Nissan's electric crossover concept is coming to market, with few alterations.
Nissan, the company that arguably kick-started the EV craze with the launch of the world's first mass-market EV, has been outclassed. While Tesla continues to grow at a rapid clip and the segment braces for impact from newcomers like Rivian and Lordstown Motor Corp., the Nissan Leaf trundles along humbly, largely overlooked.
Nissan's answer to this is an all-new battery-electric vehicle, the Nissan Ariya - a pure-electric crossover previewed by a concept of the same name at last year's Tokyo Motor Show. Half-a-year later, we've now been given our first look at the production version of this all-important electric utility vehicle, thanks to an international design patent filing.
Seen here, the patent renderings were first shared by Instagram user car_secrets, and they depict a very familiar Murano-esque shape. Changes from the concept presented in Tokyo back in 2019 are minimal, and include a small pair of lights mounted low within the front fascia's slim triangular cutouts, tow hook covers at the front and rear, and a roof-mounted antenna - a feature left off of the 2019 concept vehicle.
There are no side mirrors on these patent renderings, suggesting that Nissan could be looking at giving the Ariya side-mounted cameras in some markets. Don't hold your breath for such cameras to be offered here in the US, though. For the time being, they're still illegal.
The production Nissan Ariya is expected to debut in the flesh sometime next year, with a pure-electric range close to 300 miles or so and a $40,000 starting price. That price tag will put it not far off from the Nissan Leaf, but with loads more space and versatility - a potent combination that could make it an easier sell in markets like the US, where the crossover segment continues to enjoy rampant demand.
We'll know more in the coming months, so stay tuned.