2018 Nissan Murano vs Honda CR-V

The Nissan Murano has changed for 2018. For starters, the center console has been redesigned to hold more. On top of that, navigation, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and 8-inch touchscreen are now standard. On the safety front for 2018, the Murano’s features have trickled down. The Nissan now comes standard with automated emergency braking and forward-collision warning. Lots of trims have new goodies, like a power-operated rear liftgate on the SL and Platinum trims. Finally, there’s a panoramic sunroof on the Platinum. With all these changes, we’re comparing the refreshed Murano up against the Honda CR-V to see how they compare in 2018.

Technology: 2018 Nissan Murano

This is where the 2018 Murano really shines. Nissan has packed their mid-size SUV with the good stuff, captained by the NissanConnect infotainment system. Standard features, in addition to those mentioned the the opening paragraph, include SiriusXM with Travel Link weather and traffic updates. There are two USB ports, including one for backseat passengers. If you opt for it, you can get a WiFi hotspot. And, while the touch screen isn’t the most responsive out there, it performs well for its class.

On the other hand, the HondaLink infotainment system on the Honda CR-V can be frustrating. They added a rotary knob, but that’s a duct tape solution to a system that needs an overhaul. Luckily, there’s Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth, and SiriusXM satellite radio. Then again, there’s no WiFi hotspot available on any trim level.

Acceleration: 2018 Nissan Murano

The best engine on the Nissan Murano is a sporty 260-horsepower 3.5L V6. It can be paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and all-wheel drive. When put to the test, this engine can go zero to 60 in just 7.3 seconds and go a quarter-mile in just 15.7 seconds. That’s the kind of raw power that reminds you of the roots of today’s sport utility vehicles.

The Honda CR-V offers a 190-horsepower 1.5L inline-four engine. Like the Murano, the CR-V also comes with a CVT with AWD. In a street race, the CR-V will come in last in this matchup. It goes zero to 60 in 7.6 seconds and does a quarter-mile in 16 seconds flat. That’s not a huge difference, but given the Murano’s other advantages, inferior acceleration doesn’t help the CR-V’s standings.

Safety: 2018 Honda CR-V

The other major improvement this year from the Nissan Murano is its new standard safety features. To be sure, the Murano is a safe car, though the Nissan could have scored higher in its crash test ratings. The all-wheel drive version is safer, since the front-wheel drive model only received four stars in its NHTSA rating while the AWD scored a perfect five. The Murano narrowly missed a Top Safety Pick distinction with a Marginal headlamp test, which measures headlight visibility. Then again, its active safety features are abundant and often standard in 2018.

The Honda CR-V earned high marks for its crash test ratings. Five stars from NHTSA and all Good marks from IIHS, netting the CR-V a Top Safety Pick Plus distinction. The Honda also has plenty of active safety features, including the Safety Sensing Suite giving you collision-mitigation braking, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and lane-keeping assist. Unfortunately, almost all of these safety features are locked away on upper trims. Still, even with the Murano’s improvements on the safety front, the Honda CR-V is safer still.

Despite being slightly safer, the Murano has more technology and better driving. This Nissan also has plenty of active safety features from the get-go. We’re calling this one for the Nissan Murano, a great SUV that just got better.