The Legendary Nissan Z Is All-New Once Again
Here's what you need to know.
1. The Nissan Z is all-new once again, and was revealed yesterday.
2. It has a twin-turbo 3.0 L V6 engine and a 6-speed manual transmission.
3. It's expected to go on sale in 2021.
The new Nissan Z Proto was unveiled yesterday, after a plethora of teaser footage and images. It will go head to head with the Toyota Supra, and shows that Nissan hasn't completely given up on their sports cars. Similar to rivals, it will have a manual transmission (#savethemanuals).
Z's Through The Past
The Nissan Z is not new, and was first introduced in 1970 as the Nissan 240Z, which set the brand for success in the coming decade. Since then, Z's have been redesign and engineered, until the 370Z came around. Worry set in when Carlos Ghosn's scandalous departure caused financial desperation, and was essentially the cause of the outdated 370Z, among other reasons. Finally the Z35 generation 400Z is here.
The new Z proto is longer than the outgoing 370Z, by 5 inches to be exact. The Nissan head of design Alfonso Albaisa says "We don't use the word retro, it's more of an homage." And that it is, a homage, and includes styling cues from older Z's. For example, the headlights, which look to be inspired by the 240Z, and the taillights, styled after the 300ZX. All in all, the new Z is stunning, and certainly doesn't disappoint.
The new Z is set to be powered by a twin-turbo V6 which is, as chief product specialist Hiroshi Tamura says, a modified version of the VR30DDTT unit which is available in both the 300- and 400-hp states of tune in the Infiniti Q50 and Q60. In addition, a NISMO version may arrive at some point, as it has in the past. Excitingly, a 6-speed manual transmission will be standard, making it a great Toyota Supra, which only has an automatic, alternative. Of course, an automatic transmission will be optional, but no one cares about that.
Moving into the cabin of the Z, some change has occurred. A new infotainment screen and system, semi-new styling, and a three-gauge binnacle on the dashboard has all been added.
Pricing hasn't been confirmed yet, but I expect it to be around the $45,000 mark. That price will allow it to compete with the lower level Supra's, while still being fairly affordable.
It's great that the Nissan Z is back, but there is one worry - Nissan is making it. If Nissan builds the Z like they do the Altima and Rogue, it will be crap. Hopefully Nissan can step up their build quality. We'll just have to see.