Nissan selling track-ready 370Z NISMO RC

October 27th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

It’s not only Ferrari and Porsche that can offer keen customers highly-priced race-spec versions of their performance production models. Nissan wants a piece of the pie and has just released a new 370Z NISMO RC that is now available for customer orders.

Based on the street-legal 370Z, the NISMO RC has been taken to the extreme with major weight-saving measures dropping off all luxuries. The result is a car that’s around 180kg lighter and tips the scales at just 1,339kg.

The Nissan 370Z NISMO RC also features NISMO race exhaust, NISMO tuned ECM, high capacity NISMO clutch, flywheel, engine oil, transmission and differential coolers and a Recaro racing seat with 6-point racing harness. A Sparco racing steering wheel and a carbon fibre control stack are also part of the RC package.

The 3.7-litre V6 motor has been tweaked to produce slightly more than the stock unit at 264kW of power and 373Nm of torque. Continue reading “Nissan selling track-ready 370Z NISMO RC” »

Nissan 370Z races Mexican chicken for TV ad (+video)

April 27th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

So you thought you were pretty choice that time you dragged your mate off at the lights, or that time you blew away that V8 Commodore through some twisty back roads. Well that’s all good, but you aren’t nothing till you’ve battled a fully trained Mexican racing chicken.

That’s right – a Mexican racing chicken, they’re out there and they are fast little critters. Nissan UK got involved recently and put it’s latest 370Z up against a racing chicken in a straight-up race for a TV advertisment. It was a brave move with the chicken expected to be quicker through the corners but the Z car has more power, through its 6-cylinder motor, on the straights.

The ad sets the scene for the race in a bleak underworld where poultry is put up against metal in reckless racing matches for bragging rights. This Mexican racing chicken goes by the name ‘Pepe’ and he’s not like the Tegal number 6 job you have in your freezer at home, he’s the real deal and Nissan really should have entered its GT-R into this battle to guarantee victory. Can the 370Z do it?

Think this is a joke, well you better watch the clip below and find out. Continue reading “Nissan 370Z races Mexican chicken for TV ad (+video)” »

Nissan upgrades 370Z with new GT Edition

March 9th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Nissan’s latest Z car the 370Z is certainly a looker and has the power to match but it isn’t getting any younger. To stretch out the lifespan of the Japanese sportscar Nissan’s announced an update of the 370Z Coupe, initially for the European market. For the new model year, Nissan is introducing a number of suspension, transmission and equipment improvements for the entire 370Z Coupe range while also adding a new trim level named the GT Edition.

The good news is that some of the upgrades are mechanical with the new 370Z Coupe receiving retuned dampers which promise to provide a better balance between ride comfort and high-speed handling. Nissan has said that with the higher average speeds that are a part of driving in Europe, technicians from Nissan Technical Centre Europe sorted out the changes. For 2011, refinement is also being increased through revisions to underbody insulation reducing road noise.

While many buyers go for a bit of self-shifting in their Z-car, the optionally available seven-speed automatic transmission now gains a snow mode. When used the 370Z sets off in second gear and controls engine revs to prevent wheel spin on ice or snow.

Equipment upgrades include a rear view-parking camera as part of the new Nissan Premium Connect satellite navigation option. Continue reading “Nissan upgrades 370Z with new GT Edition” »

Nissan 370Z Roadster 2010 Review

June 7th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Nissan’s Z cars have a lengthy history that’s been groundbreaking, if not always successful. It all kicked off back in the late 1960s when the 240Z was launched and changed the way the world viewed Japanese performance cars. Before this break-through vehicle Japanese sports cars were often seen as too small, uncomfortable and worse — underpowered. The 240Z threw that perception into its six-cylinder engine and burnt it up, but not every Z car since has been as well received. Now the new 370Z is the sixth vehicle to wear the iconic ‘Z’ badge and the coupe has received raving reviews, but can the roadster variant keep pace? Car and SUV spent some time with the 370Z’s soft-top sibling to find out if it’s pure Japanese sport car or just a very expensive hair dryer.

From the outside the Roadster isn’t a large departure from the Coupe: it’s brawny, bold and, while curvaceous, isn’t at all feminine. The 370Z has ironed out much of the awkwardness that the preceding 350Z was criticised for. The shark tooth look up front is purposeful and a long bonnet with raked back headlight clusters ooze style. At the rear it’s big booty time with a high deck and wide swollen guards that are pinched off by a nearly vertical rear bumper. With so much visual mass at the rear the 370Z is athletically stanced and possesses massive road presence. The look is finished off by perfectly matched 19″ Rays alloys and a Z badges on the front guards that moonlight as indicators.

When it comes to the roof, the 370Z looks better with it dropped, but it remains a commendable effort. It’s longer and tapers off more gradually than the roof on the 350Z roadster. It also uses a lined high-quality fabric rather than vinyl and houses a glass rear window. To lower or raise the roof requires no latches or manual input and is done with the push of a button by an electro-hydraulic system. It’s a busy affair as the roof clunks through its movements. It can also be performed from the outside of the car by holding down the door unlock button. There is a solid feel to the roof and its mechanism, once in place, up or down, there is no creaking or noise from any joining points.

Continue reading “Nissan 370Z Roadster 2010 Review” »

Nissan 370Z in detail

December 17th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

High performance driving shots plus detailed interior and exterior animations and footage

Nissan to bring back the Silvia?

December 14th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Nissan Foria fq

There’s growing web-based speculation that Nissan is preparing to compete against Toyota and Subaru’s joint sports coupe with a revived Nissan Silvia.

With multiple carmakers, even Hyundai, getting in on the budget rear-drive action, it’s no surprise that Nissan wants back in as well. With Nissan’s strong Z-car legacy and the global following the Silvia generated, Nissan has as much sports car cred as any Japanese carmaker.

Apparently the Nissan Foria concept (shown above) could offer stylistic inspiration, but  the coupe may only be loosely based on this 2005 Tokyo Motor Show concept.

The rumors say that the reborn Silvia would get a smaller version of the platform that underpins the current 370Z, making a perfect use of existing architecture. This could work out well but may leave the new Silvia a bit heavy.

Created with a smaller powerplant–something like a 1.8-litre turbocharged four-banger the new Silvia would be even more sensitive to excess weight.  But that’s no problem, according to reports the car could weigh in as low as 1,270kg, a total featherweight by today’s standards, with the notable exception of the Mazda MX-5, which may be due out around the same time as the Silvia, and is expected to be even lighter.

Bad news is that it will be about two years until late 2011 or early 2012 to see if the 240SX revival is for real, but be ready for more speculation in the mean time.

Nissan Skyline Crossover released in Japan

July 15th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Nissan Skyline Crossover fq

Nissan has just released the latest variation of its Skyline sedan, the Skyline Crossover, in Japan this week and it’s the first crossover vehicle to bear the Skyline name. The Skyline Crossover is actually based upon the European-spec Infiniti EX37, and shares its sheetmetal and 3.7 litre powertrain with the EX37. This is the same engine fitted to the Nissan 370Z.

At 243kW, the power output of the Skyline Crossover’s engine falls short of the Z’s mill, but with 90 percent of peak torque on tap from between 2400rpm and 7000rpm, it’s still a healthy performer. A seven-speed automatic with paddle shifters is the only transmission offered, and is shared with the 370Z and Skyline 370GT.

The Skyline Crossover also comes packed with all sorts of tricks in the form of high-tech driving aids. An optional lane-departure prevention system works to keep the car on the right track and an intelligent cruise control system automatically maintains the Crossover’s distance from traffic.

Sadly, even with all its sharp styling, mechanical prowess and high-tech gadgets, the Skyline Crossover probably won’t be coming to NZ, unless it reaches us in its Infiniti EX37 form.

NISMO tuned Nissan 370Z debuts in Japan

June 26th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

NISMO Nissan 370Z fq

If you can get to Japan and have a passion for all things Z, Nissan’s got something very tasty for you. The company has just unleashed its factory tuned 370Z, and the results are attractive.

The JDM NISMO 370Z features a modified version of the 3.7-litre V6 engine that churns out 350 horsepower compared to the standard car’s 332HP. It’s available with a choice of either 6-speed manual or 7-speed automatic transmission.

The NISMO package also ads 19-inch alloy wheels shod in 245/40 R19 tires up front and 275/35 R19 at the rear, stiffer suspension and a high-performance brake system.

The coupe’s exterior styling is modified with a functional aero kit that includes a longer dipping nose, unique rear fascia, large wing and side skirts, while the interior is upgraded with a set of sport seats, special door trim and NISMO gauges.

If you want one jump on a plane to Japan and take a wad of cash with you Nissan has priced the NISMO 370Z at 4,935,00 Yen (about $79,760 NZ) for the 6-speed manual gearbox model and at 5,040,000 Yen (approx $81,435 NZ) for the automatic version.

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