And what a glorious live debut it was.
The 2022 Nissan Ariya all-electric crossover was revealed back in November 2019 and has yet to reach dealerships. This will soon change. Pre-orders have been underway since late last year and a US sales launch is due to get underway in the second half of this year. Nissan has apparently already started the advertising campaign by bringing an Ariya to the Circuit de Monaco.
This was the first time it's been shown in public, which makes sense because there haven't exactly been live auto shows for over a year. The Ariya comes standard with a 65-kWh battery or an optional 87-kWh unit, which should be good enough to deliver around a 300-mile range on the EPA test cycle.
Bringing the Ariya to Monaco provided Nissan an opportunity to show off its handling capabilities as well as its sleek coupe-like appearance. It looked perfectly home on the French Riviera.
"Ariya's public driving in the streets of Monaco is a great way to witness the capabilities of our e-4ORCE technology," said Arnaud Charpentier, Nissan's VP of Product and Strategy in Europe. "Ariya is the epitome of Nissan's innovation in electric mobility and this event marks a defining moment in the next chapter of Nissan's EV journey."
The Ariya, of course, is not Nissan's first foray into the world of EVs. That honor belongs to the Leaf, now in its second generation.
But the Ariya is a very different type of EV than the aging Leaf hatchback. Because it's a crossover, it'll have far greater appeal in every market it'll be sold. Its chief rivals will be the Volkswagen ID.4 and the Tesla Model Y. Official US pricing hasn't been announced though it's widely expected to begin at around $40,000, if not slightly less.
Unfortunately, Nissan has used up its $7,500 federal tax credits so customers will have to rely on discounts from state-level credits instead. But this could change if the Biden administration reinstates the federal credit, a program both Tesla and General Motors have been lobbying for. Over in Europe, around 34,000 people have signaled interest in buying an Ariya. Nissan USA has also launched a dedicated page where prospective owners can sign up for additional product details.