2019 Nissan Murano vs. 2019 Volvo V90

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Murano are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The V90 doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Murano (except S/SV) offers optional Rear Automatic Braking which use rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The V90 doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

Both the Murano and the V90 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front and rear 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, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available all-wheel drive, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Murano the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 139 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The V90 has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

Nissan’s powertrain warranty covers the Murano 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Volvo covers the V90. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the V90 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 4 times as many Nissan dealers as there are Volvo dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Murano’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Murano third among midsize suvs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The V90 isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Nissan vehicles are better in initial quality than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Nissan 10th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 37 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 29th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Nissan 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 29 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 22nd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Nissan 15 places higher in reliability than Volvo.

Engine

The Murano’s 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 10 more horsepower (260 vs. 250) than the V90 T5’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Nissan Murano uses regular unleaded gasoline. The V90 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Murano has 4.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the V90 FWD’s standard fuel tank (19 vs. 14.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Murano has 3.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the V90 AWD’s standard fuel tank (19 vs. 15.9 gallons).

Transmission

The Murano has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The V90 doesn’t offer a CVT.

Tires and Wheels

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 V90 doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

The front and rear suspension of the Murano uses coil springs for better ride, handling and control than the V90, which uses transverse leafs springs in the rear. Coil springs compress more progressively and offer more suspension travel for a smoother ride with less bottoming out.

For greater off-road capability the Murano has a greater minimum ground clearance than the V90 (6.9 vs. 6 inches), allowing the Murano to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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 V90 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The Murano has 10.1 cubic feet more passenger volume than the V90 (108.1 vs. 98).

The Murano has 2.1 inches more front headroom, 2 inches more front shoulder room, 2.1 inches more rear headroom, 2.8 inches more rear legroom and 3 inches more rear shoulder room than the V90.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Murano’s rear seats recline. The V90’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The Murano has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the V90 with its rear seat up (32.1 vs. 25.5 cubic feet). The Murano has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the V90 with its rear seat folded (67 vs. 53.9 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

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 V90 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Murano has standard extendable sun visors. The V90 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Murano owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Murano will cost $3475 to $6880 less than the V90 over a five-year period.

The Murano will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Murano will retain 41.28% to 43.8% of its original price after five years, while the V90 only retains 38.69% to 39.61%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Nissan Murano will be $21115 to $21423 less than for the Volvo V90.

Recommendations

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

The Nissan Murano outsold the Volvo 90 Series by over seven to one during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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