Tokyo auto show reveals for Ariya and MX-30 electric vehicles

MX-30 is Mazda’s first electric vehicle image via: Mazda

Tokyo is a global technology hub and its auto show always debuts some of the best future vehicle concepts.

At the 2019 Tokyo show, the theme has been revealed to be electric mobility and some of Japan’s legacy automotive companies are accelerating their transformation to battery power.

Amidst all the radical concept vehicles, there are also nearly production ready vehicles and two of the most important amongst these are from Mazda and Nissan.

Both feature battery powered drivetrains and crossover design proportions.

Tokyo welcomes the future for Nissan

Ariya is about the size of a current Nissan SUV
Think of Ariya as an electric X-Trail of sorts image via: Nissan

Nissan was one of the first global vehicle brands to embrace electric vehicle technology with its Leaf. The appeal of a traditional battery powered hatchback is rather limited, though.

With the market demand being for vehicles of the SUV/crossover shape and configuration, Nissan has now finally responded with its Ariya concept, at the Tokyo auto show.

In terms of size the Ariya is 90mm shorter than a current Nissan X-Trail, but 100mm wider. The design is strikingly futuristic, with a textured 3D graphic front treatment, which mimics the feel of a traditional radiator grille.

One of the primary challenges for electric vehicle designers, concern front styling, where the traditional engine cooling grille is no longer required. With Ariya, Nissan has shown where it is trending with its new grille replacement design.

Although battery capacity and energy output have not been specified, the Ariya is powered by a pair of electric motors, mounted on each axle, which gifts it all-wheel drive capability. Nissan has committed to a production future for the Ariya.

Tokyo hosts a Mazda first

MX-30 gains suicide door design
MX-30 doors making getting in and out very easy image via: Mazda

Aside from Nissan, the other significant reveal at the 2019 Tokyo auto show has been from Mazda.

Similar in size and purpose to its CX-30 crossover, the new MX-30 is Mazda’s first official electric vehicle and it has some very trick doors.

Mazda engineers have equipped the MX-30 with swing-doors which open to 82-degrees, making it incredibly easy to access the crossover’s cabin.

The MX-30 is a virtually production ready vehicle and features a 35.5kWh battery pack, which drives a 106kW electric motor.

Range isn’t great, at only 200km, but it does promise a spirited drive, with advanced torque vectoring technology. Recharging should be swift, thanks to an electric architecture which can accept 150kW fast-charging capability.

Mazda is expected to launch the MX-30 to customers by 2020.

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