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Nissan seems to be stumbling from one crisis to another. The dramatic escape from Japan by Carlos Ghosn, its former CEO, was just the tip of the iceberg. In recent years, the automaker has faced criticism for braking problems on the Nissan Murano. The most notable incident concerns broken brakes that led to a 2018 Nissan Murano owner losing consciousness. 

Before these complaints came to light, Edmunds had touted the 2018 Murano as a stylish crossover that offers value for money. This begs the question, are the 2018 Murano service brakes complaints unfounded? And, is the car a lemon as far as its braking system is concerned?

Failing brakes and a smoke-filled cabin in the 2018 Nissan Murano

Brakes are arguably the most essential safety feature in a car. In the case of the driver who lost consciousness while driving a rental model of the 2018 Nissan Murano, smoke suddenly filled the cabin, and the pedal felt hot when braking. This happened without warning and caused the driver to lose visibility, smashing into another vehicle before crashing into a tree. 

That isn’t the only serious complaint raised about the 2018 Murano’s faulty service brakes. When driving on straight, smooth, and good roads on normal conditions at 40-50 mph, some drivers complain – as sourced through the NHTSA and Car Complaints – that they had to floor the pedal for the Murano’s brakes to start working. Indeed, this can be calamitous when driving faster or in wet conditions. 

Does the 2018 Nissan Murano have brake problems?

Nissan touts the Automatic Emergency Braking system and Rear Automatic Braking systems as some of the notable safety features on the Murano. Nonetheless, if complaints by the vehicle’s drivers are anything to go by, these features fail the test. 

A consumer review on revealed that the 2018 Nissan Murano’s front radar constantly malfunctions. The radar helps with cruise control and braking. Drivers have complained that when driving while the cruise control is set, the control panel keeps beeping, and “front radar unavailable due to obstruction” flashes on the screen. 

This disables cruise control and causes the vehicle to decelerate sharply, thus putting the driver at the risk of a rear collision. The problem recurs every 10-15 minutes, and whenever it happens, it takes up to five minutes for a driver to use cruise control again. Worse still, there’s no fix for the problem, and neither can it be disabled.  

There has also been a complaint about the 2018 Murano’s brakes going hard while driving. This not only makes it difficult to decelerate but causes the radio and center screen to go off. When you experience this issue, you might think it’s caused by a faulty sensor. However, that’s not the case because the problem is caused by a design defect by Nissan.

The Murano’s brake fluid also easily leaks into the ABS circuits, thus causing fires. Perhaps, this might have been the issue that filled a Murano’s cabin with smoke and caused its driver to lose consciousness. 

Nissan’s laxity with recalls 

Whenever there’s a recall campaign concerning defective systems or parts on a vehicle, owners should ideally park their cars and have the defects fixed. In the case of the 2018 Murano, Nissan doesn’t have the parts needed to fix the braking system’s defects. Effectively, this means the automaker wants Nissan Murano drivers to keep driving cars with defective braking systems as it finds a way to fix it. 

Final thoughts

The 2018 Nissan Murano is displayed at the 2017 LA Auto Show
The 2018 Nissan Murano | FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images

How Reliable Is the Nissan Murano?

Losing your brakes when driving on a busy highway or in not-so-good conditions is downright dangerous. For some 2018 Nissan Murano owners, this is a reality they face every day. Unfortunately, the automaker’s ongoing problems and laxity with recalls mean there’s no end in sight.