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Nissan Ariya delayed to 2022 amid lingering COVID-19, chip woes

The pandemic was one hurdle, but the chip shortage handed Nissan another obstacle to launch the electric SUV on time.

2022 Nissan Ariya EV
It's not happening this year, unfortunately.

Nissan's flagship electric SUV, the Ariya, will not reach dealers this year as it was supposed to. Citing lingering effects of the pandemic and the pervasive semiconductor chip shortage, Nissan confirmed with Roadshow on Friday the Ariya is subject to a delay.

Automotive News first reported on the delay on Friday, following comments from Nissan's Executive Vice President Asako Hoshino. She told reporters the Japanese launch will now happen "this winter" and added Europe and the US will see the EV a couple months after that. Nissan told Roadshow the US timeframe is now squarely in 2022. Reservations will open for the SUV later this year with deliveries starting sometime next year. Nissan originally targeted the middle of 2021 to bring the SUV to dealers.

While many automakers enjoy rocketing demand for new cars following the end of lockdown measures in the US, the chip shortage tossed a new problem at them. Now, numerous automakers have no choice but to idle production plants or ship vehicles without some features that rely on the chips. Too little supply and high demand pushed new and used car prices upward big time in the past few months.

For the Ariya, its delay comes as rivals quickly start launching their own EVs to tackle America's popular SUV segment. The Ford Mustang Mach-E and Volkswagen ID 4 beat Nissan to the punch, and Hyundai will put its Ioniq 5 on sale this fall in select states.