Nissan’s Unveiling Of The Ariya Concept Car Gives Us A Glimpse Into The Vision Of The Japanese Automotive Giant, As It Aims To Transcend From ‘Affordable’ To ‘Premium’ Electric Vehicles!
- The success of the all-electric Nissan Leaf has credibly cemented the reputation of the Japanese auto company on the global electric vehicle sector. The pure electric car has been a runaway success with the most number of EVs sold since being offered on sale in 2010.
- The Nissan AWD Ariya electric car was unveiled at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show. The mid-sized concept EV crossover is an expansion from the IMx concept unveiled in the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show (IM is the title Nissan uses for future-thinking self-driving and EV propulsion ideas). The Ariya does not use the IM nomenclature. The body style, though a significant improvement from the Leaf, does have a sense of ‘familiar’.
- The Ariya EV is expected to have dual electric motors (front and rear) and come packed with technology, to include radar and ProPilot 2.0 sensors (Nissan’s award-winning driver assistance system). It will also combine navigated highway driving with hands-off single-lane driving capability.
- Little is known about the performance, but some commentators suggest the electric crossover will have a zero-emission range up to 300 miles and accelerate 0-60 mph in 5 seconds. The near-production electric crossover concept may shift to production in the near future.
- The interior is minimalistic, as we now expect to see with most electric cars, with upholstery sympathetic to the environment. According to Nissan ‘in keeping with the Japanese notion of beauty in subtlety, the Ariya concept interior visuals reflect a timeless, modest sensibility’.
- Nissan is keen to rebrand its position in the EV sector, despite the success of the Leaf battery-electric vehicle (BEV). The automotive manufacturer is keen to ‘upgrade’ the Nissan brand perception in the EV sector from ‘practical and affordable’ to ‘premium’. The pure electric crossover Ariya is expected to be priced as a premium EV.
- Nissan’s CEO, Makoto Uchida, is keen for the company to pursue a pricing strategy that enhances profitability, a change in direction from the past ‘discounting’ strategy pursued by Nissan, in particular with the Leaf.
- The Ariya is expected to be available in different EV battery capacities with both single and dual-motor options.
- The success of EV concepts like Ariya, a near-production concept, is vital for the Japanese automotive group that has been struggling in Europe in recent years. In 2019, the company recorded the biggest sales drop for a mass-market automotive manufacturer, with volumes declining by nearly 25%.
- Prices yet to be confirmed but according to Automotive News Europe, the electric vehicle could be priced between US$55,500 and US$77,500.
- The million-dollar question: will consumers used to ‘Nissan affordability’ accept a higher priced Nissan electric crossover. Only time will tell, but we do like the name!
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