Currently reading: Nissan Z Proto sports car heard for first time ahead of September reveal
Japanese firm confirms manual transmission for prototype version of long-awaited 370Z successor
Felix Page Autocar writer
News
3 mins read
10 September 2020

Nissan has stepped up its teaser campaign for the upcoming Z sports car, with a new video previewing its engine note - and confirming it will arrive with a manual transmission.

The 33-second video seemingly confirms the presence of a V6 powertrain, likely a twin-turbocharged unit expected to produce around 400bhp. 

The clip also revealed several other small details about the long-awaited successor to the 370Z, including the redesigned 'Z' logo, LED headlights and distinctive alloy wheels, which are shod in 'Nissan Z'-branded rubber.

Little else of the Z Proto, which is set to be officially revealed on the 16th of September, has been made official. 

The Japanese firm previously announced on Twitter that the Z Proto will preview the new model that's due in 2021. Autocar understands the production version of the car is set to use the 400Z title.

To date Nissan has revealed few other details of the car, set to become the latest addition to its Z sports car lineage which began with the 1969 Datsun 240Z. The Twitter post confirming the imminent arrival of the Z Proto read: “50 years of passion. Innovation at its core. Modern technology, with a vintage touch.’

The post also featured a short video that highlighted the 50-year lineage of the Z brand and finished with a teaser silhouette of the new car.

That video is the latest official hint at the shape of the future model, following a brief glimpse in a previous Nissan video highlights its future model line-up. That video shows that it could have styling evolved from the current 370Z coupé.

The preview came following Nissan's announcement that it's to embark on a wide-reaching cost-cutting strategy under the Nissan Next banner. As well as closing its commercial vehicles plant in Barcelona, Spain, the company will reduce production capacity by 20% over the next three years and streamline its ageing product portfolio. 

The 370Z is the oldest car in Nissan's current line-up, having been launched in 2008. The company's product planning boss, Ivan Espinosa, told Autocar at last year's Tokyo motor show that the sports car - along with the GT-R flagship - was "at the heart of Nissan" and that the company was "actively looking at and working on" a successor. 

Autocar understands that the new Z car will be called the 400Z and take its power from a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 with more power than the current car. It's unlikely to sit on a bespoke platform, given its relatively low sales volumes, and could instead make use of the rear-driven underpinnings from Nissan sibling brand Infiniti's Q50 and Q60 models. 

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Nissan 370Z

The Nissan 370Z is seductively honest, entertaining and great value, too. But it’s no long-haul cruiser

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Nissan recently submitted a trademark application for a restyled version of the Z badge, fuelling speculation that a new sports car was on the way. The badge's retro look hinted that the new model will take styling inspiration from Nissan's historic sports cars, potentially with a sharp front end like that of the 240Z and distinctive brake lights inspired by the 300ZX. 

The interior of the new model is earmarked for a significant redesign, too, with that of the 370Z frequently criticised for being outdated compared to its rivals. Expect a focus on premium materials throughout and for the current car's basic touchscreen to be replaced with a modern infotainment system with access to various connectivity services. 

 

The 400Z's unveiling is expected within the next 12 months. 

Read more

Nissan announces major cuts, but Sunderland plant safe​

New Nissan Z car to use 400Z name and twin-turbo V6

Nissan committed to replacing 370Z and GT-R​

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Comments
18

28 May 2020

 From what we saw, it doesn't look that bad, I hope whatever powers it is at least up to Supra levels of performance.

28 May 2020
Peter Cavellini wrote:

From what we saw, it doesn't look that bad, I hope whatever powers it is at least up to Supra levels of performance.

Let's hope it looks as good as that Autocar redering - a fabulous looking thing, so much better than the 370Z, and much nicer than the Supra, which looks just like a GT86 on steroids.  

29 May 2020

Looks great so far.  

I hope they maintain a retro feel at the rear by keeping wide tailgate glass with pillars that blend into the quarter panels, not taper the glass like so many modern cars (and the Autocar rendering).  While not unattractive, the tapered glass doesn't capture the Z look.

28 May 2020

looks grate! id have one luved the 350 and 370 reel fast cars sound good with big boar exsawsts

28 May 2020
sbagnall wrote:

looks grate! id have one luved the 350 and 370 reel fast cars sound good with big boar exsawsts

Why do the looks grate?  I think it looks fantastic.  What is it about this rendering's looks that you find so grating?

28 May 2020
I mean it looks great! Me spellin ain't the best mate , struggel at times with that sort of thing

28 May 2020
sbagnall wrote:

I mean it looks great! Me spellin ain't the best mate , struggel at times with that sort of thing

Please forgive me.  Your response was a hell of a lot more mature than my comment.  I was being a comdescending pillock.  I apologise for being rude.

28 May 2020
martin_66 wrote:

sbagnall wrote:

I mean it looks great! Me spellin ain't the best mate , struggel at times with that sort of thing

Please forgive me.  Your response was a hell of a lot more mature than my comment.  I was being a comdescending pillock.  I apologise for being rude.

Make that a 'condescending' pillock.  I thoroughly deserve to get the p*ss taken out of me for that!

28 May 2020
Once the industry gets back on its feet - 12-18 months - I reckon they'll be quite a few mainstream manufacturers designing nearly affordable dream cars, why not?
After all, there are only so many tweaks you can make to a saloon, estate or hatch back, (or so it seems if the last six or seven years of the model types are anything to go by).
All the underlying performance already exists in the before mentioned models so just maybe one for the masses looking forward, and not just the privileged.

1 September 2020
Just Saying wrote:

Once the industry gets back on its feet - 12-18 months - I reckon they'll be quite a few mainstream manufacturers designing nearly affordable dream cars, why not? After all, there are only so many tweaks you can make to a saloon, estate or hatch back, (or so it seems if the last six or seven years of the model types are anything to go by). All the underlying performance already exists in the before mentioned models so just maybe one for the masses looking forward, and not just the privileged.

Yep, I hope we get cars like this, but, for most of us , it'll be an SUV of various sizes, that seems to be the trend just now.

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