Crossover & Midsize

Avoid the 2004 Nissan Murano at All Costs

If you’re looking at getting a 2004 Murano, stop. This model year has the most complaints across almost every single category. The top three complaints are transmission failure (costing $2,900 and occurring at about 98,000 miles), broken door handle (costing $100 and occurring at about 83,000 miles), and engine failure due to faulty catalytic convertor (costing $5,800 and occurring at about 105,000 miles).

There’s not enough room in this article to detail them all, but here’s a few to get you started on why you should avoid this Murano model. To do this, we looked at CarComplaints.com and decided to divide the list into exterior and interior (focusing on body/paint and accessories) and engine (focusing on engine, transmission, and electrical) problems.

2004 Murano exterior and interior problems

Body/paint

The biggest complaint in this category on Car Complaints was the broken door handle. This wasn’t the only problem. Other users reported that there was extreme rust on the undercarriage and chrome peeled off the grille. According to the NHTSA, there were multiple complaints and shortcomings found in the 2004 Murano.

Accessories

The biggest complaint here was that the sun visor broke. Other users said the seat frame broke. It was also reported that the power locks would get stuck intermittently or would start locking randomly without being touched. The brake and battery lights randomly came on, according to some reports, or the console buttons fell off. For the NHTSA, the most complaints were about the seats.

2004 Murano engine problems

RELATED: Does the 2020 Honda Passport Have Enough to Beat the Nissan Murano?

Engine

There were complaints of excessive oil consumption and oil leaking. Another significant problem was the cracked manifold and loss of acceleration. Some users reported that the car died while idling or while driving. The most complaints by the NHTSA were in relation to the engine, vehicle speed control, and engine coding.

Transmission

The top complaint here was transmission failure. As with the remarks in the problems with the engine section, acceleration consistency was noted here as well. Other complaints were slipping gears. The biggest problem for the NHTSA was in relation to the power train.

Electrical

For customers, the biggest problem was the alternator. Other consumers said the battery leaked. Another major problem was that there were multiple electrical issues at once. A unique issue was that rodents ate the soy based wire insulation.

2020 Murano

Kelley Blue Book shows an expert rating of 4.1 of 5 stars and consumer rating of 4.6 of 5 stars. In this vehicle, Nissan offers a standard V6 engine. Even better for many consumers, it rides more like a sedan and is fuel efficient. The seats are comfortable and the general attitude of this vehicle is refined and of premium quality. However, you can only get it with a CVT transmission. You also can only tow up to 1,500 pounds (ca. 680 kg). There is less cargo space and fewer standard safety systems, which could be problematic for some consumers.

While this car has some issues, there is a vast improvement from other models, especially the 2004 model, allowing the Murano to redeem itself. However, many still remember the issues that fell under the 2004 model, there is still wariness associated with this model. At the same time, the improvements made have been solid enough to improve the perspective on the model.

Just because the 2004 Murano isn’t a good option doesn’t mean that other models should suffer the same demise. In fact, there has been much improvement in the Murano and consumers are taking note of the differences. The 2020 Murano model has a lot going for it and has vastly improved from the 2004 disaster.