Used Nissan Murano review: 2005-2015
January 18, 2017
- Spacious seating
- Reasonably quiet
- Smooth drive
- Not as sporty as it looks
- CVT won't suit everyone
Ewan Kenned reviews the 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 Nissan Murano as a used buy.
And now for something completely different … the Nissan Murano SUV. Often tagged as the 'space ship' because of its futuristic shape, Murano was aimed at those families who wanted to look outside the box in their transport.
Frankly, the Murano didn't do particularly well the sales race in Australia, probably because ours is a conservative market and out of the ordinary designs seldom succeed. There are some on the used-car market at pretty reasonable prices.
Nissan Murano is a very useable vehicle with stretch-out room for four adults. Three grownups in the back works fine if they aren't overly large. The full-flat floor at the rear seats makes life easier than usual for the person seated in the centre spot. Too often they have to sit with their legs splayed around a central tunnel, but not in the big Nissan.
The second generation Murano, introduced here in January 2009, carried the same overall theme as the original shape. However, it sat on a new platform that gave it added rigidity and an even quieter ride. Seating was even more spacious and the boot gained significantly more volume. The 3.5 V6 was reworked to give it more power and torque. Its excellent smoothness continued to impress.
The gen-two has an emphasis on a luxury look and feel, making it a complete move away from the sort-of sporty appearance of the first-generation.
The first Muranos arrived downunder in September 2005. The gained some positive acceptance by experts and some potential buyers because they were powered by the well-regarded 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine used by many upmarket Nissans. This gave plenty of performance and made Murano quicker, smoother and more refined than most others in this class with four-cylinder power.
Nissan was one of the pioneers in modern day CVT automatics. In the gen-two it has pre-selected ratios to give the driver a fair degree of manual control when the don't agree with the computer's decisions on the best ratios.
Murano is a complex car.
The European-based suspension system provides handling characteristics that are pleasant enough, but the Murano is certainly no sports wagon and may disappoint drivers who anticipate more from its sleek appearance.
Nissan has been in Australia since the Datsun days of the 1960s and there are many well established dealers throughout the country. Naturally these are mainly in metro areas, but the strong commercial vehicle ranges means there are also plenty in the country.
Murano is a complex car and anything other than basic service items are best left to professional mechanics.
It comes as no surprise that insurance premiums are usually in the same range as other standard SUVs, not in the sporting variants. Meaning they are pretty reasonable, there doesn't see to a huge variation from company to company.
What to look for
Check servicing and maintenance has been carried out according to the book.
Nissan sets different recommendations for standard and heavy duty work. If you think a Murano has been used in very hot areas, or used for towing make sure it has been given the heavy-duty service program.
Look for oil leaks from engine, CVT, and transfer-case joints.
Check the complete interior for signs of damage caused by crazed kids.
Also look at the luggage area in case things have been sliding about and scarring the carpets and sides.
Make sure the engine starts easily and idles almost imperceptibly from the moment it's running. Ideally this should be done after the engine is completely cold, overnight is best.