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2005 Nissan Murano Mid-Size Crossover Sport Utility Vehicle

Description: Mid-Size Crossover Sport Utility Vehicle
Base MSRP Range: $27,000 - $31,050
Invoice Price Range: $24,829 - $28,554
Where built: Japan

With stylish exterior shapes and a comfortable cabin that accommodates five, mid-size Murano is a fun-to-drive wagon that looks like a SUV but behaves more like a sports car. It rides on the front-wheel-drive (FWD) chassis of a car. Pushing wheels to edges of the chassis brings stability to the stance and enhances Murano's agility when cornering.

Murano offers high-tech hardware such as vehicle dynamic control (VDC) with a traction control system (TCS) and Nissan's all-wheel-drive (AWD) equipment for dependable grip on slippery pavement. The AWD system normally operates in FWD mode, although if front treads begin to slip, this smart rig can divert as much as half of the engine's muscle to run the wheels in back.

For locomotion Murano pulls from a juicy dual-cam 3.5-liter V6. Output reaches to 245-hp through an advanced CVT that Nissan calls Xtronic.

The cabin layout pitches a pair of bolstered buckets in front flanking a large console with covered recesses to stow gear as large as a purse or laptop computer. On the second row a bench is designed to seat two comfortably but hold three. Seatback splits and reclines or folds down to expand the cargo area.