The market is saturated with SUVs of all types, from off-roaders, like the Toyota 4 Runner, to luxury SUVs, like the Porsche Macan. But, there is another category. The Premium SUV category offers a combination of unique styling, decent amount of features, and a high level of comfort, which isn’t always discussed. Here, we show that the Murano outshines its rival, the Durango, due to three significant advantages.
Let’s look at what sets Nissan’s model apart from Dodge’s SUV offering.
1. Inexpensive price
According to Car and Driver, the Murano comes with four different trims, while the Durango has several. For the base trim S of the Nissan, the price begins at $34,605 after destination fees, and it goes all the way up to $46,155 for the top level model, the Platinum.
Dodge’s base, the SXT, begins at $40,090 and goes up to a starting MSRP of $57,790 for the R/T Plus, one of the highest trims available. However, the fourth trim, the R/T, begins at $53,190. This is still about $7,000 more than the Murano’s equivalent.
Dodge also has two sportier models of the Durango, the SRT, with a 6.4-liter Hemi, and SRT Hellcat, which are significantly more money than the R/T Plus model ($71,890/$84,000).
2. Better fuel economy ratings
The Murano only comes with the 3.5-liter V6 engine, paired with a continuously variable transmission. It offers 295 hp and allows you to go from 0 to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds, which isn’t much to get excited about, but its fuel economy ratings are.
When it comes to city driving, you can expect about 20 mpg, but when you get out on the highway, it gets an estimated 28 mpg for the front-wheel drive version. The optional all-wheel drivetrain isn’t supposed to reduce those figures. Car and Driver report that the site’s testing managed 27 mpg on the highway, but it’s still pretty close to EPA’s estimates.
Dodge’s Durango has a couple of engines to choose from. You get a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 295 hp and can go 0 to 60 mph in 7.4 seconds. If you’re looking for something with a bit more power, you can choose the 5.7-liter V8 that can generate 360 hp and gets a 6.2-second acceleration time.
Fuel efficiency isn’t as good as the Murano, though. The V6 version is estimated to get 19 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway. The V8 model offers 14 mpg for city driving and 22 mpg when traveling on the highway. However, Car and Driver reported they managed 23 mpg in its tests.
3. Less curb weight
The Nissan Murano is a two-row crossover that has a curb weight of 3,865 lbs when you choose the front-wheel drivetrain, according to Edmund’s. With AWD added, it goes up to 4,009 lbs. Dodge’s Durango is quite a bit heavier, though. For FWD, you can expect 4,750 lbs, while the all-wheel drivetrain weighs 4,884 lbs. The V8 model adds almost 500 lbs to the SUV.
Dodge’s Durango model is a three-row family crossover that’s actually marketed as having a decent towing capacity. It’s estimated to haul approximately 8,700 lbs with the V8 model, which is probably why the vehicle weighs quite a bit more. If you’re not looking to haul anything but passengers and some cargo, the Murano is lighter, and that means better fuel economy.
Both SUVs offer their own unique stamp to the market, but the Murano has just a little bit more to appeal to consumers. Unless, of course, you’re looking for more power and towing capabilities. In that case, the Durango is the choice to make.