Nissan just debuted its first major EV since the Leaf took the world by storm in 2010, and it may be a game-changer for the struggling brand

Torri Donley

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

  • Nissan unveiled its first all-electric crossover, the Ariya, during an online event on Wednesday.

  • It’s the first major EV debut from the brand since it launched the Leaf all the way back in 2010. 

  • According to Nissan, it will have up to 300 miles of range, two battery options, and an all-wheel-drive version. 

  • The Ariya will go on sale in the US in late 2021 with a starting price around $40,000.

  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Nissan just unveiled its first all-new electric vehicle in close to a decade, and it’s set to put the brand on the map in the growing electric-SUV space. 

The Ariya — which Nissan showed off through an online event on Wednesday — is the brand’s debut electric crossover, and its first major EV debut since the Leaf in 2010. At a starting price point of roughly $40,000, the Ariya will compete most closely with the electric versions of the Hyundai Kona and Kia Niro when it hits dealerships late next year. 

Nissan said the Ariya’s introduction marks a “key milestone” in its plan to develop “Nissan’s reputation for innovation, craftsmanship, customer focus, and quality.” That four-year plan is also intended to help it achieve “sustainable growth, financial stability and profitability by the end of fiscal-year 2023.” The debut comes as Nissan is struggling in the face of declining sales and earnings that began long before the coronavirus pandemic hit. 

But the new EV — which Nissan says will have up to 300 miles of range, two battery options, advanced driver-assistance tech, and a dual-motor version — may turn that around. 

Keep scrolling to take a closer look at the Nissan Ariya.

Nissan just held its first major EV debut in nearly a decade, and it’s a sleek entrant to the growing field of electric SUVs.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

The Ariya — which launched virtually on Wednesday — is Nissan’s debut all-electric crossover and will join the Leaf EV in its lineup.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Nissan was early to the EV market, rolling out the first-generation Leaf all the way back in 2010.

A Nissan Leaf being charged up on the streets on London.
A Nissan Leaf being charged up on the streets on London.

Miles Willis/Stringer

The Leaf has been a big seller for Nissan and got total overhaul for 2018, but still, the company finds itself playing catch-up amid the rising wave of electric SUVs hitting in recent years.

Nissan Leaf
Nissan Leaf

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

The Leaf hit the scene back when it was understood that electric and hybrid cars had to differentiate themselves from the pack with “futuristic” and unusual designs.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

It was launched before the Tesla Model S proved to manufacturers and consumers that EVs can be cool.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

But now the somewhat-outdated hatchback has a slick big sibling to compete with the likes of the Hyundai Kona and Kia Niro EV, and possibly more upscale SUV offerings like the Audi e-Tron and Tesla Model Y.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Nissan estimates the Ariya’s range at approximately 300 miles, which is impressive. But that figure hasn’t been confirmed by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

The Leaf, for its part, gets an EPA-estimated range of 226 miles in its longest-range configuration.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

The company hasn’t yet specified how long the Ariya takes to charge, but did say there will be two battery options to choose from: a 63-kWh pack and a longer-range, 87-kWh unit.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Plus, in a huge step forward from the Leaf, the Ariya will have options for front-wheel drive or a dual-motor all-wheel-drive setup, puzzlingly named “e-4ORCE.”

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Depending on the configuration chosen, the Ariya will make between 215 and 389 horsepower, along with 221 to 443 pound-feet of torque, Nissan says.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Like the Leaf, the Ariya benefits from Nissan’s “e-Pedal” system, which lets drivers accelerate, decelerate, and stop all with one pedal.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Nissan has also equipped the Ariya with its latest driver-assist feature, ProPilot 2.0.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

The first version of the system could keep drivers in their lane and had adaptive cruise control.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

According to Nissan, the 2.0 version allows drivers to take their hands off the wheel under certain conditions, and assists with lane changes and passing.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

And all that tech comes wrapped up in a sleek and stylish package that’s especially attractive in this rose-gold paint job.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Inside, the Ariya sports a minimalist look …

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

… complete with a smooth, sparse dash …

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

… and a row of haptic buttons.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

The Ariya sports two 12.3-inch displays and will receive over-the-air firmware updates.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

It’s set to hit US dealerships in late 2021, with a starting price of roughly $40,000.

Nissan Ariya.
Nissan Ariya.

Nissan

Read the original article on Business Insider

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