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2023 Nissan Ariya Platinum+ e-4ORCE

Nissan was at the forefront of the electric revolution, launching the first mass-produced fully-electric vehicle at the start of the previous decade, the Nissan Leaf quickly became a popular vehicle amongst EV enthusiasts for its affordable price, small design, and overall range. We drove the Leaf in its second generation several years ago, but the future is in Nissan's next-generation technology found in their CMF-EV platform shared with Renault and Mitsubishi. We had the chance to drive their first EV SUV, the 2023 Nissan ARIYA Platinum+ e-4orce.

It's important to note for our readers in the United States that the Platinum+ here in Canada is slightly different, not coming with the full leather seating or blue dash/door trim. We'd need to step up to the Premiere to get the cosmetic upgrades.

The Nissan ARIYA represents the future for the Japanese brand, integrating their current design language in a vehicle that was developed as a benchmark for their electrification plans. This version comes with two motors, good for 290 kW or 389 horsepower, and 442 lb-ft of torque. Nissan estimates the range to be around 423 kms in ideal conditions, however in the single digit temperatures we were experiencing here in Southwestern Ontario at the start of December we were getting closer to 350 kms total. This is about what we'd expect from an 87 kWh lithium-ion battery-powered vehicle such as this.

So is there a stand out feature of the Nissan ARIYA? Perhaps not, but the big takeaway from my week with this EV was how good it performed as an EV. Sounds funny, right? But you'd be surprised how many electrified vehicles we've tested that don't do the EV-stuff very well. The ARIYA checked off all the boxes for what we look for in a good electric car:

  • Easy Climate Scheduling

  • Fast-Charge pre-conditioning

  • One-Pedal drive mode

  • Brake-regen mode

  • Driver-only climate function

  • No silly propulsion sounds (outside of mandated pedestrian alert)

  • CCS Combo Port (Leaf used CHaDeMo)

  • 7.2 kW Level 2 Charging

  • 130 kW DCFC

We even achieved better than anticipated energy efficiency during our time, recording 21.9 kWh on our 100km test loop, and managed to get back to the GTA to drop this vehicle off with more than half the range left, a 175 km drive. As far as electric cars go, the Nissan ARIYA stands out as being a well-rounded offering with all the important elements available. There are a couple downsides. One is price. Our test vehicle cost $72,343.00 as configured, which is close in price to a similarly-equipped 2023 Ford Mustang Mach-E, about $5-6k more than a Hyundai IONIQ 5 or Kia EV6, and about $10,000 more than a Volkswagen ID.4 Pro S AWD. ARIYA is one of the more expensive EVs on the market, and while it's a great EV, it doesn't justify its price by being an ok car.

For one the interior space is tight. I know I'm a large person so I don't necessarily represent the average driver, but I do represent a segment of drivers who have space restrictions. I had my seat as low as possible and I was touching the roof, I had to either slouch to fit or suffer sitting too high up. The rest of the interior space felt tight compared with other EVs we've tested in the segment.

The infotainment system on the ARIYA is also outdated, feeling similar to the 2016 Nissan Juke NISMO we drove years ago for TestDrive Showdown. Camera quality is low and the front camera's view is partially obstructed by the illuminated Nissan badge. While we don't expect the interior space to be addressed on this vehicle, we do hope Nissan will work to improve their in-car technology experience. We had issues with the ProPILOT steering assist as well, making us disable it within the first 30 minutes of our highway driving. The system requires the driver to hold onto the steering wheel, but on straight patches of road with no real steering input or correction required the system will alert that the driver isn't holding the wheel, requiring a relatively forceful pull to either direction. We recommend keeping the steering assist & lane centring off.

For more on the 2023 Nissan ARIYA Platinum+ e-4ORCE you can watch our full tour and review on our YouTube Channel:


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