make your life easier.

Both of these vehicles fit 5 passengers and the 2019 GMC Terrain has 63.3 cu. ft. of volume behind the first row, and 29.6 cu. ft. of volume behind the second row. There is nearly 41 inches of leg room in the front, so everyone can fit inside and have plenty of space to be comfortable. It’s also worth noting when we’re talking about cargo and storage that the Terrain has a maximum towing capacity of 3,500 lbs. in case you have a camper or trailer you want to haul.

By comparison, the 2019 Nissan Rogue has up to 61.4 cu. ft. of volume available behind the first row and 27.3 cu. ft. of storage space behind the second row. You can see that’s a bit less than what you get with the GMC Terrain. It is worth noting, however, that the hybrid version of the Rogue has more cargo capacity than the Terrain, so keep that in mind. The 2019 Nissan Rogue has a maximum towing capacity of 1,102 lbs. – that’s less than 1/3 of what you can pull behind the Terrain.

The fully folded cabin of a 2019 GMC Terrain for maximum cargo

Fuel Economy Carnage

The 2019 GMC Terrain gets pretty solid gas mileage for an SUV, which is one of the perks of choosing a smaller model. You get an estimated 26mpg in the city and 30mpg on the highway with the Terrain, assuming you stick with the standard 1.5L engine. But how does that compare to the Nissan Rogue?

Well, this is one area where the Rogue truly shines, especially if you pick a model with the hybrid engine. The standard engine estimated fuel economy with front-wheel drive for the 2019 Nissan Rogue is 26mpg in the city and 33mpg on the highway. That’s pretty close to what you get with the Terrain, though slightly better on the highway.

On the other hand, a Rogue with the hybrid engine gets an estimated 33mpg in the city and 35mpg on the highway. That is certainly better gas mileage, but of course the engine is also much less powerful than what you can get in the GMC Terrain.

Safety Feature Throwdown

Keep in mind, not all of these features are standard at every trim level for these vehicles, but represent the available suite of options. The 2019 GMC Terrain is available with some very impressive features such as StabiliTrak and hill descent control, a safety alert seat, and rear cross traffic alert. You can also get lane change alert with side blind zone warning, rear park assist, an HD rear vision camera, and a teen driver system to help new drivers learn safe habits.

The 2019 Nissan Rogue also has a number of excellent safety features including vehicle dynamic control and traction control, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and rear automatic braking. It includes a blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, and intelligent lane intervention. You won’t find the teen driver system with the Rogue, however, nor does it have a safety alert seat that vibrates to warn you about dangers around you.

The Takeaway

So, at the end of the day who wins this battle? As you would expect, these are both excellent vehicles, but the 2019 GMC Terrain wins in a few key areas. If you are interested in a small SUV that doesn’t sacrifice power and can haul a few thousand pounds behind it, then the Terrain is definitely the best choice. It also includes some safety features you won’t find from other makers, such as the teen driver system, which is perfect if you have young drivers just starting to learn behind the wheel. The biggest advantage of the 2019 Nissan Rogue is the option for a hybrid engine, but if you’re not interested in that, then the Terrain drives away with the belt.