There’s no timetable yet so don’t get those hopes up

Don’t dig a hole for the Nissan Z sports car yet. Despite all the noise surrounding its demise, the Z sports car family is still breathing. Nissan’s chief planning officer, Philippe Klein, made that clear in a conversation with Automotive News earlier this month at the Detroit Auto Show. According to Klein, the Z is still part of the automaker’s plans. More importantly, Nissan’s already working on a successor to the 370Z. Klein didn’t elaborate any further than that, but we’ll take this win for now. The Nissan Z sports car line is alive and breathing.

2020 Nissan Z Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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Even if a successor to the aging 370Z is in the works, don’t expect it to arrive anytime soon.

It’s nice to see Nissan confirming that the Z sports car still has a lifeline. That should put any concerns about the car’s future to rest. But don’t celebrate yet because even if a successor to the aging 370Z is in the works, don’t expect it to arrive anytime soon.

“The Z is a difficult market," Klein said. “It is rather shrinking worldwide. But we still believe there is a place for the Z, and we want to keep it alive, and that’s what we’re working on.”

As optimistic as he sounds about the car’s status, Klein also admitted that there are legitimate concerns within Nissan about the Z’s long-term viability considering the shifting trends in the auto industry. "If we do a completely new vehicle, what should it be to keep the passion alive? And we’re working very seriously on this — how we can keep the Z alive and refreshing and what would be the next generation?"

No crossover/SUV, please!

2013 Nissan IDx Nismo High Resolution Exterior
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The Nissan Z sports car has a rich tradition behind it that dates all the way back to 1969

In the meantime, work on a successor to the 370Z is ongoing. Klein didn’t divulge details, but he did say that the automaker is working on a model that would act as a replacement to a 370Z model that’s been around for nine years, an eternity for any model, let alone a sports coupé.

The obvious assumption is that this successor is also going to be a sports coupé. Over the years, there have been a lot of speculation surrounding the 370Z successor. At one point, the iDX concepts were thrown around as potential candidates.

More recently, the Nissan Gripz concept was being touted as the basis for the potential successor of the 370Z. This would’ve been a good idea, except that the Gripz is actually a crossover, not an actual sports coupé. Surely, Nissan isn’t that desperate to keep the Z’s life going by turning it into a crossover, right? Right?

The Nissan Z sports car has a rich tradition behind it that dates all the way back to 1969. It includes the Nissan 300ZX — the sexiest Nissan ever — in its family tree. I’m for keeping the model alive because of its legacy. But for the love of God, Nissan, keep the Z’s bloodline pure. Don’t ruin it by adding a “sporty crossover or SUV” in the family. If you’re going to do that, might as well find a shovel for the Z family.

References

Nissan Z

2020 Nissan Z Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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Read our full speculative review on the next Nissan Z.

Nissan 370Z

2009 - 2017 Nissan 370Z High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan 370Z.

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Read more Nissan news.

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