The company is not going through its best moments due to the ongoing economic situation but has already kicked off in full swing its reworked model strategy – we have already seen the Rogue SUV and now Ariya infuses even styling to the range. The design comes virtually unchanged from the preceding concept.
No surprises here, we should remember Nissan has never been afraid to experiment – having established on its own the compact and subcompact crossover segments with the original Qashqai and Juke generations. Nissan has a name for the new styling definitions brought by the Ariya - Timeless Japanese Futurism.
And it all starts and EV-specific front fascia. Front and center is the new 3D shield inspired by a “traditional Japanese kumiko pattern”. There is also a touch of bling – Nissan's logo has also been reimagined and is now backlit with no less than 20 LEDs. The profile is clean and sleek, supported by standard 19-inch or optional 20-inch wheels.
The interior highlights all the latest technologies of the company. It comes, for the first time, with OTA capabilities (firmware over-the-air updates) and certain tasks and commands will be transmitted to the car via an intelligent personal assistant with “a hybrid voice recognition system with advanced natural language understanding technology to handle in-vehicle assistance without the driver taking their eyes off the road.”
There is also a unified driving experience center – a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster combines with an equally-large 12.3-inch central touchscreen. When available, the new crossover EV will arrive with an enhanced version of the company’s ProPilot semi-autonomous driving assistance system.
The technology now takes advantage of the integrated navigation system to extract map data for the plotted course. It is still only allowing one-lane automated driving, but it can now adjust based on speed limits and road conditions ahead. Of course, the heart of this new crossover is the EV technology – and Ariya will offer a broad choice to fend off rivals.
Power differs according to the selected choice: 160, 178, 205, 225 and 290 kW for the flagship Ariya Performance. Specifications are geared towards long-range driving or a sporty atmosphere. For example, the least range comes from the base e-4ORCE 63 kWh (340 km), while the 2WD 87 kWh model will carry on for up to 500 km (310 miles).
In terms of raw performance, the sprint ranges between 7.5 and 5.1 seconds to 62 mph (100 kph), while top speed is limited to 160 kph (100 mph) for the 2WD and 200 kph (124 mph) for the e-4ORCE models. Nissan positions the Ariya as a compact offering at 4,595 mm long and with a 468 (415 for AWD) liter boot capacity.
Nissan has thought about everything – the Japanese automaker has also prepared a towing capacity rating of up to 1500 kg (3307 lbs.). The powertrain includes three (Standard, Sport and ECO) drive modes for the 2WD and there is an additional Snow setting for the AWD versions.
An interesting change also comes in the charging department – Nissan adopts the European Combined Charging System (CCS). The on-board chargers come in two forms – 7.4 kW (63 kWh) and 22 kW (87 kWh), while public DC stations will top up the batteries at up to 130 kW.