The Nissan Ariya is a new pure electric SUV with a range of up to 310 miles and futuristic styling that aims to kickstart the struggling Nissan brand.
It also comes in a surprise high-performance range-topping version with 394hp, 0-62mph in 5.1 seconds and an all-wheel drive system inspired by the Nissan GT-R supercar.
Built on an all-new electric car architecture, the Ariya has a distinctive front end with an LED-framed ‘shield’ and the first appearance of Nissan’s simplified new logo.
The sides are sleek and striking, and the rear has a distinctive rake and eye-catching LED lights.
Nissan says the short overhangs, coupe-like roofline and big wheels (19 inches are standard) are all a by-product of the 100 percent bespoke electric car underpinnings.
The interior is radical for a Nissan too, the firm likening it to a ‘café lounge on a starship’.
It has button-less haptic controls, dual 12.3-inch widescreen infotainment displays and slim ‘Zero Gravity’ seats that give plentiful space front and rear.
The roomy cabin allows those in the rear to cross their legs, while those in the front have a slide-out table in the centre of the dash that turns the car into a mobile office.
Nissan is offering the Ariya in both two-wheel drive and all-wheel drive guises: the latter is called ‘e-4orce’.
Both drive types come with either a 63kWh battery or an 87kWh battery, and the e-4orce is also available in more powerful 87kWh Performance version with greater output.
Bizarrely, there are five different power outputs in total:
2WD 63kWh: 217hp
2WD 87kWh: 242hp
AWD e-4orce 63kWh: 278hp
AWD e-4orce 87kWh: 306hp
AWD e-4orce 87kWh Performance: 394hp
The fastest Ariya does 0-62mph in just 5.1 seconds, making it a seriously fast performance SUV. Even the standard version does it in 7.5 seconds, though.
The e-4orce versions ‘feature Nissan’s most advanced all-wheel control technology’ inspired by the Nissan GT-R supercar’s amazingly able system.
It’s easy for EVs to deliver quick 0-62mph times, said Nissan development chief Makoto Fukuda.
“The Ariya is also fast in a straight line, but it provides maximum, usable performance in a wide range of driving conditions such as on a snowy mountain road or on wet city streets.”
The twin electric motors even improve ride quality, claims Nissan.
The electric car range is plentiful too, with up to 310 miles on offer:
2WD 63kWh: 223 miles
2WD 87kWh: 310 miles
AWD e-4orce 63kWh: 211 miles
AWD e-4orce 87kWh: 285 miles
AWD e-4orce 87kWh Performance: 248 miles
Quick charging from CCS chargers is promised: 63kWh versions have a 7.4kW onboard charger, while 87kWh versions have a 22kW three-phase charger.
Rapid charging up to 130kW is supported.
Nissan’s second all-electric vehicle, which will sit above the Nissan Leaf, arrives in the UK in 2021, and is set to compete with vehicles such as the Tesla Model Y and forthcoming Volkswagen ID4.
Prices are to be confirmed but are expected to start well in excess of £30,000.
For more all-electric motoring news, visit our sister site MotoringElectric.com.