Although efficiency is paramount with the Nissan Ariya, it still boasts some considerable off-the-line oomph. The standard front-wheel drive version comes with a single electric motor that produces 214 hp and 221 lb.-ft. of torque, while the all-wheel drive setup gets an additional motor that boosts output to 335 hp and 413 lb.-ft. of torque. For those wanting to experience peak performance, the Ariya Engage+ trim generates 389 hp and 442 lb.-ft. of torque due to its more powerful motor. The Toyota bZ4X’s performance falls short by a long shot, with the FWD model only making 201 hp and 196 lb.-ft. of torque and the AWD version putting out just 214 hp and 248 lb.-ft. of torque.
The Ariya also has superior drive range. At its least efficient, it can travel 205 miles before needing a recharge, but at its peak, the range climbs to 304 miles. The bZ4X might have better range right out of the gate at 222 miles, but its peak range is 252 miles, meaning you’ll travel 52 fewer miles per charge than you would in the longest-range Ariya.
When we compared similar trim levels – in this case, the Ariya Engage and the bZ4X XLE – we found that the Nissan vehicle has the definitive edge with a lot more standard equipment, and especially premium features. Nissan equips the Engage with a heated steering wheel, heated front and rear seats, unique front badge illumination, a power-adjustable driver’s seat with position memory, a power-sliding center console, and a head-up display. It also gets a 24.6-inch digital dashboard that fuses a 12.3-inch gauge cluster and a 12.3-inch multimedia touchscreen with navigation and voice recognition.
Meanwhile, the bZ4X XLE lacks all those attributes, and its digital gauge cluster only measures out to 7 inches. Even though its infotainment system also features a 12.3-inch touchscreen, Toyota only covers the subscription fees for the navigation and voice recognition systems for three months; after the trial period, buyers will need to pay for a subscription if they wish to use those services. On another important note, the Ariya provides 2.8 cubic feet more cargo space than the bZ4X – a significant amount in this vehicle class.
The Ariya and the bZ4X are both stocked with an abundance of standard driving aids (such as forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, and automatic high beams). However, the Ariya’s standard Safety Shield 360 suite is more complete, as it also includes driver attention monitoring and ProPilot Assist with Navi-link, which is Nissan’s semi-automated hands-free driving system. Neither of those premium driver-assist technologies is available on the bZ4X.