Nissan Ariya Nismo ready to give Tesla Model Y Performance a new rival
A new version of the Nissan Ariya SUV has been spotted testing with a racier bodykit and expected performance upgrades
The hot electric SUV space is heating up as Nissan is preparing to reveal an all-new high-performance version of its Ariya family crossover. The Nissan Ariya Nismo is set to be the second zero-emissions model to get the ‘Nismo’ treatment, after the Japan-only Nissan Leaf Nismo.
Spied testing on European roads, the new Nissan Ariya Nismo will get a much more aggressive bodykit than the standard car. Development models may be sporting heavy camouflage, but it’s easy to see the more aggressive front and rear bumpers, as well as the two new spoilers dressing the bootlid.
The Ariya Nismo test mule pictured here can also be seen riding on redesigned 20-inch alloy wheels; these are the same size as the ones already fitted to high-spec versions of Nissan’s electric family SUV, but are wrapped in much stickier Michelin Pilot Sport EV rubber – no doubt giving the car a little more grip for tearing up twisty roads.
We don’t expect the changes to be solely skin deep, either; previous Nismo models have featured tweaked suspension setups and upgraded brakes and it’s not too farfetched to suggest the Nismo-tuned Ariya will get similar improvements, too.
In terms of power, the current top-of-the-line Nissan Ariya e-4ORCE Evolve+ already outputs a substantial 389bhp, enough to propel the two-tonne electric SUV from 0-62mph in 5.1 seconds. A tune from Nismo could easily push this figure over the 400bhp mark and bring the sprint to 62mph down under five seconds. While this is still nowhere near as fast as a Tesla Model Y Performance, it’d make the hot Ariya more than quick enough to keep up with the likes of the Volkswagen ID.4 GTX and Skoda Enyaq vRS.
With Nissan remaining tight-lipped about this potential new flagship for the Ariya lineup, it’s fair to suggest that this new model is still quite a way off being revealed. An unveiling in early 2024 could see the Ariya Nismo go on sale later that year, with prices most likely starting from well north of £60,000.
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