The 2023 Nissan Z just made its official debut and it will hit the market in Spring 2022 with a starting price of around $40,000by Dim Angelov, on LISTEN 10:07
Fans have been anticipating the Nissan Z for a full year and now, it’s finally here. The 2023 Nissan Z was just unveiled at the Brooklyn Duggal Greenhouse. This is just five miles away from where the original 240Z was unveiled, back in October 1969. This is the seventh generation of the iconic Z car and promises to be the most exciting one yet.
2023 Nissan Z - The Seventh-Gen Z Arrives With A V-6 Engine, 400 Horsepower, And A Manual Gearbox
Horsepower @ RPM:400
Torque @ RPM:350
Nissan Z - Drivetrain and Performance
A vital aspect of a sports car is the engine.
It is finally confirmed that the 2023 Nissan Z is equipped with a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6 that makes 400 horsepower at 6,400 RPM and 350 pound-feet (480 Nm) at 1,500 to 5,600 RPM.
It’s the same VR30DDTT unit we know from the Infiniti Q50 and Q60 RedSport models. Power, of course, goes to the rear wheels. The new Z also comes with a mechanical limited-slip differential, as standard.
There are two gearboxes available – a six-speed manual and a nine-speed automatic that’s borrowed from Mercedes. The latter adds aluminum shift paddles. As for the manual transmission, all Zs that have three pedals also get a carbon-fiber driveshaft. Launch control will be available for both gearboxes and the manual will featured auto rev-match, which can be turned on or off.
The new Z is underpinned by a modified version of the 370Z platform, which is, in turn, a modified version of the 350Z architecture. Still, the car promises even more chassis rigidity and a curb weight of under 3,300 pounds (1,500 kg). The 2023 Z hasn’t been benchmarked yet, but we expect the 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) time to be in the mid to low 4.0 seconds.
Nissan Z - Trims
According to Nissa, the new Z will be offered in two trims – Sport and Performance. These are believed to be what we previously referred to as the Type T and Type S packages. The first is expected to be focused more on amenities, such as heated and cooled leather seats, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and other equipment.
The Performance is believed to be what we previously knew as the Type S. We already know that this gives the Z bigger intercoolers, thicker sway bars, and other performance enhancements. Some reports indicate that the Performance package would also add a new exhaust and potentially up the power output.
There will also be a special “Proto Spec” edition, of which only 240 cars will be built.
Nissan says that this limited edition of the car will include unique features, only offered on this version. Although not yet confirmed, it is believed that all 240 limited-edition cars will be finished in Ikazuchi yellow – the color we first saw on the 400Z Proto.
Nissan Z - Exterior
The 2023 Nissan Z’s retro-futuristic design clearly draws inspiration from previous Z generations. The front end, in particular, is heavily reminiscent of the S30 240Z, from 1969. The front grille was a particularly interesting topic of discussion, as many wondered if it will feature the uninterrupted design of the Z-Proto. Like the original, the new Z also boasts a long front hood, which also accommodates the V-shaped bulge in the center, as was with the 240Z.
On the side, we have very similar lines to the 370Z, albeit sharper. Whereas the 370Z had a nicely rounded back end, the 2023 Nissan Z features a bolder design. We also have the “Katana” trim piece that sits between the side window and the roofline. The car also seems to be a bit longer than the recently discontinued Z34 model.
The rear end is probably the favorite part of many enthusiasts, as the Z clearly draws inspiration from the Z32 300ZX. This is most noticeable when you look at the taillights, which are a modern interpretation of those found on the 1989-1996 model. It even has the same engine layout, as we already mentioned. Of course, the rear end is completed with a blacked-out rear diffuser, accommodating dual exhaust tips.
|Ground Clearance||4.8 inches|
|Track Width (front/rear)||61.6/62.8|
Nissan Z - Interior
The retro-inspired theme continues on the inside, as the driver-focused interior blends classic design with modern technology. Behind the three-spoke steering wheel sits a 12.3-inch fully digital instrument cluster with a centrally-positioned tachometer. It’s also highly customizable should you decide you want a different layout. Cars equipped with the nine-speed automatic also get aluminum paddle shifters.
At the top center part of the dashboard, we see the three analog gauges, which are a classic Fairlady Z feature dating back to the first Fairlady Z, and kept since.
Further down we see an eight-inch infotainment screen. There’s also a nine-inch option, which could be part of one of the Z’s optional packages.
Further down, we find three rotating knobs for the HVAC controls. Overall, the interior is way better than the previous model’s button-fest. You still get quick-access buttons for the more essential features, which is a good thing.
|Hip room||54.6 inches|
|Shoulder room||54.2 inches|
Nissan Z - Pricing
One of the most talked-about aspects of the Nissan Z is its price. For a while now, the new Z-car has been promising to be the ultimate performance car bargain of the year and now, we know for sure that this is exactly the case. The Z will have a base price of around $35,000.
Two packages are available – one focused on performance and the other focused on comfort. Each will set you back $5,000, which brings the total price of the Z to nearly $40,000. You can also get both packages, in which case the Z will set you back nearly $45,000. Despite that, the 2023 Nissan Z is still a bargain, considering how much performance you’re getting.
Nissan Z Competition
When we talk about compact sports cars, we cannot go without mentioning Porsche’s entry-level mid-engine sports car. While the Nissan Z is the ultimate bargain in its segment, you do have to pay a premium for the Porsche badge. Starting at $56,350, the 718 Cayman certainly isn’t expensive, compared to other Porsche models.
However, for this much “green” you are getting a base model and every optional piece of equipment costs extra. The base engine isn’t much to write home about either, as it’s a 2.0-liter turbocharged flat-four that makes 296 horsepower at 6,500 RPM and 280 pound-feet (380 Nm) at 2,150 to 4,500 RPM. This is enough to propel the 2,597-pound (1,178 kg) Porsche to 60 mph in just 4.9 seconds, on its way to 171 mph (275 km/h).
What you are really paying for here is Porsche’s excellent chassis and a supercar-like rear-mid-engine layout. You also get a six-speed manual as standard, or an optional seven-speed PDK, both of which are some of the best on the market.
This is arguably the Z’s nemesis or the other way around depending on how you are looking at it. Ever since we learned of a new Z being in development, there have been talks about how it would measure up to the BMW-based Toyota Supra.
The GR Supra starts at $43,090, which gets you the 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four variant. That one makes 254 horsepower and 295 pound-feet (400 Nm). This is enough to accelerate the 3,075-pound (1,395 kg) sports car to 60 mph in an impressive 4.5 seconds, on its way to 158 mph (254 km/h).
If you want the more powerful 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six engine, you’ll have to pay $8,000 extra, which makes the GR Supra even more expensive, compared to the Nissan Z. Of course, going for the bigger engine means 382 horsepower and 368 pound-feet (499 Nm), although some dyno tests have confirmed it’s actually more than that. In any case, this enables the car to reach 60 mph in an impressive 3.9 seconds, on its way to 160 mph (257 km/h). Regardless, of the engine, power is sent to the rear through the smooth and quick ZF eight-speed automatic.
I think it’s obvious that the Nissan Z is the bargain of the century. Bang for the buck, it’s a much better proposition than two of its most important competitors – the Cayman and the GR Supra – at least on paper. At the same time, it manages to invoke the spirit of older Fairlady Z models and manages to combine some of the best of old-school Japanese sports cars. I probably sound like a broken record, but the fact that it can be had with a manual gearbox in times when most manufacturers are giving up on the three pedals is a dream come true for car enthusiasts who enjoy old-school motoring.
|Engine||3.0-liter, Twin-Turbo V-6|
|Horsepower||400 horses @ 6,400 rpm|
|Torque||350 pound-feet @ 1,600 - 5,600 rpm|
|Tranmission||Six-speed manual or nine-speed automatic|