Despite Nissan recently announcing it will boost efforts to bring electric vehicles to market, production of the automaker’s first electric SUV, the Nissan Ariya, is running one-third short of planned.
Nissan introduced the Ariya electric SUV in 2020, its second global electric vehicle, after establishing an early lead with the LEAF released in 2010 as one of the first mass-market EVs.
After climbing to become the top-selling electric vehicle across Europe in 2018, the LEAF has slowly faded into the background, with new fully electric cars from automakers like Tesla, Ford, GM, Hyundai, Volkswagen, and more hitting the market since then.
The Nissan Ariya was designed to spark life into the brand and carry it into the new era starting in 2021, and after several delays, it was finally released last year with an MSRP of $43,190.
Earlier this week, Electrek reported Nissan was voluntarily recalling 1,063 Ariya electric SUVs “out of an abundance of caution” after three incidents of the steering wheel coming loose or detaching completely.
According to a new report from Reuters, the Nissan Ariya is facing another setback, with supply shortages hindering production.
Nissan Ariya production bottlenecks
Three sources familiar with the matter along with planning notes reviewed by Reuters show Nissan Ariya production is running at least one-third below planned levels.
Part of Nissan’s new EV powertrain approach involves combining electric vehicle and hybrid model production on the same line, which is proving to be “an extremely, extremely high challenge,” according to one of the sources.
Furthermore, after a fire broke out at Chinese supplier Wuxi Welnew Micro-Electronic’s factory in January, Nissan has been facing a shortage of plating for electronic components.
The Ariya was part of Nissan’s initial Ambition 2030 EV strategy, which the Japanese automaker has since updated to bolster its electric offerings to include 19 new EVs by the end of the decade.
Nissan has aimed for production levels of around 400 Ariya EVs per day, which would amount to over 100,000 per year, but it’s expected to fall significantly short of that with the latest supply and manufacturing bottlenecks.