Replacing rear differential on 2007 Murano

I just recently had to replace the rear differential on my 2007 Murano (it has 22,000 miles. The Nissan mechanic said he has never seen one disintegrate like that. Since then, it doesn’t seem to drive as smooth and my gas mileage has dropped, from about 17mpg to 14mpg. Is this normal? I’m wondering if I should be thinking of trading it in.

What happened to the Powertrain Warranty on that vehicle?
With only 22k on the odometer, and the passage of only ~2 years, wasn’t that warranty still in effect?

As to the drop in mileage, I suppose that it is possible that a differential with a different ratio could have been installed. Ask your mechanic about this issue.

Yes, it was covered under warranty, thank goodness. I will call the mechanic this afternoon. I just want to make sure this isn’t the beginning of a downhill slide for this vehicle. Thanks for your reply!

Things fail early thankfully rarely and in your case in warranty. Not really a sign of anything.

Out of curiousity are all four tires matched in size/brand/tread depth?

The tires are matched, however one is newer than the other three.

Was that tire one of the rears?

When you say “newer” at what point was it changed mileage wise? The reason I ask is AWD is not tolerant of a different tread depths if substantial enough in wear. I believe we had another post on this board about Murano and rear diff too.

As to 65Acura’s question, the new tire is on the rear. and for andrew, the tire was changed out at about 20,000. It sounds like I should take it to the dealership and have this issue checked out. Thanks!

20k is a significant amount of wear vs a new tire. The single tire replacement likely burned up your old differential. I would not be surprised if the new one suffers the same fate.

Yikes! Do you recommend replacing all 4 tires or just the 2 rear?

You need to replace all 4 tires on any AWD vehicle at the same time to prevent this from happening.

Now, if you don’t like the car anymore, you can simply keep killing the rear differential, and getting new ones installed until you get to lemon law the car.

If you do like the car, replace your tires, and make sure you rotate in the full size spare on every tire rotation, at 3k miles, to prevent this from happening again.


…and, read the Owner’s Manual, which discusses the tire issue as well as virtually everything else that you need to know about the safe and economical operation of the vehicle.

At least the pair. If your rear differential is limited slip (AWD or not) it would suffer the same fate with enough tread depth difference.

Bingo! That’s more than likely the cause of your Murano’s rear differential failure. As others have alluded to, AWD systems tend to have a low tolerance for tire diameter differences and it looks like the mis-matched rear tire diameters may have contributed to your differential failure. You should pursue the shop that replaced that tire for compensation, although you may be culpable to a certain extent if you did not follow recommendations in your owner’s manual regarding tire replacement. Good luck!