A new Z car has been a long time coming, but the wait is nearly over. Originally announced at the end of May, the 370Z successor was previewed once again earlier this week in a bittersweet teaser foreshadowing a September 16 debut of what will likely be a prototype given the use of “Proto” in the announcement.
Separately from Nissan’s ongoing teaser campaign, the company’s Senior vice president for Global Design, Alfonso Albaisa, published on his personal Instagram account an interesting sketch. While you might be tempted to say it’s a drawing of a second-generation 300ZX (Z32) because of the stacked horizontal taillights, the car’s silhouette is in line with the original teaser from a few months ago. Another dead giveaway we’re dealing with the next-gen car is the updated Z logo on the side.
The design sketch is in line with a report from early May indicating the next Z car would get rectangular taillights inspired by those of the Z32 (pictured below). The same report suggested round LED headlights derived from the 1960s Fairlady Z, which the teasers have revealed to be accurate. While the exterior will play the retro card, the interior is said to be brought up to date with the latest technologies and fancier materials.
All will be revealed in two weeks as the Z Proto is set to premiere on September 16. It’ll likely be a near-production prototype, with the real thing hopefully not far behind. Chances are this is not going to be the final name as we’re inclined to believe it will adopt the 400Z moniker, but nothing is official at this point.
It is widely believed the revamped sports car will feature a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 engine with somewhere in the region of 400 horsepower. Chances are a manual gearbox is planned for enthusiasts, alongside an automatic transmission to please both worlds. Much like the engine, the platform could be borrowed from the Infiniti Q60 since now is not a good time to invest in a new architecture for a sports car. That’s especially true given Nissan’s current financial shape.
The road-going Nissan 400Z could arrive at some point in 2021.