2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

The 2015 Nissan Murano was unveiled this morning on Kelly & Michael, with a surprisingly bold shape and some funky-spoked wheels. Shock value is dialed back in the interior, but Nissan has certainly made their oversized cute ute difficult to ignore.

Last month we speculated that the new Murano might share some design with the 2014 Nissan Rogue, and we were sort of right. The family face, with Nissan's now-signature "V-Motion" grille and "boomerang" headlights, is definitely there but those hips and that rear window give the bulbous crossover a look all it's own.

This will be the first Murano and ninth Nissan to be built at the company's Canton, Mississippi plant.

Nissan Senior Vice President and Chief Creative Officer Shiro Nakamura was proud this vehicle's production design stayed close to the concept. "Concept cars have historically been used to attract crowds to a manufacturer's display at auto shows, so the people will stay and look at the production vehicles. At Nissan, we're different. We use concepts to explore new design standards with an eye toward bringing them from show stands to showrooms."

We'll see the 2015 Murano in those showrooms around the end of this year with the S, SV, SL and Platinum. Each of which will be available in front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive powered by a 3.5 V6 and Xtronic CVT.

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

Optional toys will include an 8-inch touchscreen, panoramic sunroof plus Moving Object Detection (MOD), Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Predictive Forward Collision Warning (PFCW) and Forward Emergency Braking. There's also a new Cross Traffic Alert (CTA) system that "utilizes radar to detect a moving vehicle behind the Murano approaching from either side of the parking space."

Nissan also says the new Murano is the sleekest in the "midsized crossover" segment with a drag coefficient of 0.31.

We'll know more about engine options and performance predictions at the New York Auto show this week.

Futuristic? Yes. Bold? For the "family SUV" market, absolutely. Even the wheels, which will be available as 18's or 20's, look fresh.

Think Nissan can pull this look off or are they smearing lipstick all over a weirdly-shaped pig?

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

2015 Nissan Murano: This Is It

Images: Nissan