Nissan Sees Ariya Following Leaf as Introduction to BEVs

The Ariya represents the next step in Nissan’s electrification plans, which aims to have BEVs account for 40% of sales in the U.S. by 2030, the automaker says.

Joseph Szczesny

November 3, 2022

4 Min Read
Nissan Ariya 23 front 1.4
Base Nissan Ariya Engage has $43,190 starting price.Nissan

FARMINGTON HILLS, MI – Nissan’s newest battery-electric vehicle, the Ariya, blends electric propulsion with features found in compact vehicles from around the world.

The Ariya is described by Nissan engineers as a transitional vehicle, designed to help customers shift from a CUV with a conventional internal-combustion powertrain to a BEV with little or no angst.

In fact, the single electric motor in the front-wheel-drive version of the Ariya, which goes on sale later this fall in the U.S., is packaged under the hood where an ICE would be. The all-wheel-drive Ariya, due to reach the U.S. market next year, will have two motors, the second located in the rear.

Nissan Ariya 23 badge.jpg

Nissan Ariya 23 badge

The base Ariya Engage’s 160-kW motor makes 214 hp and its battery with 63 kWh of usable power is rated at 216 miles (348 km). Four other trim levels use a 178-kW motor producing 238 hp, with the 87-kWh battery in the Ariya Venture + providing up to 304 miles (489 Nm) of range. Both powertrains produce 221 lb.-ft. (300 Nm) of torque.

The battery pack raises the BEV’s curb weight to 4,323 lbs. (1,961 kg).   

As a transitional vehicle, the Ariya uses components borrowed from the Alliance platform for Nissan CUVs such as the Murano and Rogue.

The Ariya is 182.9 ins. (4,646 mm) long and 65.4 ins. (1,661 mm) tall with a wheelbase of 109.3 ins. (2,776 mm).

The exterior styling of the Ariya reflects Nissan’s design philosophy of “Timeless Japanese Futurism” for the electric era. A reimagined grille incorporates a 3-D traditional Japanese Kumiko pattern just under the smooth surface while protecting sensors used for driver-assistance functions.

On the road, simple controls and gauges make it easy to pilot the Ariya, which has an impressive turning radius, corners neatly and more than holds its own at freeway speeds. The overall ride and handling feel solid and familiar.

The BEV drivetrain and the use of sound-absorbing materials result in a quiet cabin, eliminating some the stress that comes with driving in urban traffic.

Nissan Ariya 23 at charger.jpg

Nissan Ariya 23 at charger

The battery pack’s flat design and integrated cross-member in the battery case give the Ariya a flat floor and added structural rigidity. Suspension components are designed to take advantage of this, creating stable handling and a comfortable ride while also suppressing vibrations and noise.

In the rear, the suspension packaging, including the multi-link system and rear electric motor (if equipped) create an exceptional balance of ride comfort, handling and performance.

The interior of the Ariya also utilizes Japanese design features, such as lantern-like accents suggesting traditional Japanese craftsmanship.  

The Ariya’s minimalist instrument panel conforms to the shape of the cabin and transitions into the doors, and like a smartphone uses touchscreens rather than buttons. Primary climate control functions are controlled by capacitive haptic switches that offer the same feeling as mechanical switches by vibrating when touched.

Nissan Ariya 23 cockpit.jpg

Nissan Ariya 23 cockpit

Tucked under the center of the instrument panel is a center storage box and fold-out tray. The slide-out table design transforms the cabin space into a mobile office or on-the-go picnic table.

Alexa, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Sirius XM Radio are available.

Nissan is making ProPilot Assist 2.05, the newest iteration of the automaker’s driver-assistance technology, available on the Ariya. The updated system expands on ProPilot Assist and allows attentive drivers to take their hands off the steering wheel under certain conditions. The system also supports multi-lane driving tasks such as lane changes, passing and highway exiting.

For the first time in the U.S., ProPilot Park is available with the Ariya. ProPilot Park takes over steering, acceleration, braking and gear shifting to guide the vehicle into a parking spot when activated, according to Nissan.

Nissan has sold more than 600,000 units of the Leaf BEV, which was considered something of an oddity when it was introduced 11 years ago. But the Ariya represents the next step in the brand’s electrification plans, which aims to have BEVs account for 40% of sales in the U.S. by 2030, according to Mike Colleran, Nissan vice president of marketing.

Nissan Ariya 23 rear 3.4.jpg

Nissan Ariya 23 rear 3.4


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