Nissan Murano ST 2005 Review
The word "gear" is deliberately chosen: the Murano features a continuously variable transmission (CVT). And it has a development of Nissan's All Mode 4x4 system plus a vehicle dynamic control (DVC) to help avoid slips and slides, and keep the family wagon on track. Nissan pitches the Murano as a crossover vehicle where passenger car-like comfort, handling and performance are priorities (Nissan has the Pathfinder and Patrol for more serious 4WD users).
The Murano has 180mm ground clearance, an approach angle of 28 degrees and departure angle of 25 degrees, and can tow up to 1500kg.
The CVT is a computer-controlled "stepless" transmission giving an infinite number of gear ratios. CVT has two pulleys connected by a steel belt. Hydraulic cylinders infinitely vary the working diameters of the pulleys to give the differing gearing.
Nissan says a long uphill drive in an orthodox automatic often is accompanied by downshifts.
With CVT engine revs stay constant as the transmission itself adjusts.
On the Murano, the CVT has M Mode, a sequential manual override operated by a central gear selector should the driver want to manually select from the six nominated ratios.
The All Mode 4x4 system is developed from the Pathfinder.
In the Auto setting, the Murano runs in front-wheel drive until wheel spin is detected and a clutch is triggered sending torque to the rear axle.
If the Murano is taken off road, the system can be switched to Lock which permanently locks the chassis into 4WD, with torque split 50-50 front and rear.
This is held until 30km/h, above which it reverts to Auto mode.
Z car engine
NISSAN Murano gets the 3.5-litre V6 also used in the 350Z sports car. In Murano the DOHC, 24-valve unit is tuned for 172kW of power at 5000rpm and 318Nm of torque at 3600rpm.
Ends in a Ti
THE ST Murano, from $51,990, has xenon lights with washers, rear spoiler, BOSE six-speaker sound system, six-stack CD, climate control, cruise control, leather-clad steering wheel, power windows, 18in alloys and cargo blind. The luxury Ti, from $56,990, adds leather trim, heated front seats, electric sunroof and rear parking sensor.
FOR Muranos in Australia, Nissan installs driver and front passenger, curtain and front side-impact airbags. The vehicle dynamic stability control detects understeer and oversteer, and intervenes by braking of individual wheels, engaging AWD or cutting engine torque.
Range and Specs
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