After a long awaited hiatus, the Nissan Z returns. This time with a whole new attitude and design. Are you ready? Because here we go!!
Renault’s purchase of Nissan came with a promise from Carlos Goshen claiming he would build the Nissan Z… He delivered on that promise. In August of 2001 Nissan introduced the Z Concept at the North American International Auto Show. It was bright orange, catching the eye of everyone with it’s squat, long hood, that was a result of a Nissan design studio battle. Shortly after the Nissan Z Concept would go into production, with a targeted base price of only $30,000.
The newest Nissan Z Car was released in the summer of 2002. The 350Z. It had a quick success. An improved 3.5 Liter V6 engine that produced 287 HP and 274 Lb-Ft. of Torque originally powered the New Nissan 350Z. Nissan also conquered another mark, by releasing the 350Z at only $26,000, well below the $30,000 mark they had set during the concept period. The 350Z was released as only a two-seater hard top in 2002.
Over the next few years many trims were released, some including convertible versions, a Nismo version, Touring, and Grand Touring and a track version. The Touring and Grand Touring were the luxury versions of the already luxurious sports car. The Nismo and Track versions were equipped with may sports and racing packages that included turbochargers, brake systems, and much more. By 2008 the 350Z had been given a little more power with a 3.5 Liter dual intake engine that had an output of 306HP.
This now brings us to our current Nissan Z car. The 370Z. Stay tuned for our last chapter in the Nissan Z.
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.