There's nothing else on the road like the Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet, though that exclusivity is both a strength and a weakness. On the one hand, Nissan's willingness to put a distinctive, unique product out for sale means it's more likely to come up in conversation. The problem with a limited-production niche model, luxurious and individualistic as it may be, is actually getting people to purchase it. Roll in the devastating earthquake that struck Japan in May when Nissan was in the earliest days of Murano CrossCabriolet production, and you wind up with a supply shortage that coincides with a vehicle launch – a bad problem to have.

Murano sales are down, and even though CrossCabriolet sales aren't broken out from the rest of the line, we suspect the model hasn't caught fire in the marketplace to the degree Nissan wants it to. A price drop from $46,390 to $44,540 for 2012 Murano CrossCabriolet models will help sweeten the deal for buyers seeking a two-door four-place crossover vehicle with a power-folding top and plenty of luxury accoutrements, but the price change isn't necessarily what it seems. Navigation moves from standard equipment to an available stand-alone option, suggesting that the $1,850 price dip is the result of decontenting. That said, as it's based on the top-trim Murano LE, there's not much for CrossCabriolet buyers to want for (although if they were yearning for Pearl White paint, that's a new addition for 2012). Chart the changes for the entire Murano range in the official Nissan press release after the jump.


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2012 Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet Press Kit: Overview

– Bold Expression of Nissan's Commitment to Design and Innovation Combines Open-Air Driving Experience with the Practicality of a Stylish All-Wheel Drive Crossover –

As the world's first all-wheel drive crossover convertible, the Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet broke new ground in both the crossover SUV and convertible segments when it was introduced in spring 2011. With its never seen before design and custom boutique style, the Murano CrossCabriolet is unlike anything on the road – blending all of the things people love in a crossover with the open air enjoyment of a convertible. Its extraordinarily engineered fully automatic cloth convertible top folds to about the size of a 2-seat roadster top, providing ample room for four adults and plenty of cargo space with the top up or down. For the 2012 model year, the advanced Nissan Hard Drive Navigation System is now available as a standalone option and one new exterior color, Pearl White, has been added.

"The Murano CrossCabriolet represents not just a new car but also a new genre, breaking ground as the world's first all-wheel drive crossover convertible – with the ability to make everyday activities more exciting," said Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division, Nissan North America, Inc. "And, with its extraordinarily engineered convertible top, standard all-wheel drive and room for four adults plus cargo, the CrossCabriolet is not just for cruising South Beach or Malibu. It's a vehicle to take to lunch, running errands or on a long ski weekend in any part of the country."

Murano CrossCabriolet Design Concept
The all-new Murano CrossCabriolet is designed to overcome the traditional functional limitations of a convertible – limited trunk space, a cramped back seat or none at all, and a lack of flexibility for everyday life.

It overcomes these obstacles, combining elegant design and state-of-the-art engineering. One of the priorities in the convertible top design was the retention of the traditional Murano silhouette with the top up, and a luxurious, sophisticated appearance with the top down.

The transformation of the Murano body from Crossover to CrossCabriolet and from 4-door to 2-door meant more than just removing the top. Along with creating new front doors (7.9 inches longer than 4-door Murano front doors) and eliminating the B-pillars, the structure has been reinforced from the A-pillar rearward. The cloth convertible top also includes a rear glass skylight, helping create the feeling of a wide-open interior environment even with the top in the closed position. Dual Pop-up Roll Bars are also standard. The coefficient of drag remains close to that of the hardtop Murano, just 0.39 Cd versus 0.37 Cd.

One of the keys to the CrossCabriolet's design's success is the convertible top's exceptionally compact size when stowed, which allows both additional interior and cargo volume (normally taken up by a traditional convertible stowage design). The hydraulically operated top mechanism includes an automatic power latch/unlatch system. Operation switches are located on the center console and driver's door handle. With the top down, the stowed size is similar to that of a conventional 2-seat roadster. Trunk capacity with the top down is 7.6 cubic feet, enough to fit two sets of professional golf clubs or two carry-on suitcases. With the top closed, cargo capacity expands to 12.3 cubic feet.

Along with the unique convertible top appearance, the Murano CrossCabriolet exterior also includes High Intensity Discharge (HID) bi-functional xenon projector headlights with auto on/off function, front fog lights and Nissan 370Z-inspired LED taillights. Other features include body-colored front and rear bumpers, chrome door handles, body-colored dual power/heated outside mirrors, and rear window defroster with timer. Along with convertible style, the CrossCabriolet offers the high ground clearance of a Murano for easy ingress and egress.

Six exterior colors are available: unique Murano CrossCabriolet colors Sunset Bronze and Caribbean, plus Merlot, Platinum Graphite, Super Black and new Pearl White.

A Highly Rewarding Interior
The luxurious Murano CrossCabriolet interior starts with a foundation of the top-of-the-line Murano LE and takes it to the next level of standard features and convenience items. The tall windshield and A-pillar design combines with the body's high beltline and high rear seat shoulders to help reduce conventional interior air turbulence with the top down, allowing conversation between occupants.

Premium materials are used throughout the interior, with the standard diagonally quilted leather- appointed seats available in premium double-stitched leather for added elegance. The interior's curving, sculpted lines, half-matte chromed trim finish and unique wood-tone trim, tuned to match each of three available interior colors, add an additional rich, quality feel. Interior colors include Black, Cashmere (light brown) and Camel (brown).

The Murano CrossCabriolet comes fully equipped, with a long list of standard features including 8-way power heated driver's seat with power lumbar support, 4-way manual heated front passenger seat with easy entry function, heated steering wheel, 2-position driver's seat memory system for seat, steering wheel and outside mirrors, passenger seat easy entry release button on instrument panel for driver access, driver and front passenger seatback pocket, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and Nissan Intelligent Key™ with Push Button Ignition.

Every 2012 Murano CrossCabriolet is also available with standard Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System, HomeLink® Universal Transceiver and RearView Monitor, and an optional Nissan Hard-Drive Navigation System with XM NavTraffic® with Real-Time Traffic Information, XM NavWeather™ (XM® subscription required, sold separately), Bluetooth® Streaming Audio, Voice Recognition and 7-inch VGA touch screen.

Open-air road tunes are provided by a Bose® AM/FM/CD audio system with 8 speakers including subwoofer, automatic audio adjustment for soft-top up/down position, integrated Interface System for iPod®, speed-sensitive volume control and auxiliary audio input jack. XM® Satellite Radio (XM® subscription requires, sold separately) is also standard.

Under the Skin: Pure Murano
The 2012 Murano CrossCabriolet's drivetrain is shared with the all-wheel drive hardtop Murano, starting with the proven "D" platform (also utilized on Maxima and Altima sedans) and standard 3.5-liter 24-valve DOHC V6 producing 265 horsepower and 248 lb-ft of torque. The engine design includes the Nissan variable Induction Control System (NICS), twin knock sensors, low exhaust pressure, a 10.3:1 compression ratio, and 6,600 rpm redline. Estimated fuel economy is 17 mpg City/22 mpg Highway.

The engine is mated to a standard second-generation Xtronic CVT™ with Adaptive Shift Control (ASC) for sporty response and smoothness, which utilizes an advanced, sport-tuned controller with adaptive logic for driving comfort or driving performance as conditions require. The advanced all-wheel drive system uses information from yaw sensors, wheel slip sensors and steering angle sensors to distribute torque according to driving conditions.

The Murano CrossCabriolet's lightweight 4-wheel independent suspension features MacPherson struts in front, a multi-link rear design, cradle-type front subframe and front and rear stabilizer bars. Also utilized are dual-flow path shock absorbers for responsiveness and reduced ride harshness.

Steering is provided by a twin-orifice vehicle-speed-sensitive power-assisted steering system, while the braking system includes 4-wheel vented disc brakes with Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Brake Assist (BA) and Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD). Every CrossCabriolet comes with 20-inch split 5-spoke titanium finish aluminum-alloy wheels with P235/55R20 Toyo Proxes A20 all-season tires.

Standard Murano CrossCabriolet safety features include the Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and an occupant classification sensor, front seat side-impact supplemental air bags, and door-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags with rollover sensor, along with front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters, Zone Body Construction with front and rear crumple zones.

Other standard equipment includes front seat Active Head Restraints, Tire Pressure Monitor System (TPMS), Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC), Traction Control System (TCS) and Dual Pop-up Roll Bars for rear passengers.

One Fully Equipped All-Wheel Drive Model
The 2012 Murano CrossCabriolet is offered in one fully equipped model. Along with the many items previously mentioned, standard features include power front windows with one-touch up/down and auto-reverse feature, Dual-Zone Automatic Temperature Control, and a 7-inch color display for audio, climate control, fuel economy, maintenance and comfort and convenience systems.

Also included are highly functional storage systems, including a two-tier center console storage box with fold-out function, cell phone holder, dual seatback pockets, Fine Vision gauges and driver instrumentation with white backlighting, illuminated steering wheel controls, auto door lock feature, four cupholders, power tilting and telescoping steering column, auto-dimming rearview mirror, cruise control with illuminated steering wheel mounted switches, front door map pockets, and Remote Keyless Entry (RKE) system.

Two options are available with specific exterior colors – a Camel interior with upgraded leather and the black top, and the Brown top/Cashmere interior combination (with upgraded leather). In addition, the Nissan Navigation System is now offered as a standalone option.