Skip to main content

Nissan’s taking a lightly modified Ariya from the North Pole to the South Pole

A husband and wife team are going to drive the Nissan Ariya EV 17,000 miles

If your idea of a road trip is like ours and involves packing up the family vehicle to drive a few hours to the beach, we’re not in the same ballpark as Nissan. The Japanese automaker’s idea of a road trip involves taking a modified all-electric Ariya from the North Pole to the South Pole. That trip, if you’re wondering, spans 17,000 miles. Crazy? You bet, but also in a great way.

To complete the trip, Nissan is partnering with Artic Trucks and the husband-and-wife team of Chris and Julie Ramsey. Artic Trucks, as one would guess from the name, specializes in creating vehicles that are meant to get through inhospitable terrain and are masters of their craft at polar expedition vehicles. Together, Nissan and Artic Trucks have come together to create the Ariya you see here – a roided gym rat compared to the regular electric SUV.

Nissan claims that modifications that were done to the Ariya “have been intentionally minimal,” but we have to assume that it’s winking when it says that. I mean, look at the thing. It’s riding on 39-inch tires, fender flares that are wider than ones found on 700-horsepower trucks that never see dirt, and has a militaryesque roof rack that’s meant to be a hub for launching drones. Plus, the SUV was fitted with long-travel suspension. This thing clearly looks like it’s ready for some serious off-roading, so we wouldn’t call the modifications minimal.

One thing that Nissan didn’t touch is the Ariya’s powertrain, though the automaker didn’t specify what powertrain the modified Ariya has. We assume it’s the all-wheel drive e-4ORCE with two electric motors and the 87-kWh battery pack. In that configuration, the Nissan electric SUV makes 389 horsepower and 442 pound-feet of torque and has a range of roughly 270 miles.

If you’re wondering how the Nissan Ariya will get electricity on the 17,000-mile trip, you’re asking the right question. The electric SUV will be towing a “portable, renewable energy unit” that will be used to charge the Ariya. Nissan states that the towable prototype features a lightweight wind turbine and solar panels to provide the SUV with juice while the explorers catch their breaths.

Chris and Julie Ramsey set to take a Nissan Ariya on an epic adventure | Pole to Pole

We’re all for adventures, but this sounds like a really ambitious one. It’s more akin to what Lewis and Clark were doing in the 1800s than modern-day adventuring. Going from one end of the earth to the other is difficult; doing it in an electric SUV without spare parts or a recovery vehicle sounds nuts. But this isn’t the first time the Ramseys have done something like this. They were the first people to complete the 10,500-mile Mongol Rally in a modified all-electric Leaf hatchback.

The journey will begin later this month and is expected to span 10 months. If you’re interested in following the team on their adventure, you can follow the husband and wife team on Instagram.

Editors' Recommendations

Joel Patel
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Joel Patel is a former contributor for The Manual. His work has also been featured on Autoweek, Digital Trends, Autoblog…
Survey: Tesla drivers love their cars but not Elon Musk
Musk seems to be alienating Tesla drivers, according to a new poll
Tesla Model 3 and Model Y parked in front of a city skyline on a runway.

Elon Musk is as much a part of Tesla as a battery pack, motor, or a misleading demonstration video, but a recent survey by Bloomberg has indicated the EV company’s customer base may have had enough of its billionaire owner.

The new survey is a follow up from a 2019 survey that involves a 130-question sheet that the news outlet handed to 5,000 Tesla customers. Opinions of Musk back then were pretty positive. Fast forward four years, and Tesla is still the planet’s most popular EV brand. But the public opinion of its owner has not fared as well.

Read more is exposing how greedy car dealerships really are – here’s how (and why)
Who are the masked vigilantes behind logo and feature image - a laptop showing the site

While it's lean times for global carmakers, scrounging for scarce chips and parts, it’s prosperous days for auto dealers. Sitting in the Goldilocks zone between cash-fat post-pandemic consumers and a shortage of vehicles coming from atop, car sellers are living through an ascendant present, getting the most out of car sales.

Profit reports from the first quarter of 2022 indicated dealerships were seeing an upswing in profits. In May 2022, Haig Partners, which advises both buyers and sellers of car dealerships and dealership groups, found that the average gross profit per new vehicle sold was $6,244. In turn, the average publicly owned dealership made $7.1 million in the 12 months leading up to March 2022. Unfortunately, money begets greed, and there have been reports of price-gouging. Consumers who were already dealing with higher fuel prices, elevated interest rates, and declining GDP now had to deal with more expensive vehicles. Fortunately, a solution for those looking to buy new cars emerged.

Read more
Pirelli unveils all-new Scorpion MS, an all-season tire for ‘premium and prestige’ SUVs
Your next SUV purchase might already have these new Pirelli Scorpion MS tires
A close up of the new Pirelli Scorpion MS tire

Pirelli is a tire manufacturer known for its cutting-edge technology and premium-quality products. With a legacy spanning over a century, Pirelli tires have earned their reputation through a relentless commitment to research and innovation and delivering high-performance tires that meet drivers' demands worldwide. 

In addition, their focus on safety, durability, and exceptional grip has made them a trusted choice for luxury and high-performance vehicles, including SUVs, cementing their position as a leading name in the automotive industry.

Read more