Childre Nissan Compares 2017 Nissan Murano VS 2017 Toyota Rav4 Near Warner Robins, GA

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2017 Nissan Murano

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2017 Toyota Rav4

Safety Comparison

The Murano SL/Platinum’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Rav4 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Murano and the Rav4 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Nissan Murano is safer than the Toyota Rav4:







5 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Stress

292 lbs.

505 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

226/341 lbs.

502/540 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Nissan Murano is safer than the Toyota Rav4:





Front Seat


5 Stars

5 Stars




Abdominal Force

162 G’s

163 G’s

Hip Force

354 lbs.

381 lbs.


Rear Seat


5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

38 G’s

54 G’s

Hip Force

330 lbs.

400 lbs.


Into Pole


5 Stars

5 Stars




Hip Force

681 lbs.

724 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Murano third among midsize suvs in their 2016 Initial Quality Study. The Rav4 isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine Comparison

The Murano’s 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 84 more horsepower (260 vs. 176) and 68 lbs.-ft. more torque (240 vs. 172) than the Rav4’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Nissan Murano is faster than the Toyota Rav4:




Zero to 60 MPH

7.4 sec

9.3 sec

Quarter Mile

15.6 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

91.8 MPH

82.3 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The Murano has 3.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Rav4 (19 vs. 15.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Murano’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Rav4:



Rav4 LE

Rav4 XLE/Limited

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

10.8 inches

11.7 inches

Rear Rotors

12.1 inches

11.2 inches

11.2 inches

The Murano’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Rav4 are solid, not vented.

The Murano stops much shorter than the Rav4:





60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

128 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Murano has larger tires than the Rav4 (235/65R18 vs. 225/65R17).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Murano has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Rav4 LE/XLE. The Murano Platinum’s 20-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the Rav4 Limited/Platinum.

The Murano has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Rav4 doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Murano has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Rav4 doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Murano’s wheelbase is 6.5 inches longer than on the Rav4 (111.2 inches vs. 104.7 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Murano is 3 inches wider in the front and 3 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Rav4.

The Murano Platinum AWD handles at .82 G’s, while the Rav4 XLE pulls only .75 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Murano Platinum AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.2 seconds quicker than the Rav4 XLE (27.8 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 29 seconds @ .57 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the Murano has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Rav4 (6.9 vs. 6.1 inches), allowing the Murano to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis Comparison

The front grille of the Murano uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Rav4 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Murano has 6.2 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Rav4 (108.1 vs. 101.9).

The Murano has .1 inches more front headroom, 1.1 inches more front hip room, 2.2 inches more front shoulder room, .9 inches more rear headroom, 1.5 inches more rear legroom, 6.3 inches more rear hip room and 3.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the Rav4.

The front step up height for the Murano is 2.7 inches lower than the Rav4 (15.8” vs. 18.5”). The Murano’s rear step up height is 2.7 inches lower than the Rav4’s (15.1” vs. 17.8”).

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Murano’s cargo area is larger than the Rav4’s in almost every dimension:




Length to seat (2nd/1st)



Max Width



Min Width



Pressing a switch automatically raises the Murano Platinum’s rear seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Rav4 doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the Murano. The Rav4 doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Murano offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Rav4 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Murano SL/Platinum’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Rav4 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Murano’s front power windows open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Rav4’s power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.

If the front windows are left down on the Murano the driver can raise them using the key in the outside lock cylinder. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from outside the vehicle using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote. The driver of the Rav4 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Murano S’ standard variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The Rav4 LE’s standard fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent. The Murano SV/SL/Platinum’s standard wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Rav4 XLE/SE/Limited’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Murano’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Rav4’s power mirror controls are on the dash, hidden behind the steering wheel, where they are awkward to manipulate.

When the Murano SL/Platinum is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Rav4’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Both the Murano and the Rav4 offer available heated front seats. The Murano Platinum also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Rav4.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Murano Platinum keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Rav4 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

The Murano has a standard dual zone air-conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air-conditioning is only available on the Rav4 XLE/Limited/Platinum.

Both the Murano and the Rav4 offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Murano has standard rear air-conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Rav4 doesn’t offer rear air-conditioning vents, only heat vents.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Murano is less expensive to operate than the Rav4 because it costs $261 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Murano than the Rav4, including $383 less for an alternator, $12 less for a starter, $167 less for a fuel pump and $739 less for a timing belt/chain.

Recommendations Comparison

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Nissan Murano and the Toyota Rav4, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Murano is ranked first in its class and received the 2015 “Total Quality Award.” The Rav4 is not ranked.

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