The Nissan Murano was one of the originators of the original crossover segment, debuting as a 2003 model. Although today we take for granted that the majority of SUVs sold now are unibody, front-drive models that share a lot of their hardware with cars, at the time, many SUVs were still truck-based, or even if they were car-based, had conspicuously boxy, truckish styling. The Murano bucked that trend with a radically sleek, rounded style that set the stage for many other crossover models to come. The third-generation 2015 Nissan Murano builds on the model's historical strengths, with an accentuated emphasis on style, convenience and technology.

Cutting-edge styling has always been one of the Murano's trademarks, and the 2015 model continues the tradition with Nissan's new signature "V-Motion" front-end styling, boomerang-shaped headlights and taillights, and a lower, longer, wider stance. Optional on the 2015 model is full-LED headlights, with LED taillights as standard equipment. Overall, Nissan is claiming a 16-percent improvement in aerodynamics for a claimed drag coefficient of just 0.31.

On the inside, the 2015 Murano gets a larger optional panoramic moonroof, with a 29-percent larger opening and a 40-percent larger sliding length. Based on feedback from current Murano owners, the dashboard height was deliberately kept low for enhanced forward visibility and a feeling of openness. While more technologically advanced than ever, simplicity was a key design directive in the interior, with the number of audio and navigation switches and buttons reduced from 25 to just 10.

Available features on the Murano include heated and cooled front seats, steering wheel, driver's seat and outside mirror memory settings, remote start, and dual-zone intelligent climate control. Safety features such as an around-view monitor, moving object detection, forward emergency braking and intelligent cruise control are also available.

The powertrain at launch remains Nissan's proven 3.5-liter VQ35DE V-6 engine and CVT automatic transmission, rated at 260 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque. Due to enhancements to aerodynamics, powertrain calibration, and an estimated 130-pound lighter weight, fuel economy ratings are predicted to improve as much as 20 percent over the second-generation Murano.

The 2015 Murano will be offered in S, SV, SL and Platinum trims, and will be available with front- or all-wheel-drive drivetrains. The 2015 Nissan Murano will reach showrooms this fall.

Source: Nissan