First Drive Review: Nissan ARIYA

Independent review by Chris Russon

4-minute read

Nissan ARIYA Exterior Front Driving

First Drive: Nissan ARIYA

Explore the key features of the Nissan ARIYA in our expert first drive review

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The Nissan ARIYA leads the way for the Japanese brand's EV charge, and if the ARIYA is anything to go by, then there's no doubt it will be a successful one.


  • Eye-catching looks
  • Impressive EV range
  • Loads of tech
  • Good degree of practicality
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Nissan is stepping up its electrification strategy with a new battery-powered SUV crossover called the ARIYA, heralding a new breed of EV for the Japanese brand.

The ARIYA is made in Nissan’s homeland, and it's out to rival the likes of the Volkswagen ID.4, the Mercedes-Benz EQC and the new Kia Niro EV, to name but a few.

It's powered by a 160kW motor with a 63kWh battery, or a more powerful 178kW version with a larger 87kWh battery. An all-wheel drive e-4orce variant, which develops 225kW and has twice the amount of torque, is also available.

The ARIYA is Nissan’s second pure EV following on from the LEAF which was launched back in 2010 when it became a pioneer for the electric age.

Since then, Nissan has gone on to sell more than 600,000 LEAF models and now is setting out to grow its slice of the EV market with the ARIYA which will become its new electric flagship.

Design and Practicality

With batteries positioned under the floor, the ARIYA is roomy and very modern inside, with haptic buttons on the dash and centre console – just one of its high-tech features.

Recharging can be done to 80 percent capacity in around 30 minutes from a fast charger, while boot space is 466 litres with all seats in use for the 2WD versions and 408 litres for the all-wheel-drive. The absence of a transmission tunnel makes for even more room in the cabin.

The cabin also features a sliding centre console that moves front to aft by some six inches and sits behind electrically opening storage bins in the dashboard.

A state-of-the-art instrument panel uses two screens joining together to become almost a 25-inch double screen below a head-up display.

The charging port is over the front wheel arch which is ideal for most home charging set up and the cables stow conveniently in the boot.


0 to 62mph acceleration takes 7.5 seconds in the base model, while the all-wheel drive e-4ORCE model with the larger 87kWh battery is even quicker, taking a lively 5.7 seconds to complete the sprint.

Top speed for the two-wheel drive versions is 100mph, while the AWD model can manage 124mph.

Nissan is claiming a range of up to 329 miles for the ARIYA with the bigger battery, 310 miles for the e-4ORCE, and 250 miles for the 63kWh car.

Driving Experience

Nissan’s ProPilot, ePedal and automatic parking systems are fitted, as on other Nissan EVs, while on the road the ARIYA is incredibly quiet.

I tried out a 63kWH ARIYA in the higher of the two trims, and it performed faultlessly over a 100-mile drive.

Starting off on a full charge showing 237 miles range, it completed the run with 105 miles remaining on the trip computer – so almost smack on the official data.

On the handling front, the ARIYA exhibited no bad habits and overall it's very straightforward and easy to drive given the amount of technology that is onboard.
Chris Russon


Among the current crop of advanced EVs, the ARIYA is keenly priced, competitive on all fronts, and a handsome car to boot – well-placed to cement Nissan’s position as a pioneer of the new age of motoring alongside its other hybrid and electric offerings.