2021 Nissan Murano
We believe that some vehicles need another chance for your consideration. That is why we were surprised that the Nissan Murano has not leaped off dealership lots in droves, while many of its competitors are hard to get.
For the past several years, the Nissan Murano occupied a space that has garnered a lot of competition of late. The Murano has always stood out in the crowd among mid-size, two-row SUVs with its sharp, edgy looks that seem commonplace today.
We wondered why there are plenty of Muranos on the lot. To find out, we went to work with a 2021 Platinum model to see for ourselves.
The truth is that the Nissan Murano has always been a polarizing vehicle. It offers contemporary design with its floating roof design, deep scalloping, shaping, and the use of chrome accents. The doors open wide with huge step-ins for all passengers. The tailgate opens up high and wide as well.
In this Platinum trim, the use of chrome is tastefully done as set within the shapes of the body. To finish off this luxurious look, the Murano wore a set of 20-inch dark finished alloy wheels.
This theme carries over into a high quality interior that is simply top-notch. This Platinum model in Mocha leather offers a mix of quilted upholstery and wood-like finishes all around. The cabin is well laid-out for optimal room for five along with a focused driver’s cockpit.
The front seats are comfortable, but they lack bolstering. There are plenty of adjustments for the right seating position. The second row seats are also equally comfortable.
A wide information screen dominates the instrument binnacle between two main dials. The graphics are great with a clear readout for trip, economy, and vehicle functions. Controls are great and tactile to work with. The center stack has an air of excellence with its large touchscreen and excellent climate controls. New to us is the addition of a USB-C port alongside a USB-A one.
Cargo space was large with 31.1 cubic feet available behind the second row. Fold down the second row seats to expand up to 65.0 cubic feet overall.
Under the hood is Nissan’s 3.5-liter with 260 horsepower available. It is connected to Nissan’s Xtronic continuously variable transmission with the available all-wheel-drive. In all, this a fine driveline that you can count on. You can ease the throttle for passing maneuvers and going up on-ramps without any hesitation.
In terms of fuel economy, the Murano with all-wheel-drive is rated by the Environmental Protection Agency at 20 MPG in the city; 28 MPG on the highway.
The ride quality is smooth. Rougher roads were managed quite well with absorbent shocks and suspension systems. While we experience some soft handling feel, the Murano was poised when it needed to be, even though we found that the Murano exhibited minimal lean and roll through the turns and maneuvers
On-center feel of the steering was also on the soft side. Turning and steering action was on point with precise turns accomplished without fail. Brakes were fine with solid stops observed in normal and panic situations. We liked the solid pedal feel for managing stops.
For enhanced safety, Nissan added their Safety Shield 360 suite of driver assist technologies to the Murano. Features included in this suite are Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning, High Beam Assist and Rear Automatic Braking.
The 2021 Nissan Murano lineup starts with the S model with front-wheel drive, starting from $32,810. Our Platinum tester with all-wheel drive came in with a sticker price of $48,635.
The venerable Nissan Murano has been a stalwart in the mid-size, two-row SUV space for almost two decades. However, it still attracts a crowd for consumers to choose from. Those competitors include the Chevrolet Blazer, Hyundai Santa Fe, Honda Passport, Ford Edge, Toyota Venza, Kia Sorento, Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee.
In all, the Nissan Murano remains relevant for consumers looking for a mid-size, two-row SUV with the practicality they want today. It is a vehicle worth looking at now, as there are a sizeable number in inventory as we speak. Right now is a good time to give the Murano a chance to become your next family vehicle.
Story Credits: CarSoup Editors