Nissan is finally killing another one of its love-it-or-hate it models, the Murano CrossCabriolet.
The Murano CrossCab is gone from the automaker's U.S. lineup for the 2015 model year.
From the start, the CrossCab was a bold move, an attempt to make a convertible crossover SUV. But the result looks rather, um, odd. When it was introduced in 2011, we compared it to other unlikely combinations, like mules, bacon-flavored ice cream and Frisbee golf.
The CrossCab, a high-riding vehicle that with the top down was compared to a bathtub on wheels, was aimed at upscale empty nesters. The initial starting price was $47,000, though it has since been dropped to around $42,000. Nissan has said that those who bought the CrossCab loved it. There just weren't many of them.
The CrossCab didn't fail to catch on from lack of trying. Nissan engineers poured a lot of effort into the CrossCab to make sure that it would maintain body rigidity with the top down. The extra components added 400 pounds. And it was not the only Nissan model that caught the attention of critics because of its strange looks. Nissan also just killed its Nissan Cube, which had styling that has been compared to a melting ice cube, but retains its strong selling Juke crossover.
Nissan officials won't be getting misty eyed about their outgoing convertible. They are busy launching the new Murano crossover as one of their most important new vehicles, taking it even more upscale. They want it to be elegant, not odd.
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AWD and/or SUV-based convertibles have traditionally been a hard sell, and have not done well (the ill-fated Suzuki X90, for you who remember it, is another good example). That's because convertibles, in general (soft-top models more so than retractible hardtops), are designed primarily for fair-weather driving...not the kind of conditions where AWD would usually come into play. In addition, convertibles, in general, have more body/cowl flex than other types of vehicles, which can be a detriment when off-roading. Even Audi Quattro sedan-based cabriolets have not done particularly well.
I myself am of the belief that there's nothing necessarily wrong with a vehicle that can adapt to both sunny and wintry conditions as needed, but the general market hasn't always seen it that way.
This car was "Huh?" from the day it was announced. Who was the genius who thought it up in the first place? They should have laughed that person out of the boardroom that very moment because this thing should never have been.
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I forgot they even made that convert murano. I see a lot of convertibles around me yet that is one that i have NEVER seen anyone drive. Im not surprised it being phased out having only sold less than <6,000 units world wide in its 3-4 years of production. I think the nissan cube even sold more than that selling 23,000 units in 2010 just in North America alone. More impressive than I thought