New model will be lighter and will feature a downsized engine, probably a four-cylinder turbo rather than today’s 3.7-litre V6

Nissan's next Z-car will be lighter and leaner and appeal to a wider range of buyers, according to design boss Shiro Nakamura. Work on the 370Z replacement “is at an early stage”, he said, adding “there is a concept car to come; work has just started on it”.

There is no word on when that concept could be unveiled, but the 2014 Detroit motor show is a possibility.

The current 370Z has not enjoyed quite the same success as the 2002 350Z, which revived the Z-car reputation and sold well in Europe, the US and Japan.

The 370Z has been hit hard by the global recession — sales were down 45 per cent last year from the 2009 peak in the US, its biggest market — and it has not made quite the same splash as the 350Z. “The next one has to have a stronger impact,” said Nakamura.

That won’t be achieved by making it bigger. “It cannot be any larger,” he said. “It’s at its maximum size now and should go leaner.”

The new model will also feature a downsized engine, probably a four-cylinder turbo rather than today’s 3.7-litre V6, which will go some way to boadening the car’s appeal. “It needs to be lighter and more accessible to open the door to more people,” said Nakamura.

Nissan must also juggle with the product planning implications of a move to a lighter, leaner, downsized Z, because the current car not only shares its FM platform with the conceptually close Infiniti G coupé, but also the G saloon and the Infiniti FX.

The Alliance tie-up with Daimler might also mean that the next Z-car could draw on Mercedes-Benz hardware.

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Comments
15

21 July 2012

I hope they can find a way of keeping the V6, even if it has to get smaller, and keep it normally aspirated too. I dont mind a 4 cylinder turbo, but they should offer the choice, they drive very differently.

The current car would sell massively better if it crept under the 225g/km mark. 

I have always thought the 350Z and 370Z were very expensive here as well. But given the low strength of Sterling and the high strength of the Yen perhaps thats how it has to be

21 July 2012

This is bad news. The 370Z is one of the last petrolhead's affordable sportscars. I hope it doesn't get the EU treatment. I'd rather it would die a heroic death than live to become a turbo'd four pot clone.

21 July 2012

A L4 turbo. No thanks!

 

22 May 2013

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21 July 2012

This car has been ignored to long, i always thought a lighter,agile car, a sort of Nismo'd version would have been here sooner.

Peter Cavellini.

22 July 2012

Never was convinced by this "sports car", neither coupe nor drop top. Nicely tuned exhaust note, reasonably interesting cabin ....

22 July 2012

A 4 cylinder turbo would be better as the current car is just a fat slob. I like the look of the 370Z but it just looks like a facelifted version of the 350Z. The next gen should be 4 cylinder turbo and to be put more in competition with the Toyobaru GTBRZ.

The whole Infiniti next gen line up should then be based on the new cars platform and use the new 4 cylinder turbo and the current V6. Also add a sporty diesel to the line up to broaden the appeal to Europeans.

22 July 2012

Four pot turbo? Surely that would be rather more a new Silivia? Such a shame if the V6 went. Why not just downsize the engine a smidge and concentrate of taking weight out? Perhaps it just sits in an awkward gaps between 'sports car' and 'GT car'. I'd still have one though if my pockets were deeper. Bl**dy EU.

  • If you want to know about a car, read a forum dedicated to it; that's a real 'long term test' . No manufacturer's warranty, no fleet managers servicing deals, no journalist's name to oil the wheels...

23 July 2012

This may sound a bit off topic, but I certainly hope that any "lighter, leaner" discoveries from the "Z" are also applied to the GT-R.  That nearly 4,000-lb megalith could stand being on a diet!  Maybe Nissan could put out a special GT-R version that is RWD only; has a 50/50 weight distribution; weighs under 3500 lbs, and still has 530 HP (or more).  Adding a real manual transmission as an option might be nice, too.  That new GT-R (let's call it the GT-X) could be the Z's "big brother", as, for example, the Porsche 911 is the "big brother" to the Boxster. 

23 July 2012

I loved my 370Z, and while lighter is always good, I'd much prefer them to stick with the big V6 rather than go for a small capacity turbo. Not least because it removes all the tuning ability from the car - spending £5k on a stillen supercharger kit on one of these is one of the easiest ways to get a brand new true 500 bhp rear wheel drive sports car for £35k with a warranty.

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