Nissan produces some pretty rocking cars, the GTR R35, 350Z, Silvia among many others. But one of the cars you probably didn’t know about is the Nissan Murano. What is a Nissan Murano, I hear you ask? A Nissan Murano is like the cool uncle to the 350z or the sensible brother to the GTR.
If you want to know more about what a Nissan Murano is and what makes it, well, actually pretty cool for a cross over car, then carry on reading. We will try to go over some of the main key points like the engine, the fact they were released as a crossover and a Cabriolet.
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The Nissan Murano was designed as a family crossover car with a bit of a twist. Released in 2003 and running onto present day (although not all models were released in the UK) they have produced 3 generations, including a convertible, which wasn’t as popular as they hoped it to be.
Unfortunately, we didn’t get all the generations and it seems there weren’t a lot of sales over here, probably because what the UK wanted during the time of the sales was economic and family crossovers. The Murano ticked one of these boxes, it was just a tad too thirsty.
What didn’t help the fuel economy of these cars was their AWD option and the fact they run on a CVT gearbox with a 350Z heart pumping fuel around its veins, it was bound to be a wrong combination for the UK market.
The Murano was also a performance car under that sensible family oriented body. It had a 3.5 V6 under the hood that produces a whopping 235bhp but only returned a tiddly 18 – 23 mpg. So to answer this question, the Murano is a thirsty, family car with the heart of a 350Z and the looks of a Juke (only with a bigger boot).
The UK luckily missed out on the ugliest version of the Murano. For some unknown reason, crossovers and SUVs seemed to hit this weird time when they needed to produce a convertible and for me, a convertible should be sleek, sporty and stylish, not big and clunky.
For some reason, Nissan trialed it, ran the cross cabriolet for 3 years then ditched it as a failure just as they released their best looking Murano to date. Their generation 3 Murano never made it to the UK market and has been run on overseas to this present day.
So as far as the UK are with the Murano, we’ve had 2 generations, skipped the convertible and generation 3, but I guess we have the Juke Nismo, the 350z and 370z to keep us happy.
What really makes the Murano cool is the engine, the fact that it’s spacious, comfortable and comes with a bag of specs, like sat nav, leather seats, electronic stability control and a BOSE sound system. They come with a lot of toys and are a good drive, especially for what you can pay for a used one right now.
Really it’s the engine, it’s the 3.5 V6 that makes this car super cool, it’s got the same rasp as a 350z with it only being slightly down tuned. With a bit of modifying, you could have a big daddy 350z to compromise for you and your partner.
They don’t even look that bad, with a good set of lowering springs or coilovers, add some wide fenders and some big old Forgiato wheels and they can look pretty bad ass. Definitely a car that was underrated and was cooler than it was perceived, or is that just the family man / boy racer coming out in me.
There’s not many of these machines in the UK, if you’re after one, you’ll have to get scouring Autotrader and eBay because the ones that were sold from new are either scrapped by now, sold for parts (like the engine) or just being held onto in the hopes of appreciation.
At this moment in time on Autotrader in the UK there are only 27 for sale, with prices ranging between £2,000 and £7,000, meaning they are highly affordable and you do get a lot for your money.
The only thing that might put you off buying a Murano is the running costs, but if expensive tax, insurance and 20mpg doesn’t put you off and you just love the sound of a V6 crossover that has lots of gadgets and room, go for it, you could be onto a winner.
Are you in that time of life where you need a bigger car with the compromise of a sweet V6 with a beautiful exhaust note? Think could be the affordable car you’ve been looking for that you didn’t know existed. You can find these on Autotrader or eBay for a very respectable price.
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Thanks for reading
Founder of Boost And Camber