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

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 Nissan 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. 


Read our review

Car review

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. 

6 Nissan 400z render 2020 static side 0


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

Read more

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

Nissan committed to replacing 370Z and GT-R​

Felix Page

Felix Page
Title: News and features editor

Felix is Autocar's news editor, responsible for leading the brand's agenda-shaping coverage across all facets of the global automotive industry - both in print and online.

He has interviewed the most powerful and widely respected people in motoring, covered the reveals and launches of today's most important cars, and broken some of the biggest automotive stories of the last few years. 

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ianp55 11 September 2020

Next Generation Nissan Z Car

I really hope that when Nissan UK  puts the new Z Car on sale in Blighty that they keep the price roughly in line with the current 370Z,as it is currently one of the great performance bargains on sale here. Where else can you get a new two seat car V6 powered 300 plus BHP and get change from £30k? The 370Z  is the last of the line of the true sports car the spirit of the Austin Healey 3000 & Triumph TR6 the new car has mighty boots to fill

artill 1 September 2020

I hope it looks as good as

I hope it looks as good as the Autocar render. A manual box, 6 cylinder engine, dont change the price too much, and add a DAB radio. Job done.

asif 29 May 2020


The current Z may be 10 years old but frankly its still design dynamite.

The styling is bang on all these years on. Sure the interior and some detailing has dated, but overall it's still light years better than its dull as anything competition.

The same for the GTR.

Both cars are design and styling genius.