Performance » 6
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PERFORMANCE | 6 out of 10
“above average for its class”
Car and Driver
“plenty of power”
“smooth, consistent and very strong”
The 2010 Nissan Murano isn't a performance machine, nor is it completely comfort-oriented. But thanks to its city-slick style and a gutsy yet very refined powertrain, the Murano manages to pull off that compromise in a way that will please almost everyone.
Under the hood of the 2010 Murano is a familiar engine, shared across Nissan's entire car lineup. Edmunds.com proclaims “the 3.5-liter V6 provides plenty of power for almost all situations.” Car and Driver says, “The engine makes a subdued growl under hard acceleration, but the noise goes largely AWOL at part-throttle while cruising down the highway.” It's matched with a CVT automatic that functions especially well in the Murano. Car and Driver records a 0-60 mph time of 7.2 seconds for the Murano—“above average for its class.”
AutoWeek is pleasantly surprised with the Murano’s transmission: “Normally we bemoan CVTs, but Nissan's unit impresses with its fluid operation and adaptive shift control that does a good job of simulating stepped gears.” Automobile Magazine confirms that “power delivery is smooth, consistent, and very strong.” TheCarConnection.com's editors would prefer a manumatic setting during some sportier driving, with simulated gears, like in the Nissan Maxima. MyRide agrees, saying that they "longed for more deliberate response when the throttle was pinned to the floor, and would welcome a sport or manual-shift mode.” Car and Driver also comments that "the lack of a manumatic controller is a hint that these vehicles are more likely to make school runs than carve mountain roads."
TheCarConnection.com achieves 21 mpg in mostly city driving in a Murano, which we feel is a feat in such a heavy vehicle with a large V-6. But Autoblog is “disappointed with the car's preliminary EPA numbers. Surely more than 18 mpg can be squeezed out of a CVT,” while MyRide observes fuel economy of “about 19 mpg.” The official ratings for the Murano are 18 mpg city, 23 highway, while Ford’s front-drive Edge gets 16/24 mpg and the Mazda CX-7 achieves 17/23 mpg.
The 2010 Nissan Murano doesn't handle with any high-performance edge, but it strikes a good compromise between comfort and responsiveness. Automobile Magazine indicates the Murano “has decent body control, but it can feel a bit floaty.” But the brakes are “strong” and ride quality is “fine.” “It hardly drives as sportingly as the CX-7, but it feels much lighter on its feet than the Edge,” according to Car and Driver. AutoWeek says, “Expressway runs are stable and quiet, while in-town motoring is comfortable and well dampened over rough goings,” and praises its braking and steering feel. ConsumerGuide observes “the ride is well controlled and is abrupt only on sharp potholes and badly broken pavement.”
Refinement and straight-line acceleration take precedence over edgy handling prowess in the 2010 Nissan Murano.