EV Review: 2024 Nissan ARIYA


Electric vehicles are the latest topic for heated political debates, but there is no doubt that they are the future. Almost all manufacturers either come up with electrified models of their current gas model lineup, and some brands already have dedicated EV platforms like our latest tester, the Nissan ARIYA. The ARIYA is Nissan’s not the first attempt, but they were one of the first automakers back in 2010s that pushed the electrification in the industry with the Leaf.

The biggest problem with the Nissan Leaf is the overall cheap feeling and ride quality, as it is meant to be a cheap commuter for the masses. The ARIYA is here to change the perception, it can offer the premium driving experience with a much better EV platform with a reasonable price tag, but with much fierce competition.

The Looks – Exterior & Interior

Even though the ARIYA is only available as a battery electric vehicle, it uses the CMF platform used by the French manufacturer – Renault, Mitsubishi and some Nissan models including the latest Rogue. The CMF platform is modified significantly to be able to accommodate the huge battery pack. Regardless of which platform it uses, there are no shared parts anywhere on the exterior, the ARIYA looks unique while still carrying traditional Nissan design language, especially in the front fascia.

Even though it shares its platform with the Rogue, the ARIYA doesn’t look as rugged and it is significantly smaller inside and out. Technically, it is still a crossover with slightly higher ground clearance and larger dimensions compared to an average hatchback, and it is more practical with the huge doors and much easier to get in and out. The dual colour option makes the ARIYA look even more premium, it proves that a Nissan can offer premium products without an INFINITI badge.

The biggest limitation is the sloping roofline which looks very good from all angles, but the headroom is relatively limited, especially for taller adults. At 6’1″, my head wasn’t touching to the headliner, but even at the lowest seat position, I was very close and it always gives you the impression that you are on top of the vehicle, rather than being in it. For smaller adults, it should not be an issue, so the driving position is a hit or miss, depending on your size.

I started with the negatives, but that was pretty much all of the negatives. The interior quality was one of the highlights and it was totally unexpected. The build quality, diversity, material choices and the overall design language are the main reasons why you would choose the ARIYA compared to the other entries, just because you usually expect this level of refinement from a premium entry. Of course, some parts are a carryover from the other Nissan models, but they are either not visible, or don’t look cheap.

In typical EV fashion, the ARIYA offers a digital experience as much as possible, but with some amount of haptic feedback buttons, and some physical controls. If you are looking for a traditional car interior layout, this would be a better choice than a Tesla, just because you get a full 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster right in front of the driver. The ARIYA comes standard with dual 12.3-inch screens, and the other one is for the infotainment system, which is the latest version that features both Amazon Alexa and built-in voice assistant.

Even though the ARIYA does not offer a great amount of headroom due to the battery location and sloping roofline, the seats are exceptionally comfortable. Like most Nissan models, it comes with Zero Gravity seats that I found more comfortable than any other seats in this price range. Like the front seats, you can also adjust the center console based on your liking, the center console can move forward or back if you need more space in the front. There is also a hidden large cubby located in the center of the dashboard if you want to hide your personal belongings, the interior is very well laid out including the storage options.

If you have rear seat passengers, you may want to keep the center console closer to the dashboard as it takes some rear legroom space if you move it back. The rear seat occupants get nice creature comforts like the air vents, USB ports and heated seats, and they get a decent amount of legroom which helps especially if you have front or rear-facing child seats.

Just like the headroom space, the cargo space suffers a little bit due to the sporty silhouette of the ARIYA. It is not small, but the overall usability is not great for few reasons. The first one is that, there is no frunk. You pop the hood and see electric motors that send power to the front wheels. The second problem is the cargo floor, it is relatively high and that means the vertical storage space is quite limited. On paper, the ARIYA offers slightly below-average cargo space with 22.8 cubic feet (645 litres) behind the rear seats, which can be increased to 59.7 cubic feet (1690 litres).

The Specs & Experience

The ARIYA is a unique choice when it comes to the drivetrain choice. You can opt for the AWD option, but the base trim comes with a front-wheel drive option, unlike all other entries where you find the rear-wheel drive is standard. There are also two different battery pack sizes, the lower trims only come with the 66 kWh lithium-ion battery. Our tester is the top-of-the-line Evolve+ with an E-4ORCE powertrain, meaning that it has a larger 91 kWh battery and dual motor all-wheel-drive system.

Even though our tester is the AWD version, the front motors send more power than the rear wheels, meaning that the ARIYA wants to understand a lot more than the other entries. Not sure why Nissan decided to keep its front wheel biased programming especially when there are no mechanical restrictions, but the ARIYA is still very sure-footed and sends up to 50% of the power to the rear wheels when needed.

If you opt for the top trim with the larger battery, the ARIYA generates around 389 horsepower and 442 lb-ft of torque. The advertised range is around 440 kilometres at 100% charge, but expect to get less total range if you drive in a colder climate, and if you plan to keep the battery at 80% for a more reliable long-term ownership experience. The ARIYA can be charged with the fastest level 3 DC charger, which charges the large battery from 10 to 80% in around 40 minutes. If you are charging at home with the fast level 2 charger, you should be able to charge it in 90 minutes with a 50kW charger.

Behind the wheel, the ARIYA is a great daily driver. It is easy to operate, easy to figure out even when you start driving it the first time, and it is not punishing the driver or the passengers in any way. Nissan designed the ARIYA in a way to prioritizes comfort more than anything else. Soft steering weight, gradual and predictable accelerator pedal feedback, softly sprung suspension, and thick sidewalls are the perfect combination for the road comfort that most people are looking for.

The noise, vibration and harshness levels are incredibly low for a vehicle in this price range, you only hear the wind noise at higher speeds. As expected, it does “EV” things really well, it accelerates like a roller coaster, and offers a lot of confidence in the mid-corner due to the low center of gravity, thanks to the battery pack placed at the bottom of the vehicle. The most impressive thing is, that it does everything silently.

The Verdict

Nissan is one of the first Japanese manufacturers that really pushed electrification in the industry with the Leaf since it was first released in 2010. However, they were unable to continue leading the EV market for many years, as they didn’t bring anything new for more than a decade. Even though the competition is much more fierce than a decade ago, the 2024 Nissan ARIYA is a step in the right direction for the brand.

It is not easy to find the right EV, as there are many other contenders like the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Hyundai Ioniq 5, or KIA EV6. ARIYA would be the most refined and easygoing choice in its class, but just not as good when it comes to the driving dynamics. It could be a great fit for people who want to have a decent EV that has great road manners with great features in a simplified fashion.

EngineCurrent-excited synchronous AC (dual motor)
Battery Pack91-kWh lithium-ion
Max power389 hp
Max torque442 lb-ft
0-100 km/h5.1 sec
Curb Weight5087 lbs – 2307 kg
Range270 mi – 435 km
Price (As tested – CAD)$72,939

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