For the classic-car enthusiast, the Z-car is high in popularity. The surge of value over the past decade thanks to baby boomers and Gen-Xers fueled by their inner high-schooler. The first gen. Datsun 240Zs sold for three years starting in 1970, and twin-turbo Nissan 300ZX models from the 90s are in the lead.
However, over the same time, interest in the Nissan 370Z has dropped. Both the public as well as decision-makers at Nissan have seemingly forgotten the two-seater.
Now eleven years since its creation, the 370Z hasn’t changed much since its replacement of the 350Z in 2009.
The blue tester car had a six-speed manual transmission at $31,805. That is $1,595 less than a Mazda MX-5 Miata RF starting price. The Mazda is smaller and only packs 155 horses in the 2.-liter inline-four.
Nissan Z-car V-6 powered 370Z is A Match Made in Car Heaven
The 370Z powered by V-6 smokes the Mazda in a straight line. It can reach 60mpg in 5 seconds, covering a quarter-mile in 13.6 seconds at 106 mph.
The Z also has plenty of torque right off of idle which makes it simple to drive around town. Those feeling lazy can lug it through traffic in second or third gear. The six-speed makes it so the V-6 never falls off its powerband unless you want. Even at 80mph on the highway, the engine revs at over 3000 rpm. Even when passing, you’ll rarely need to downshift.
However, there’s a lot of vibration in the shifter and clutch pedal. This factor is especially true over 4500 rpm which keeps the powertrain of the Z from feeling like newer models. The stroke of the shifter is massive too and resembles a clutch with the rubber quality of its action.
Although, unlike the problematic shifter, the Z’s steering is something to behold. You can quite literally steer the Z with only one finger.
The Nissan’s tachometer, like the Miata, BRZ, and Porsche 911, is found in the center of the gauge cluster like a proper sports car. The 370Z also sports an oil-temperature gauge. It also has a shift light which flashes red starting at 7000 rpm. The pedals are placed perfectly for heel-and-toe downshifts.
Balance and Grip of the 370Z
The 370Z feels stable even when crossing bumpy terrain. The balance of the Nissan is surprisingly right despite having 55.2% of its 3,327 pounds hanging over its front tires.
However, if pushed too far, the 370Z can dissapoint. The suspension begins to feel flaccid, and the Z becomes nose heavy with a lot of understeer. Its short wheelbase, staggered 18-inch summer tires and wide track, the Z has less grip than it should.
It doesn’t seem like Nissan plans to replace the 370Z anytime soon. There hasn’t been any news about a seventh-generation Z-car either. For now, we wait for the reintroduction of the Toyota Supra in its partnership with BMW.