It looks like Nissan isn’t ready to give up on its personal-luxury-sporty-but-practical crossover just yet. A spy photographers near Metro Detroit snapped these shots of the next-generation Nissan Murano out and about on public roads, albeit wearing heavy camouflage. As buyers shift more toward off-road-inspired utility vehicles, models like the Nissan Murano and its most direct rival, the Ford Edge, find themselves in an increasingly unpopular segment of the market. The Murano has fallen from a sales peak of nearly 87,000 units in 2016 to just over 30,000 last year. While we can’t tell too much from these spy shots, and regardless of its current market position, it doesn’t look like Nissan will be altering the Murano formula too much as it readies this round of updates.
The next Murano is expected to stay atop the same D-platform underpinnings that it’s rode atop since it was last updated in 2015 (yes, that makes it a Jurassically old in automotive terms), shared with the Nissan Pathfinder and various Infiniti crossover models. The bodywork appears to have heavy refinishing work with a more streamlined V-shaped grille up front along with potentially shrunk-down lighting elements front and rear. The profile continues with its teardrop-shaped sloping roofline, and the rear up-kick remains intact underneath all that camo covering.
Perhaps the best update Nissan could bless Murano buyers with is an automatic transmission with actual defined ratios instead of the current model’s continuously variable unit. Our guess is the nine-speed gearbox from the Pathfinder could be used in the Murano to good effect. We wouldn’t expect any other major powertrains and figure the V6 engine option will probably carry over. We don’t know when this new Murano is going to hit the market, but with the 2024 already showing up on Nissan’s website, we’d guess it would be held until the 2025 model year.