15th November 2010, 10:08
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| | Nissan Murano cross-cabriolet revealed
Pics and article from leftlanenews
Crossovers and convertibles might not seem to go together, but Nissan is hoping it can create a new niche. Ahead of its debut later this week in Los Angeles, the Japanese automaker’s has released an image of its CrossCabriolet concept. |
From the one preview image shown so far, we see that the formerly four-door crossover now offers just two large front doors, a unique beltline and 370Z-inspired tail lamps. For more details, we’ll have to wait until the official debut.
To its benefit, Nissan seems to understand that the vehicle won’t be a mainstream offering like the standard Murano.
“It’s not going to be a volume car,” Nissan North American sales and marketing VP Brian Carolin said. “But there’s a degree of bravery for us to bring out a car like that right now. It will surprise a lot of people.”
Cargo space is to be compromised for unlimited headroom, but since the Murano convertible will be targeted at empty-nesters, it shouldn’t be too much of an issue. The standard Murano’s 265 horsepower 3.5-liter V6 and CVT transmission should remain, with customers being able to choose between front and all-wheel drive.
Since Nissan opted for a soft-top version of this convertible, it may lose out in the style department, but it hopes to make up for that in gained fuel economy. Creating convertible hard-top on a vehicle this size would have likely added considerable weight, and further reduced cabin space.
The concept previews a production model, which will probably debut next year at a major North American auto show.
The 2012 Murano convertible will sit atop the Murano range, with pricing likely to start just over $40,000 when it goes on sale in late 2010.
Stirring it up
Of course, its style alone won’t be the only thing to stir up controversy.
Why? It was just three years ago that Audi debuted a concept car by the name of Cross Cabriolet Quattro concept. Now many may argue that Nissan and Audi compete in different enough realms that the similarity in naming is irrelevant, but don’t forget that the Murano CrossCabriolet is being touted as the world’s first all-wheel drive convertible crossover which can seat four.
The Audi Cross Cabriolet Quattro was touted at the time as “introducing a new vehicle segment,” which was ironically enough also done at the Los Angeles Auto Show.