$20,431 - $29,283

2018 Nissan Murano Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2018 Nissan Murano was new.


Performance: 7.9

The 2018 Nissan Murano may not be the most thrilling SUV to drive, but its excellent fuel economy, adequate engine power, and smooth, composed handling make it a great commuter car. Still, cornering too quickly will show that this SUV is not as sporty as many rivals.

  • "… it's the way this midsize SUV rides and handles that sealed the deal with our editors. From its precise steering to its assured brakes to the ease in which it would get up and go at just the slightest throttle input, the Murano fulfills the promise made by its seductive outer skin." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)
  • "Mostly, the Murano is at home just swallowing up miles on the interstate, and we suspect most car buyers will find its laidback personality easy to like." -- Edmunds (2016)
  • "The ride is very quiet, handling is confident but not sporty and the 3.5-liter V6 is perfectly matched to the continuously variable transmission (CVT)." -- Autotrader (2015)

Acceleration and Power

A 260-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine paired with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) powers the 2018 Murano. This Nissan gets EPA estimates of up to 21 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway, which is exceptional for the class.

This isn't an SUV that'll throw you back in your seat when you accelerate, but the V6 has plenty of power for most driving situations. The CVT is one of the better CVTs on the market and is usually unnoticeable as it transfers the engine's power to the wheels. Under heavy acceleration, however, it can become rather noisy.

  • "Nissan's ubiquitous 3.5-liter V6 supplies an abundance of torque and delivers effortless acceleration. Ordinarily, the CVT masks its stretchy nature but when you're climbing a hill or in a hurry to jump on a highway ramp, it lets the engine rev in an unpleasant way." -- Consumer Reports
  • "It's not going to feel like a firecracker off the line, but the power is nicely metered-out by the CVT, and while I'm generally not a fan of ever-spinning continuously variable units, Nissan continues to have one of the best setups out there." -- Autoblog (2015)
  • "Although the power rating is hardly impressive for a 3.5-liter engine today, it's certainly adequate for the Murano, which lost 146 power-sapping (and fuel-sucking) pounds in the redesign." -- Consumer Guide (2015)

Handling and Braking

The Murano's ride is stable when making turns at normal speeds, but it's less composed when cornering quickly. The power steering is not very precise, and there's little feedback through the wheel. A wide turning radius can make maneuvering in tight spaces challenging. Still, the Murano offers a comfortable ride, unless it's equipped with the optional 20-inch wheels, which make the ride bouncier. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional.

  • "The Murano's handling is mundane, performing adequately in undemanding situations and lacking athleticism when pushed. The car is willing enough to change direction, but its overly light and numb steering take away from confidence and driving enjoyment. Its broad, 40-plus foot turning circle doesn't help with maneuverability, either." -- Consumer Reports
  • "The ride is luxurious in the 2016 Nissan Murano, although the large 20-inch wheels on the Platinum trim make for a choppy experience when driving on poorly maintained roads. While the Murano doesn't necessarily embarrass itself around turns, body roll is more noticeable and steering responses are slower than in other crossovers." -- Edmunds (2016)
  • "Corners aren't really the Murano's forte, but it held its own when pushed. Brake feel was solid, with linear pedal feel. The steering was light, but there was enough feedback through the wheel to let me know what the front tires were doing." -- Autoblog (2015)

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