Nissan's Nismo Division

Is Nissan’s Nismo Division Finally Going Electric? Menacing Nissan Ariya Spotted Testing at the ‘Ring

Last year, Nissan’s Chief for Europe, Guillaume Cartier, made public the brand’s plans to introduce sporty electric vehicles bearing the Nismo badge. Fast forward to today, and it seems that the company has commenced road and track testing for its first such model.

What we have before us is a sportier iteration of the Nissan Ariya. This electric crossover boasts several visual upgrades that contribute to its more muscular appearance, distinctly reminiscent of Nismo.

Compared to the standard versions, this variant features a redesigned bumper with reshaped side vents. The lower intake is smaller and equipped with a substantial apron, presumably designed to enhance aerodynamics during high-speed driving. The side skirts appear to have been modified at the rear, and there’s a new rear diffuser with what seems to be a motorsport-inspired additional brake light integrated into the middle.

Nissan's Nismo Division
Nissan’s Nismo Division

Another notable addition is the spoiler mounted above the taillights. The five double-spoke wheels, likely shod with stickier tires, differ from the ones typically found on the Ariya. If this is indeed the rumored Nismo version of the otherwise quiet crossover, we can anticipate further enhancements. This might include chassis adjustments to lower the ground clearance, and it remains to be seen whether beefier brakes will be part of the sporty upgrade.

However, the latter aspect hinges on whether the Ariya Nismo will receive a power boost. The current top-tier Ariya already delivers up to 389 horsepower (395 PS/290 kW) and 442 pound-feet (599 Nm) of torque from its all-wheel-drive electric powertrain, enabling it to accelerate from 0-60 mph (0-97 kph) in 4.8 seconds. This powertrain is a strong candidate for a potential Nismo model, but for a clear distinction from lower trims, it might require even more power.

Beyond the visual enhancements, potential chassis revisions, and expected power increase, the Nissan Ariya Nismo will likely receive several interior upgrades. These could include sporty front seats, new upholstery and trim options, and possibly a dedicated driving mode. While Nissan’s engineers and designers could incorporate further enhancements, these seem like the most logical updates.

The exact unveiling date for this performance-focused electric crossover remains unknown, but it’s likely to debut next year. We anticipate it will be available in the United States, becoming the most expensive variant of the Ariya lineup. The current top-of-the-line model is priced at $60,190, and depending on the additional features it receives, the Ariya Nismo could surpass $70,000 or even $80,000.

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