Midsize SUV; Built in Japan
  • 2-door convertible
  • 4-door wagon
  • transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $8,900 – $36,900*

2009 Nissan Murano Front

2009 Nissan Murano Rear

2009 Nissan Murano Interior

2009 Nissan Murano Profile

  • Passenger and cargo room
  • Wind noise

The redesigned-for-2009 Murano is a likable SUV that has retained that model’s secure handling, comfortable interior, cargo utility, and strong, refined powertrain. Midsize SUV shoppers would be wise to add it to their test-drive list. Resale values of lower-end models (S and SL) have been on the high side, keeping used-car prices somewhat hefty.


Nissan’s midsize sport-utility vehicle, again offered with front-wheel or all-wheel drive, was redesigned for 2009, after one season’s absence from the market. Called “all-new” in its second generation, the 2009 Murano moved upscale, according to Nissan. Seating five, the Murano was based on Nissan’s “D” platform, which was shared with the recently-redesigned midsize Altima sedan. Three models went on sale: S, SL, and top-of-the-line LE. Each used a 265-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine and an Xtronic continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). A 245-hp V6 had served in Murano’s prior generation. S and SL models could have front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive; LE was AWD-only. Murano’s AWD system lacked a low-range gear for off-roading. Maximum towing capacity was 3500 pounds. Standard safety features included antilock brakes, traction control, an antiskid system, front side airbags, and curtain side airbags. Heated front and rear seats were available, as were a navigation system and backseat DVD entertainment. LE models included 20-inch wheels, xenon headlamps, a rearview camera, leather upholstery, and keyless entry/starting. A new dual-panel moonroof and a power liftgate also were offered, and 20-inch wheels were available for the first time. Rivals included the Ford Edge, Mazda CX-7, and Toyota Venza, as well as the Lexus RX 350 and Honda Pilot.

Yearly Updates

2010 Murano
Except for the addition of a front-drive LE model for 2010, little changed for the Murano. Keyless access and engine start now was standard on all models, the S edition gained privacy glass, and the SE added roof rails. A dual-panel moonroof became standard on the LE edition. Voice-activated navigation with real-time traffic information and a Music Box hard drive for storing digital-music files was optional on SL and LE models.
2011 Murano
The 2011 Nissan Murano lineup gained a new trim level, the SV, as well as a convertible body style called the CrossCabriolet.
2012 Murano
The 2012 Nissan Murano had only minor trim changes.
2013 Murano
For 2013, the Murano wagon received new “Safety Shield” features as optional equipment, and some standard and optional equipment was shuffled among trim levels. There was also a new Value Package for SV models and two new exterior colors.
2014 Murano
Changes for the 2014 Murano were few, so the big news was that the Tinted Bronze exterior color could now be had with a black interior in addition to the previously available biege. The 2014 CrossCabriolet model debuted in early 2013, and as before was only offered in one trim level.


transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive

Each Murano holds a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 265 horsepower, teamed with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and either front-drive or all-wheel drive.

dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.5/214
Engine HP 265
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 248
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
CVT automatic



Road Test

Acceleration is a notable bonus. One of the quicker six-cylinder midsize SUVs, Murano has few peers for smooth throttle response around town and through hilly terrain. Credit Nissan’s CVT, which seamlessly transfers power without the gear-selection dithers or downshift delays of some conventional automatic transmissions. In highway-speed passing situations, the CVT brings engine revs up faster for more power, benefiting acceleration.

Fuel economy scores around average for midsize SUVs. Test AWD Muranos have averaged 16.0 mpg in mostly city driving and 21.7 mpg with more highway use. A Murano averaged 19.9 mpg in mixed city/highway driving. Nissan recommends premium-grade gasoline.

The ride is well-controlled, abrupt only over sharp potholes and badly broken pavement. Murano is reassuringly stable in highway-speed cruising. There’s little discernible difference in ride quality among the Murano models.

Testers have been divided in their opinions of Murano steering feel. Some cited accurate response, but others found it too light in any situation. Overall balance is just okay, as models tested have felt wallowy and ponderous in even light-duty cornering. Brakes offer sure stopping control with good pedal feel.

Quietness is a mixed virtue. Other than in full-throttle acceleration, the engine is quite subdued. Road noise is fairly well controlled, with the LEs being the quietest models. Wind-noise suppression has not been uniform in all test models, but the convertible model suffers from considerably more wind and road noise.

Most controls are easy to reach and use, but a few switches are mounted on a shelf under the center stack and in front of the console. Audio and trip-computer readouts display on a single dashtop screen, removed by several inches from those systems’ actual controls. Gauges have amber lighting and can be hard to read in bright conditions, even while wearing sunglasses. That’s also true for the available navigation system’s screen. That navigation system is easy to use, and most audio and climate functions are separate. Cabin assembly quality is good. Abundant soft and padded surfaces add to the overall quality feel. Aluminum trim on the console and dash add upscale appeal. Though fake, the LE’s woodgrain accents lend warmth and a more upscale ambiance; the convertible is similar.

Front seats provide large-adult room and comfort, but the wide seatbacks could use more side bolstering, as the available leather seats can be slippery in turns. Six-footers have good headroom, even with the optional sunroof. Murano’s standard tilt/telescopic steering wheel aids in finding a comfortable driving position; it’s power-operated on the LE, but other models use an inconvenient two-lever configuration. There’s a nicely elevated field of vision to the front and sides, and the large mirrors aid lane changes. Upswept rear roof pillars and a smallish rear window cut into the view astern, particularly in the convertible. Low step-in height eases entry and exit.

Back-seat riders get great legroom and foot space. Headroom is ample, too, on nicely padded, chair-height seats. Three adults are a bit squeezed, but the flat floor helps the middle passenger. The CrossCabriolet convertible seats only 2 passengers in the rear seat, though headroom and legroom are adequate for those under 6 feet. Modest ground clearance means no-hassle entry and exit through wide doors, front and rear.

Cargo space scores highly. Murano features a flat passage from the rear bumper into the cargo bay, though the rakish roofline cuts into cargo volume with rear seatbacks up. Still, there’s no need to remove headrests to drop the 60/40 split rear seatbacks, which fold nearly flat via levers from the rear. SL and LE have a standard power-return feature, operated by a button near the hatch. A multi-section cargo organizer-standard on LE-easily deploys from the floor to help keep small items from rolling around the cargo hold. The CrossCabriolet’s trunk is divided into two sections, with the upper space used for the top. It’s a T-shape and is fairly shallow while the top is down. Interior storage includes a large glovebox, a twin-bin console, seat back pockets, and small door pockets.


Model Tested: 2010 Nissan Murano SL w/AWD

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.


Acceleration - 6
Fuel Economy - 5
Ride Quality - 6
Steering/Handling - 5
Quietness - 6


Controls/Materials - 6
Room/Comfort Front - 7
Room/Comfort Rear - 7
Cargo Room - 8


Value - 7

Total: 63


2-door convertible
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
111.2 190.1 74.5 66.2
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
NA 21.7 4
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
NA NA 43.6 36.3
4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
111.2 188.5 74.1 67.0
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
64.0 21.7 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
40.1 39.4 43.6 36.3
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2012 Murano CrossCabriolet not tested 2-door convertible


(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
Front Passenger Injury - N/A

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A


(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Fuel gauge
Description: The fuel gauge may not register as full after refueling due to a faulty fuel-level sender. (2009-10)
Description: The sunroof shade(s) may be hard to open or may not open fully, requiring installation of an improved shade. (2009)
Tire wear
Description: The transmitter nut for the tire pressure monitoring system tends to corrode, especially where salt is used on roads, and the company issued a voluntary recall to replace the nuts. (2009)
Vehicle noise
Description: Knocking noises from the rear on AWD vehicles may be due to a faulty electric coupler assembly for the rear driveshaft. (2003-10)
Vehicle noise
Description: The steering tilt/telescopic feature may be noisy or may quit working, requiring a replacement motor. (2009)
Electrical problem
Description: The rear view monitor may not work when backing up, requiring replacement of a relay and a revised bracket. (2009)
Navigation system
Description: The radio may not scroll through the presets on vehicles equipped with the navigation system or the navigation screen may freeze, requiring software upgrade. (2009)

Recall History

2009 Murano
Description: On certain models sold or registered in specified states, material in nut used to secure the sensor-transmitter of tire-pressure monitor may corrode and potentially crack in areas with heavy concentrations of road salt; nut could come out, and indicator lamp would illuminate, as tire quickly loses air pressure at a consistent rate.
2009 Murano
Description: Due to incorrect software programming, airbag control unit may cause passenger airbag not to operate as designed if vehicle battery becomes significantly discharged.
2009 Murano w/occupant classification system
Description: Varistor in passenger seat cushion may be out of specification; under certain conditions, could cause interruption of signal, resulting in failure of airbag to provide adequate protection in a crash.
2012 Murano
Description: Tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) was not activated during assembly.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.


Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.

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