2015 Nissan Murano: Nissan Connect Touchscreen Interface Works Well
by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on December 24, 2015
Our 2015 Nissan Murano is the loaded-up Platinum trim level, which means it comes standard with the 8-inch "Nissan Connect" touchscreen. I've been driving our Murano for about a week straight now and have a few observations on how well this touchscreen's interface works.
For automotive touchscreens, an 8-inch display is a pretty healthy size. Most range from 5 to 8 inches, so this one's on the upper end. In theory, the additional real estate allows the interface designers to create a less cluttered and easier-to-use interface.
Similar to Chrysler's UConnect and Ford's latest Sync 3, the main menu buttons are placed in a row along the bottom of the screen. To the left of the screen on the dashboard console stack are physical buttons for Menu (the home screen), Map and Audio. The touchscreen does not interface with the climate control system.
The screen's graphics and resolution are pretty crisp, and the touchscreen responds quickly to your inputs. It supports smartphone-like inputs. So, for instance, you can swipe across to see additional menu screens, hold your finger down to pan the map screen (navigation comes standard with this system), or swipe down or up to scroll through digital music lists. Response times are quick, for the most part.
You also get full voice command functionality with this system. I've tested it out a few times for selecting and playing music files. It takes a little longer than Sync to get what you want (more confirmation hoops to jump through), but overall its voice recognition capability seems solid.
Other things I like: Bluetooth phone pairing is painless, the satellite radio presets are a full block of 18 channels (you can scan through all 18 instead of going six at a time) and the digital music interface, while a little slow at times, gives you a multiple ways of accessing and selecting files.
Oddly, the main aspect missing with this Nissan Connect interface is being able to "connect" up any sort of useful smartphone app. Right now there is no integration for Pandora, internet radio or other common smartphone apps. This would be "Nissan Connect with Mobile Apps," which isn't available on this system. It is offered on other Nissan touchscreen systems, but nonetheless it's a curious omission on what would seem to be a flagship touchscreen. Nissan has promised upgrades, so presumably at some point this system will have it.
Overall, though, our Murano's touchscreen is one of the better ones on the market. It looks sharp and it's easy to use.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor