The 2023 Nissan Ariya has been recalled for a software issue that could cause the loss of drive power.
The Ariya launched for the 2023 model year after several delays, so the recall population is fairly small, at 9,813 potentially affected units including both single-motor front-wheel-drive and dual-motor all-wheel-drive models.
In these vehicles, “there is a potential that conductive fibrous shavings from the drive motors’ slip ring assembly can momentarily short circuit the two slip rings,” according to the NHTSA. While these shavings instantly burn out without causing damage, a fail-safe protocol reducing power still occurs because the inverter detects the momentary over-current due to the short circuit.
If this fail-safe protocol is triggered, torque to the driven wheels will be cut off until the vehicle is powered off and restarted, according to the NHTSA. The loss of power will be accompanied by an “EV System Off” message on the dashboard.
The Ariya is compatible with over-the-air updates for the entire vehicle, Nissan has told Green Car Reports, but it appears that the brand might not have yet enabled inverter-related changes. Nissan is telling owners of affected vehicles that they will have to take them to dealerships, where the inverter software will be reprogrammed free of charge.
This sounds similar to the circumstances under which VW had to recall earlier ID.4 models. It also needed to perform that software update in person.
The issue stems from the unique motor design used in the Ariya, and it doesn’t affect the Nissan Leaf, the automaker’s only other electrified model. The Ariya and Leaf aren’t at all related—and they even use different DC fast-charging standards. The Ariya used the Combined Charging Standard (CCS) while the older Leaf sticks with the CHAdeMO standard.
In a review, we found that the single-motor Nissan Ariya may be one of the most refined vehicles Nissan makes. A test drive review showed the all-wheel-drive version adds a lot of performance without compromising comfort.
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