Instead, the Japanese automaker wants you to dance with it.
The new Nissan Z is finally here. Previewed by the Z Proto last year, Nissan's new Z car was shown to the world earlier this month, albeit virtually since the 2021 New York Auto Show was unfortunately canceled. Under the hood, the 2021 Nissan Z is powered by a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 producing 400 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque.
For comparison, the 370Z's naturally aspirated 3.7-liter V6 generated 332 hp and 276 lb-ft of torque. Nissan hasn't confirmed performance specs yet, but it's safe to say the new Z will be quicker than its predecessor. But the new Nissan Z is about more than just raw numbers.
Speaking with Road and Track, the Nissan Z's chief engineer Hiroshi Tamura - who also heads up Nissan's GT-R development - describes the new Z car as a "dance partner" and wants anyone who drives it to have an emotional response. "It's not chasing number or power or zero to 60," he said. "You can go to the track, but the more important thing [is to] enjoy a conversation with the car." Tamura is confident the new Z car is so responsive and enjoyable to drive that anyone who experiences it will feel like they are behind the wheel of a car for the first time.
Tamura also confirmed reports that the new Z car shares the same underpinnings as the old 370Z, which launched 13 years ago. But that doesn't mean there aren't improvements.
To cope with the increased power and torque, the chassis has been significantly strengthened. The front double-wishbone suspension has also been modified and the Z has been upgraded with electric power steering and wider front tires, so it should be a dream to drive.
As standard, the Nissan Z comes with a six-speed manual gearbox, adding to the engaging driving experience. The Z car can also be ordered with an optional nine-speed automatic with paddle shifters, but Tamura felt it was important to keep the manual alive as long as customers demand it. "I want to see the customers smile," he said. "This is always my goal, so why not protect the manual transmission?"