Out with CHAdeMO and in with CCS.

Nissan has just revealed its much-anticipated Ariya electric crossover. It has a range of up to 300 miles (EPA estimate in 2wd trim with the biggest battery) and an estimated starting base price of $40,000. Additionally, Nissan has chosen to drop CHAdeMO in favor of CCS in the US and Europe for DC fast charging.

While it seems the Ariya is a big improvement over the current Nissan LEAF, there are some elements of the Ariya that we aren't particularly fond of including its 7.2 kWh home-charging limitation and a base price that seems a little high when compared to say the Tesla Model 3 or even a Volkswagen ID.4, which should be a head-to-head competitor for the Ariya.

However, there's also a lot to like with the Ariya. For starters, there are several versions to choose from and performance is actually very strong if you opt for certain versions of the car. Additionally, you get two battery choices, which makes the Ariya more suitable for a wider audience of buyers.

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Battery

Looking at the spec sheet we can see the gross capacity of the two battery sizes available are 65 kWh and 90 kWh. On those packs, Nissan is opening up 63 kWh and 87 kWh, respectively, to be accessed for use. That's an extremely high percentage of the pack compared to most competitors. We wonder if Nissan will allow owners to set a charge limit so charging can shut off below 100% for daily charging. 

The 90 kWh battery pack is expected to deliver 300 miles of driving range. We'd expect the 65 kWh standard pack to return roughly 225 miles of range, based on Nissan's 300-mile estimate for the larger pack. 

We also learned that Nissan will be sourcing their battery cells from Chinese battery giant CATL, and that they will be prismatic NMC (Lithium-Nickel-Manganese-Cobalt-Oxide) cells, and not pouch cells like the LEAF uses. 

Gallery: 2021 Nissan Ariya

Driver Assist Features

Nissan also told us that Nissan's ProPilot will be standard on the Aryia, and ProPilot Assist 2.0 will be optional. ProPilot Assist 2.0 offers hands-off single-lane highway operation. As with the LEAF, the Ariya will have Nissan's e-Pedal, which allows the driver to operate the vehicle in most conditions with a single pedal by offering strong lift-off regenerative braking. 

Also standard on all Ariyas are safety features including Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Rear Automatic Braking, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, and High Beam Assist. The Ariya will also feature Nissan’s Intelligent Around View Monitor and Nissan's Intelligent Forward Collision Warning.

Charging

Nissan's departure from CHAdeMO to CCS with the Ariya should strike a deathblow to CHAdeMO in the US and Europe, as Nissan was really the only OEM making CHAdeMO-capable EVs in any real volume. The Ariya will charge at speeds up to 130 kW on a DC Fast charger. We were told by Nissan that the Ariya can accept 350 amps at 400 volts, and hold its high charging rate for a long period, allowing for 175 miles of range to be added in 30 minutes. 

As for AC Charging, the Ariya will have a 7.2 kW onboard charger which is OK, but not great. Most of the new electric vehicles coming out with large batteries are opting for 9.6 kW AC charging, which can significantly reduce the charge time. I asked Nissan for comment on the decision to restrict the AC charging to 7.2 kW and was told that they believe most customers won't notice the difference since people typically charge overnight, and in that case, the slightly slower speed isn't a factor. 

You may notice in the photo gallery that there are chargeports on both sides of the vehicle. We asked Nissan about that and were told that only the vehicles delivered in Japan will have two chargeports. That's because those vehicles need a CHAdeMO inlet, and that will be located on the right front fender. Ariya shipped to the US and Europe will have a single Combo chargeport located on the left side front fender. 

Interior

The Ariya will feature Amazon Alexa to "simplify and organize their lives", as Nissan puts it. There's also wireless Apple Carplay and Android Auto standard on all Ariya. There's a flat floor to offer a more spacious interior look and feel, as well as Zero-Gravity seats wrapped up in Nissan's new "Timeless Japanese Futurism" design language.

Towing - Yes!

The Ariya will have a towing capacity of up to 1,500lbs in the US. For the European market, Nissan representatives said the Ariya will have a slightly higher towing capability than it does in the US, but didn't divulge the actually towing capacity the Ariya will have there. 

Thermal Management

With a decision that will make most Nissan fans exhale in relief, yes the Ariya will have a proper thermal management system. We don't know too many details about it but we were told it will be a proper liquid thermal management system. With a proper TMS, we can only hope that the Ariya will not suffer from the same battery degradation problems that have plagued the LEAF from its inception. 

ARIYA Cargo
The Ariya appears to have ample cargo space, yet the official capacity offered by Nissan is only 16.5 cu ft

Cargo space

We learned the Ariya will not have a front trunk, as Nissan engineers pushed the HVAC system and other components further forward than they usually are to allow for a more roomy interior. However, it appears the Ariya doesn't have much room for cargo in the rear. The specifications sheet states the Ariya has 16.5 cu ft (467 liters) of cargo volume for the front-wheel drive version, and 14.6 cu ft (413 liters) for the e-4ORCE AWD variant.

To put that into perspective, the much-smaller BMW i3 has 15.1 cu ft of cargo space and the similarly-sized Ford Mustang Mach-e offers 29 cu ft of cargo volume. Nissan representatives are looking into the cargo space numbers to make sure the figures posted in the release aren't a mistake. It seems to us, just looking at the pictures that the Ariya has ample cargo space, so we're not sure how they arrived at only 16.5 and 14.6 cu ft of space. 

Powertrain

The base Ariya will have front-wheel drive and will use an Externally Excited Synchronous Motor, (EESM) like the Renault Zoe uses. The LEAF uses a Permanent Magnet Excited Synchronous Motor (PMSM) as does the Tesla Model 3 and the BMW i3. 

The front-wheel-drive Ariya has 215 hp and 221 lb-ft of torque. For the e-4ORCE all-wheel-drive variant, Nissan adds another motor in the rear which increases the power figures to a very respectable 389 hp with 443 lb-ft of torque.

Summary

There's a lot to like about the Ariya. We are particularly happy to see that Nissan is using a large battery that will offer 300 miles of range and that they are finally using a proper thermal management system. 130 kW DC fast charge isn't great by today's standards, but it is good enough and certainly an upgrade from the LEAF. 

The Ariya is expected to launch about a year from now in Japan, with availability in the US and Europe before the end of 2021. Nissan tells us the starting price will be about $40,000 in the US which is roughly $8,000 more than than the starting price of a LEAF S. So while the Ariya will be a much more capable EV than the LEAF, buyers that are shopping in the ~$30,000 price range (pre-subsidiaries) will lose one of the options available to them today once the LEAF is retired.

We're looking forward to learning more about the Ariya in the coming months leading up to its launch. What are your thoughts on Nissan's new EV? Please let us know in the comment section below. 

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The Ariya is Nissan's latest EV and its crossover body style, promised long-range, and dual-motor e-4orce drivetrain presents a package with lots to love.

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Nissan Ariya world debut: an all-electric crossover for a new era 

– A stylish SUV packed with the latest connectivity, convenience, driver assistance 

and safety technology – 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (July 15, 2020) – Nissan today revealed the all-new Nissan Ariya electric crossover, marking a new chapter for Nissan electric vehicles. The EV premiered globally through a virtual event hosted at the soon-to-open Nissan Pavilion in Yokohama, Japan. 

Ariya – Nissan’s first all-electric crossover SUV – offers powerful acceleration and smooth, quiet operation, as well as an interior with a welcoming, luxurious lounge-like atmosphere. Its stress-free advanced driver assistance features, concierge-like assistance and seamless connectivity heightens on-road confidence and provides a welcoming environment for the driver and passengers. 

The all-new Ariya offers an estimated range of up to approximately 300 miles (preliminary Nissan estimate range for long range 2WD model), making Ariya the perfect partner for daily commutes and road trips alike. 

Ariya is based on the similarly-named concept vehicle displayed at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show and first hinted at with the IMx at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show. It’s the first production model to represent Nissan’s new electrified brand identity, forging a path toward a new automotive era where electrification, optimized platform packaging and seamless vehicle Artificial Intelligence technology will become standard. 

The all-new Ariya also builds on Nissan’s strength as an EV pioneer and innovator, including global sales of more than 475,000 Nissan LEAF electric vehicles since its introduction a decade ago. Ariya takes the powerful performance and capabilities of zero-emission vehicles to a new level. 

Design: a completely reimagined appearance The all-new Ariya is Nissan’s ultimate expression of style and technology, with each complimenting the other in aesthetics and function. Its 100% electric vehicle platform removed fundamental limitations and allowed designers to take new approaches to existing components. 

Ariya styling represents a significant redefinition of Nissan’s design philosophy. This new philosophy is based on what Nissan calls “Timeless Japanese Futurism,” which is characterized by a distinctive Japanese approach conveyed in a simple-yet-powerfully modern way. Designers embraced this with the key concepts of sleek, sexy and seamless to communicate how an EV paired with advanced driving capabilities can offer a new perspective to design, function and the ownership experience. 

Embracing the Japanese term iki, which characterizes the Ariya’s chic, cutting-edge nature, the front of the vehicle appears seamless, elegant and fresh. It’s highlighted by 

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a shield – a reimagined grille for the EV era. The shield incorporates a 3-D traditional Japanese kumiko pattern just under the smooth surface, while protecting sensing equipment used for driver assistance functions without the aesthetics interrupting operation. Nissan’s redesigned brand logo is prominently placed at the center of the aerodynamic shield, beaming with crisp definition from the 20 LEDs that compose it. 

The new brand logo represents Nissan’s passion and dedication towards innovation by challenging conventional approaches. In keeping both sun and bar design elements, the logo signals a respect for the company’s heritage, while moving towards a future of mobility services and electrification. 

The lower section of the shield is bordered by subtle lighting that illuminates, along with the logo, when the Ariya is ready for operation. Thin LED headlamps, constructed with four 20-millimeter mini-projectors to reinvent Nissan’s signature V-motion design. 

A single, uninterrupted horizon line stretches across the side profile, linking the front fascia and the rear and conveys linear movement, creating architectural beauty in tension and drama from every angle. 

The rear of Ariya is equally striking, characterized by a steeply raked C-pillar that blends flawlessly into the rear deck. The one-piece light blade, representing the rear combination lamps, has been engineered to give a blackout effect when parked, and a consistent red illumination, day or night, when in use. Rear fender flares and a high- mounted rear wing signal Ariya’s powerful EV capabilities. 

Ariya is offered with six two-tone exterior paint combinations, each sporting a black roof, and three striking full-body colors. A unique exterior Copper and Black two-tone color package, called Akatsuki, expresses the moment just before dawn, as the sun marks the beginning of a new day. 

The striking Ariya interior is defined by the Japanese term ma – referring to its spatiotemporal qualities of belonging to both space and time. The interior is more akin to a sleek café lounge on a starship, evoking performance and intrigue, rather than a traditional automotive cabin. 

The advantages provided by the company’s all-new EV platform have enabled the Ariya to offer a spacious cabin. For example, the compact nature of the powertrain components made it possible for Nissan’s engineers to install the climate control system under the hood (where a traditional gasoline engine would be), allowing the designers to utilize the whole length of the cabin without traditional obstructions such as a transmission tunnel. 

The flat, open floor – made possible by the location of the battery at the base of the chassis – and the slim-profile Zero Gravity seats – result in vast amounts of legroom and easy interaction between front- and rear-seat passengers. The EV drivetrain and the generous use of sound-absorbing materials result in a quiet cabin, allowing occupants to relax and enjoy the stress-free, lounge-like space. 

Ariya’s minimalist instrument panel blends seamlessly with the shape of the cabin and transitions into the doors. It’s devoid of buttons and switches found in conventional vehicles. Primary climate control functions are integrated into the wooden center dash in the form of capacitive haptic switches that offer the same feeling as mechanical switches by vibrating when touched. 

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Tucked under the center of the instrument panel is an innovative center storage box and fold-out tray. The innovative slide out table design transforms the cabin space into a mobile office or on-the-go picnic table, helping to make sure your time parked is productive. 

The adjustable center console can be moved to suit the driver’s personal preference and saved as part of the driver’s profile for automatic adjustment in future outings. The surface hosts a new shifter that fits in the palm of the hand to encourage a relaxed driving position, with haptic drive mode controls within easy reach. 

Rear-seat passengers are treated to an abundance of headroom and legroom, with the flat cabin floor allowing them to easily cross their legs and relax. Accents and ornamentation are carried into the rear space to give all the same sense of sophistication and comfort. The sleek front seats are positioned to obscure the B-pillar, offering occupants an outward panoramic view. 

Intelligent Power: Formidable EV performance for a wide range of needs Built on an all-new Alliance-developed EV platform, Ariya is the ultimate expression of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, Nissan’s vision to further improve the appeal of its vehicles and achieve its ultimate goal of a future with zero tailpipe emissions and virtually zero vehicle fatalities. 

The Nissan Ariya’s all-electric drivetrain is an example of seamless integration of advanced EV technology, integrating excellent power delivery, charging capabilities and extended range. With four core models offered, including two-wheel-drive and all-wheel- drive versions, Ariya is designed to meet the driving needs of a wide range of customers. 

Both Ariya front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive models offer a choice of 63 kWh of usable battery capacity – ideal for urban commuters and first time EV owners looking for quality and style in their next-generation EV – or 87 kWh. The 87 kWh models’ additional battery capacity delivers the additional range for those looking to venture on longer journeys. 

The twin electric motor, all-wheel-drive Ariya models feature Nissan’s most advanced all-wheel control technology, e-4ORCE. The “e” in e-4ORCE stands for Nissan’s 100% electric motor drive system. “4ORCE” (pronounced force) refers to the vehicle’s physical power and energy, with “4” representing all-wheel control. 

Born from the company’s rich history of developing memorable all-terrain vehicles and sports cars, e-4ORCE is the spiritual offspring of the Nissan GT-R's ATTESA E-TS torque split system and the intelligent all-wheel-drive systems found in Nissan’s lineup of crossovers and SUVs. 

By specifically managing power output and braking performance for smoothness and stability, e-4ORCE enhances driver confidence by tracing the steered driving line over almost any road surface. 

In addition to optimizing front and rear torque allocation, the system applies independent brake control at each of the four wheels to maximize the cornering force generated by each one. This delivers cornering that faithfully follows driver inputs with minimal steering adjustments. 

A smooth, powerful on-road presence 

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Staying true to Nissan’s heritage of producing fun-to-drive, exciting cars, Ariya’s all-new EV platform has been optimized to deliver exceptional handling. The battery pack sits under the center of the vehicle to ensure a low center of gravity and near-equal weight distribution, front and rear. 

The battery pack’s flat design and integrated cross-member in the battery case, allow the Ariya to have a flat floor and impressive structural rigidity. Suspension components are optimized to take advantage of this, creating stable handling and a comfortable ride while also suppressing vibrations and noise from entering the cabin space. 

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. 

Ariya’s highly rigid body structure and super responsive rack-and-pinion steering system provide the vehicle with crisp turn-in response, while its near 50:50 front/rear weight distribution – made possible by the battery positioned under the floor in the middle of the vehicle – helps Ariya behave in a predictable manner through all types of corners. 

The Nissan Ariya also features driver assistance features that have been enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of drivers around the globe. e-Pedal, first introduced in the Nissan LEAF, allows the driver to launch, accelerate and decelerate using only the accelerator pedal. On models equipped with e-4ORCE, regenerative torque is distributed not only to the front wheels, but also the rear. 

Intelligent Driving: a high-tech, low-stress driving experience The Ariya ensures high levels of comfort and confidence by providing occupants with the latest Nissan technologies, including the next-generation ProPILOT Assist advanced driver assistance 

ProPILOT Assist 2.0 is the newest iteration of Nissan’s driver assistance technology. Available on the Nissan LEAF, Altima, Rogue and Rogue Sport, ProPILOT Assist is a hands-on assistance system that helps drivers stay centered in their lane, navigate stop- and-go highway traffic and maintain a set vehicle speed and distance to the vehicle ahead. 

ProPILOT Assist 2.0 expands on this, allowing attentive drivers to take their hands off the steering wheel under certain conditions, helping reduce the driver’s workload and stress in single-lane highway traffic.1,2 In addition, ProPILOT Assist 2.0 also supports multi- lane highway driving tasks such as lane changes, passing and highway exiting. 

ProPILOT Assist 2.0 uses the navigation system and high-definition 3-D map data to detect the roadway type, direction and speed limits, and can adjust vehicle speed accordingly for a relaxed and enjoyable journey. A Driver Monitoring System mounted on the steering column monitors that the driver is attentive to the road ahead when using the hands-off feature. 

When driving in hands-on mode, ProPILOT Assist 2.0 takes advantage of the extensive 3-D map data to help keep the vehicle centered in the lane with increased accuracy. 

The Nissan Ariya is also equipped with standard Nissan Safety Shield® 360, a suite of six active safety features that includes Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning, High Beam Assist and Rear Automatic Braking. 

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Intelligent Integration: keeping the Nissan Ariya up-to-date and at maximum potential The Ariya embodies Nissan’s philosophy of designing vehicles around the driver that is both intuitive and exciting. This includes equipping it with the latest in connectivity, including a new human-machine interface and firmware updates over the air. 

Nissan’s intelligent personal assistance technology features 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. 

The vehicle also includes Amazon Alexa to help customers simplify and organize their lives. Alexa can play music, place calls, listen to audiobooks, control smart home devices, and more, with just voice commands. Both systems work hand-in-hand to provide a seamless, tailored user experience, whether during a daily commute or weekend trip. 

Ariya will also feature wireless Apple CarPlay® and Android AutoTM standard to help drivers seamlessly integrate their smartphone into their vehicle experience. 

The connectivity display interface features both a 12.3-inch instrument monitor and 12.3-inch center display along a single horizon. By displaying multiple facets of information on one horizontal plane, information can be quickly digested. The two displays are oriented in a wave-like shape to ensure important vehicle information, such as battery information, range and navigation, can be easily reached and scrolled through with the simple swipe. 

Further information can be swiped between the displays to customize and prioritize the information displayed just behind the steering wheel for an unparalleled bespoke experience. Ariya’s head-up display boasts one of the largest full-color displays in the segment. The projected display shows similar information found in the meter display, providing crisp, driving information within the driver’s field of vision without being distracting. 

The Ariya is also the first Nissan model with firmware updates over the air, called “Remote Software Upgrade.” The technology automatically updates various software inside the vehicle – specifically, software that controls the multimedia system, electric and electronic architecture, chassis, climate system and EV settings. 

The future of the electric vehicle is now The Nissan Ariya crossover marks a new era for electric vehicles, promising an incredibly powerful and smooth ride thanks to the full strength of Nissan Intelligent Mobility delivered by the latest assistance technologies designed to support, respond and respect the driver’s intentions. A sleek, sexy, seamless design inspired by Timeless Japanese Futurism gives all occupants a welcome, personal impression aimed to surpass expectations. The Nissan Ariya will go on sale in Japan from mid-2021, with U.S. availability to follow later in 2021. Suggested retail pricing in the U.S. will start around $40,000. 

For more information on the complete Nissan vehicle lineup, please visit NissanNews.com.