Range up to 533 km
From € 47,300
Nissan has had some success in the electric car market for over a decade thanks to the avant-garde Leaf. Ten years also that its zero-emissions offer is struggling to rise, so that the new SUV Ariya arrives a little late, as the competition has already invested in its segment, starting with that of the Volkswagen Group. Manufactured, like the Renault Mégane E-Tech, on the CMF-EV platform of the Renault-Nissan Alliance, it conventionally places its engine at the front and its battery between the axles.
The body is futuristic, but lacks a bit of personality, with some styling cues from other brands being adopted, for example the roof is reminiscent of what we see at Opel. However, it is still a feast for the eyes.
The passenger compartment is also very pleasant, both in terms of sleek design and space, also in the back where you feel very comfortable. And we checked: seat folded down, you can lie in the trunk (our journalist is almost 1.90 m), very deep but little height. Nevertheless, there is progress to be made in terms of modularity, as the seat does not shift and the files cannot be adjusted. It seems that the clientele is not receptive to such refinements.
She may prefer the fully integrated keys over the center strip that imitates the wood of the dashboard. A beautiful style item. Just like the configurable 12.3-inch digital instrument panel, the central touchscreen of the same dimensions and slightly oriented towards the driver, as well as the thick suede covering of the dashboard. However, some plastics retain a very low-end appearance, while the assembly sometimes leaves something to be desired, especially the adjustment of the glove boxes.
We were entrusted with an Ariya 63 kWh in high Evolve finish, with very rich equipment. In addition to the automatic dual-zone air conditioning, there are front seats, but also a central armrest with electric adjustment. There’s even a central glovebox with electric opening that locks with the doors. It’s nice, but all this weighs heavily and pulls on the 12-volt battery used for accessories, which is charged by the large 63 kWh. Basically, if both are completely empty (according to what a Nissan engineer told us, it’s theoretically possible), you could end up with a blocked central glovebox. Annoying when we put the house keys in it…
Standard electrical performance
The block, of the synchronous type, comes in two powers depending on the lithium-ion battery with CATL cells with which it is associated: 160 kW if it contains 63 kWh (218 hp) and 170 kW if it increases to 87 kWh. In the first case, the optimal autonomy is announced at 403 km WLTP, in the second at 533 km, values in the good average, knowing that consumption evolves according to the equipment from 17.6 to 17.8 kW/100 km in the first case, and from 18.1 kW/100 km to 18.4 kW/100 km in the second. Again, these numbers are very decent in the category. Later, a twin-engine version (therefore 4×4 as the second block is at the rear) will be offered with 306 hp, in 87 kWh (19.3 to 19.5 kW/100 km announced).
To fill watts, different solutions. A 7.4 kW charger is standard, 22 kW optional (€1,000), to connect your Ariya to AC power at home. With the small charger, the 63 kWh battery in the best case goes from 10% to 100% in 10 hours, and with the large, in 3.5 hours, for the 87 kWh battery, 1.30 hours and 5 hours respectively.
You can also charge the Ariya on the public network, in direct current, knowing that it collects 130 kW. Thus, it can recover up to 350 km of theoretical autonomy (WLTP) in 30 min or even 198 km in 15 min. Slightly better performance than the Volkswagen ID.4. Another way of looking at things, the 63 kWh battery goes from 20% to 80% and fills 28 min, versus 30 min for the 87 kWh. The system is designed in such a way that the charging speed is as constant as possible so that the user can manage it instinctively. The car is equipped with a Combo CCS connector, and two cables, a mode 2 of 10 A and a mode 3 of 32 A. Something to deal with in all situations.
Reading the data sheet, you can only be amazed at the detail of the Ariya’s weight. In the basic version, the SUV weighs 1,980 kg, which is a lot, knowing that the 63 kWh battery represents 451 kg of this mass. It is clear that the Nissan without its batteries already weighs 1,529 kg, ie 14 kg more than a Qashqai 4×4… It is clear that, as we see at Volkswagen, faced with the same problem, there is a lot of room for improvement in the reduction of electric vehicles.
To minimize this overweight on the road, the Ariya relies on McPherson struts in combination with lower wishbones at the front and a multi-link axle at the rear. No controlled damping planned for the time being. performances? When the Ariya is limited to the max at 160 km/h in 4×2 and 200 km/h in 4×4, it goes from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.5s with the small battery, which is already very lively. This time goes to 7.6 s with the large battery, whose excess weight (it weighs 572 kg, total 2,121 kg) is not compensated by the higher power, and drops to 5.7 s in 4×4: there comes the 300 hp (and 600 Nm) speak, despite the 2,184 kg…
As we will see in the dedicated section, the equipment is archi-complete and quite energy intensive from the entry level, while the Cx is announced at 0.28. We can therefore say that with a more processed aero and a reduced weight due to a reduced donation (but not penniless for all that), we could gain a few precious kg, so km of autonomy… We must believe that customers are looking for more comfort than energy performance, and thus ecology, which is paradoxical if they choose to go electric.