Nissan has an extensive line of SUVs, and the Rogue and Murano are its two most popular. In fact, the Rogue is their best-selling vehicle in North America.
The Rogue is slightly smaller and cheaper, whereas the Murano is bigger and more luxurious. But that’s not all there is to it. Let’s take a closer look!
The Nissan Murano is bigger than the Nissan Rogue and comes with more standard features, but the Nissan Rogue received a more recent overhaul.
Compact Crossover SUV vs Midsize SUV
While these two Nissan SUV models might appear similar to the untrained eye, the Rogue is a compact crossover which competes with the likes of the Honda CR V and Toyota RAV4, whereas the larger Murano is a midsize SUV which competes with the likes of the Chevrolet Blazer and Ford Edge.
Compact Crossovers are traditionally seen as more nimble and practical for inner city driving, whereas Midsize SUVs offer more luxury and power.
As a result, the first question to ask yourself is what kind of vehicle you’re looking for. Do you want to go with a more fuel efficient vehicle which is still rugged and good for some off-roading, or spend more on a larger, more capable vehicle?
The Rogue is the cheaper of the two, with the base 2019 Rogue S starting at $25,020 MSRP whereas the base 2019 Murano S starts at $31,370 MSRP (excluding destination charges).
The Nissan rogue maintains its rather conservative design for 2020, with fairly standard headlamp and tail light styling.
By contrast, the Nissan Murano has a bolder, eye-catching design with headlights that stretch back to the A-pillar and a more streamlined silhouette.
Design is always subjective, but personally we’re a much bigger fan of the Murano’s more inspired design that wouldn’t look out of place coming out of a Lexus factory.
Comparing size, the Murano is the bigger of the two, measuring 192.4 inches long versus the Rogue’s 184.5 inches. It’s also around three inches wider and an inch taller, although the Rogue offers slightly more ground clearance compared to the Nissan Murano.
The Nissan Rogue and Nissan Murano are both two row SUVs that can seat up to five people.
Despite being the smaller crossover, the Rogue actually boasts over an inch more legroom for the front seats. There’s also more headroom for passengers in the back.
Meanwhile the Nissan Murano offers more rear seat legroom and has wider seats in both rows. However, the
For cargo capacity, the Nissan Rogue offers more cargo space with 39.3 cu.ft. when the rear seats upright, or a rather generous 70.0 cu.ft. when the rear seats are put down. By comparison, the Nissan Murano offers 32.1 cu.ft. and 67.0 cu.ft. of cargo volume respectively. Again, the Rogue goes against the common assumption that a compact crossover can’t load as much cargo as a midsize SUV.
While the Nissan rogue makes clever use of its space to leave more room for cargo, the Murano’s interior feels more luxurious. Instead of the simple black plastics that line the Rogue’s interior, you get plusher materials with wood grain trims and aluminum accents that add a classy touch.
The Murano also gets more luxury features like zero gravity seating designed to reduce fatigue on longer journeys and an impressive 10-way power driver’s seat with lumbar support.
Of course, the Rogue’s interior quality does ultimately depend on the trim you choose, and going for the Platinum Reserve interior package will give you nice leather-appointed seats with quilted leather inserts.
Being the more expensive model, the Murano comes with more interior features unless you option your Rogue or go for a higher end trim. The Nissan Murano Platinum comes with things like adaptive cruise control and an auto-dimming rearview mirror, whereas the Rogue does not.
However, even the cheaper Rogue trims are generously-equipped for their price. A 7-inch touch screen infotainment with full Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility come as standard. Other features often missing from base trims in comparable compact crossovers such as blind spot monitoring and a rear view camera, also come as standard with the Rogue.
Although both the Rogue and Murano include hill start assist and an Xtronic CVT® as standard, the engine selection differs across the two models.
The Nissan Rogue offers two powertrains – traditional and hybrid. Going with the traditional powertrain, the Rogue has a 2.5-liter DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine that produces 170 horsepower and 175 lb.-ft. of torque. This makes it capable of towing up to 1,102 lbs.
The Murano is only available with a 3.5L DOHC V6 gas engine. This more powerful engine can produce 260 horsepower and 240 lb.-ft. of torque that gives it a maximum towing capacity of 1,500 lbs. Despite being the heavier vehicle, the Murano is still accelerates quicker than the Rogue thanks to the more capable engine.
Both compact SUV models can engage sport mode to boost power and responsiveness.
Those anticipating some soft off-roading or wintry conditions will want to consider the intelligent all-wheel drive (AWD) versions of the Rogue/Murano. By default, they come with a front wheel drive configuration.
As you would expect from a smaller car, the Rogue offers superior fuel efficiency, capable of 29 mpg in combined highway and city driving. However, within the midsize class the Murano offers relatively good fuel efficiency with 24 mpg in combined driving.
Both Nissans offer good safety for both the driver and passengers. However, the 2019 Nissan Murano is one of the top-rated SUVs for safety according to NHTSA, earning a 5-star safety rating overall and across all individual crash tests. The Rogue didn’t fare as well, earning a 4-star overall rating .
Looking at IIHS tests, both vehicles scored the highest scores in crashworthiness tests.
From the 2019 model and beyond, both the Nissan Rogue and Murano offer a good number of safety assistance features. This includes forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking, pedestrian detection and more.
They also offer options for intelligent driver-assists such as adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning and monitoring, automatic high beams, lane-keep assist and rear cross-traffic alert.
Looking at the most recent JD Power scores for the 2018 models, both scored 9/10 for overall quality which and 10/10 for mechanical quality . Nissan SUVs are generally considered fairly reliable, and Nissan offer a 3-year/36,000-mile basic and a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty which is fairly standard within the automotive industry.
Nissan offer two good crossover/SUV options with the Rogue and Murano. The Rogue is their best-selling vehicle in the U.S. and has gained a solid reputation for being affordable, reliable and practical . However, as the Crossover segment becomes more crowded with competition, the Nissan Rogue lags behind the likes of the Mazda CX-5 and Honda CR-V which are considered to be the best available options right now.
The Nissan Murano is better suited for those looking for a more luxurious experience and an engine that delivers more oomph. The Murano represents good value for money within the midsize SUV segment, and it’s aggressive styling definitely makes it more interesting than the Rogue’s uninspired looks.
If you’re still deciding on which Nissan crossover is for you, we highly recommend a visit to your nearest Nissan dealership for a test drive.