Tesla's decision to cut prices on its Model 3 and Model Y in China by up to 17 percent in early January as had a cascading effect on electric vehicle prices in the world's largest car market.
Other EV makers have followed suit and cut the prices of their models by significant amounts, most notably XPeng, Aito, and more recently Toyota.
Last week, we reported that Toyota cut the base price of its bZ4X electric SUV by more than $4,000 in China to spur sales. Now, Nissan has gone down the same path, announcing a massive discount for its Ariya electric SUV.
The Ariya, which is Nissan's flagship EV model in China, is currently being offered with a discount of up to 60,000 RMB ($8,750) for all four versions available in China – two single motor trims and two dual motor trims.
According to CnEVPost, the main page of the Dongfeng Nissan joint venture's website is now showing a starting price for the Nissan Ariya of 224,800 RMB ($32,770).
The website notes that the massive discount is available for a limited-time only, from February 17 to March 31. This is probably a test for Nissan to see how the major price cuts influence sales.
Gallery: Nissan Ariya First Drive
The Ariya is Nissan's most expensive EV sold in China, where the automaker currently offers several all-electric models. Those include the Leaf, e-NV200 van, and an electrified version of the ICE-powered Sylphy sedan – known as the Sentra in North America.
In anticipation of discontent among existing Nissan Ariya owners, the automaker is compensating them with a credit worth 5,000 RMB ($730) if they bought the car before December 31, 2022, and 10,000 RMB ($1,460) if they purchased it between January 1 and February 16 of this year.
That might not be enough to appease existing owners, though. Tesla was confronted with big protests at Gigafactory Shanghai and local stores after the most recent price cuts in early January, for example. The automaker didn't give in to pleas for compensation, though.
It will be interesting to see if Nissan decides to cut Ariya prices in other parts of the world after China. The US appears unlikely to get price cuts for now seeing as the automaker recently told dealers that the Ariya will be in limited supply this year.
After the price cuts applied in China, the 2023 Nissan Ariya is significantly more expensive in the United States, carrying a starting MSRP of $43,190 (excluding $1,295 destination).