When it comes to electrification (besides the Leaf, of course), Nissan has been a bit slow. But now, it’s finally starting to electrify its lineup with the new Nissan Ariya. The Ariya is a crossover that is similar in size to the Ford Mustang Mach-E, the Kia EV6, and of course the Tesla Model Y.
If you’re in the market for a new electric car, you may be wondering whether you should go for the now-ubiquitous Tesla Model Y or stick with the new Nissan Ariya. Both cars appear to be more tech-focused, however, while the Ariya builds on Nissan’s decades of experience in the automotive industry, the Model Y takes a fresh approach to its car, at least compared to the competition.
So which electric car is right for your needs? Here’s everything you need to know.
The Nissan Ariya and the Tesla Model Y take very different approaches to design. If you’ve ever seen a Tesla before, you’ll immediately recognize the Model Y – it offers the same design language as Tesla’s other cars, with a relatively minimalist look and feel. It has slim headlights at the front, a nice rounded roofline and flush door handles which give it a sleek look overall.
The Nissan Ariya takes a slightly more traditional approach. It looks a lot like the previous generation of gas-powered cars, even with a fake grille on the front. Although design is somewhat subjective, the car may look a little incongruous with the sloping roofline at the top and a much larger body than you might expect.
That doesn’t mean it’s ugly by any means – but if you’re looking for something completely fresh and modern, the Nissan Ariya may not be for you. That said, design is subjective and not everyone likes the look of a Tesla. it’s a tie.
internal and technical
The distinct design approach also extends to the cars’ interiors. The interior of the Tesla Model Y is minimalistic and scaled-back, putting most of the controls in the infotainment system rather than offering physical controls for things like climate. Some people will consider this look sleek – but I generally prefer physical controls, except on those rare occasions where companies actually do digital controls correctly.
However, the Model Y is quite tech-heavy. The car has a large 15.4-inch display at the front, with a relatively well-designed and easy-to-use operating system. From here, you’ll get access to Tesla’s cameras, driver-assistance features, and mapping.
The Nissan Ariya, again, takes a more traditional approach. There are many more physical controls and buttons for instruments and infotainment along with dual 12.3-inch displays on the front. The car’s software is not as well designed as Tesla’s, but it does support CarPlay via wireless connection, unlike Tesla, which does not support CarPlay at all.
Ultimately, interior design is subjective, but it can’t be denied that the Model Y offers more and better technology.
Winner: Tesla Model Y
The Tesla Model Y and Nissan Ariya both benefit from that electric car zip, but they don’t perform as well. For starters, the Nissan Ariya is available in several different powertrain and battery size options, all with slightly different performance and range numbers. Nissan doesn’t actually advertise a zero to 60 time, but MotorTrend noted that the single-motor version went from zero to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds, while the dual-motor configuration hit that speed in 5 seconds. That’s quick time.
But not as fast as some variants of the Model Y. The standard Model Y is capable of going from zero to 60 in 6.6 seconds, but upgrade to the Model Y Long Range, and you’ll reach 60 in just 4.8 seconds. Step up one more step to the Model Y Performance and you’ll hit 60 mph in an astonishing 3.5 seconds.
Winner: Tesla Model Y
Range and charging
The range of these cars is also different. The Nissan Ariya’s range ranges from 205 miles to a far more livable 304 miles, although to get that, you’ll have to pay for the higher-end model. Unfortunately, it doesn’t charge very quickly; The maximum rate is 130 kW, which is quite low.
Tesla has once again taken things forward. The Model Y has a range of between 260 miles for the base model and 330 miles for the Long Range model. Add the fact that the car can charge at up to 250kW (and has access to the Supercharger network), and there’s a clear winner here.
Winner: Tesla Model Y
Pricing and Availability
Both the Tesla Model Y and the Nissan Ariya are available now, and you can get either of them through their respective channels. The prices are also the same. At the time of this writing, the Nissan Ariya starts at a little over $43,000, while the Model Y starts at around $44,000.
The price difference is minimal, but cheaper is cheaper.
Winner: Nissan Ariya
Overall Winner: Tesla Model Y
This is a very clear win for Tesla. The Nissan Ariya is not a bad car – far from it. But the Tesla Model Y reflects Tesla’s experience here. Even without considering design, the Model Y has better performance and longer range – two things that are important for a good electric car experience. If you’re looking for an electric crossover and are deciding between the Tesla Model Y and the Nissan Ariya, the Model Y is the way to go.