Last time we left off talking about the late 1980’s Nissan 300ZX, by this time the Nissan Z series had gained a tremendous amount of popularity in the field of car enthusiasts and sports car fans alike. And the fourth generation Z car was nothing different.
In 1990 Nissan released a new version of the 300ZX, this time a complete overhaul with the exception of the 3.0-liter V6 engine that was cranking out 222 HP. The big news for Z car lovers was the turbo variant, now upgraded to have twin Garrett turbochargers and dual intercoolers, now pushing out a daring 300 HP. Upon its release the 300ZX was a fan favorite, as well as critic favorite. It won Motor Trends “Import Car of the Year” in 1990, as well as “Top Ten Performance Cars of the Year”. Automobile Magazine honored the 300ZX as the “Design of the Year” and is apart of their “All-Star” list. The 300ZX was produced for seven years in America, and in the 1990 year the z car reached one million sales, making it the all-time best selling sports car.
In 1993, a convertible version of the 300ZX was released, marking the first convertible of the Nissan Z car series. This was a variant of the standard T-top that was available until then.
In 1996, as the fate of many Japanese sports cars of the time, the 300ZX began to slow production as a result of the rising Yen to Dollar ratio as well as the trend toward SUV sales. But the true killer of the 300ZX was its inflating price. It started at $30,000 and at the end of the 6 year run it was up to almost $50,000. This sent the overwhelmingly popular Z car into a 5 year hiatus.
In the next post we get into some of the thing that Nissan did to keep interest in the Z car while it was no longer in production, as well as the car that brought the Z back to life.