We can't discuss the new Nissan Z without first acknowledging its lineage.
S30 and S130 (1969-1983)
The Nissan Z series traces its roots back to 1969 with the introduction of the groundbreaking Datsun 240Z (S30). This sleek sports car captured the hearts of enthusiasts worldwide with its captivating design, robust inline-six engine, and impressive performance, all while maintaining an accessible price point. By 1970, the 240Z had skyrocketed to fame in the United States, where it was sold under the Datsun brand, becoming an instant icon on American roads. Production of the S30 continued until 1978, setting the stage for the next chapter in the Z's storied history. In 1978, the torch was passed to the Datsun 280ZX (S130), which carried forward the Z's legacy with a focus on driver comfort and refinement. While maintaining the familiar silhouette of its predecessor, the 280ZX introduced advancements in comfort and technology, including the option for a turbocharged engine—a first for the Z series. Production of the 280ZX continued until 1983, leaving an indelible mark on the automotive landscape.
Z31 and Z32 (1983-1996)
As the Nissan Z series progressed, each iteration pushed the boundaries of automotive engineering and design philosophy to new heights. The first-generation 300ZX (Z31) made its debut in 1983, showcasing a sleek, updated body style that set the stage for future models. A significant evolution occurred with the transition from the inline-six engine of the 240Z to the turbocharged V6 powerplant featured in the Z31, marking a pivotal moment in the Z's performance capabilities. This shift offered drivers a compelling blend of power and efficiency, elevating the driving experience to new levels. The second generation 300ZX (Z32) continued to innovate, introducing the first twin-turbocharged option to the Z line. Produced from 1990 to 1996 in the United States, the Z32 further solidified the Z's reputation as a leader in performance and technology.
The US had gone 6 years without an introduction to a 5th generation of Z. In 2002, the Nissan 350Z (Z33) broke the dry spell, making a triumphant return to the American automotive scene. With its bold design, muscular stance, and powerful performance, the 350Z captivated enthusiasts and reignited excitement for the Z series. Under the hood, a V6 engine delivered exhilarating acceleration and a sporty driving experience. The 350Z represented a modern interpretation of the classic sports car formula, combining cutting-edge technology with timeless design cues.
Introduced in 2010, the 370Z (Z34) showcased a more refined and aggressive exterior design, featuring sharper lines, a sleeker profile, and updated styling cues that emphasized its athletic demeanor. Under the hood, the 370Z received a boost in power and performance, with a revised V6 engine delivering increased horsepower and torque for an even more exhilarating driving experience. The interior saw improvements in materials and craftsmanship, offering enhanced comfort and a more driver-focused cockpit. Additionally, the 370Z introduced advanced technology features, such as available touchscreen infotainment systems and driver-assist technologies. The production of the 370Z came to an end in 2020, marking the conclusion of an era for this beloved sports car model.
The new Nissan Z (RZ34) embodies the essence of the iconic Z series, blending timeless design with modern performance. Its exterior features bold, muscular lines and dynamic styling, including sleek LED headlights and dual exhaust outlets, exuding athleticism and presence on the road. Inside, the cabin offers a luxurious yet sporty environment with premium materials and modern tech amenities like a customizable digital instrument cluster and touchscreen infotainment system. Powering this Nissan is a robust 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine, delivering 400 horsepower. This engine can be paired with either a 6-speed manual transmission or a 9-speed automatic.