Nissan has been highly secretive about its new rear-wheel-drive sports car, but the cat is now out of the bag if we were to rely on someone who claims to be in the know. According to a member of the 400Z Club forums, the new performance coupe will go by the name of "Z" all over the world, with the exception of homeland Japan where it'll be marketed as the "Fairlady Z."
The 2022 Nissan Z will allegedly carry a starting price of $34,995, which would make it far more attainable than the GR Supra 2.0 ($42,990), not to mention the BMW Z4 sDrive30i ($49,700), which both have 2.0-liter engines with 255 horsepower. The 370Z replacement will offer a healthy 400 horsepower for the money, besting both the Supra 3.0 ($50,990) and the BMW Z4 M40i ($63,700) with their 382-hp, inline-six engines.
Gallery: Nissan Z Proto
According to the same source, the new Z will indeed get the long-rumored VR30DDTT engine from the Q60 Red Sport. There's no word about torque, but we do know the twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 is able to generate 350 pound-feet (475 Newton-meters) in the Infiniti model. The six-speed manual gearbox will be carried over from the 370Z while the automatic will be of the torque-converter variety, specifically a nine-speed Mercedes-Benz 9G-Tronic.
It is believed the 2022 Nissan Z will tip the scales at 3,252 pounds (1,475 kilograms, dry), presumably for the base variant with the stick shift. It will be followed by a hotter Nismo variant – described internally as a "baby GT-R" – and claimed to bring more than just a body kit and a different exhaust.
Meanwhile, the standard Z will offer Type S and Type T packages at $5,000 a pop. The former encompasses Brembo brakes, thicker sway bars, beefier cooling, and additional content while the latter has leather upholstery, heated and cooled electrically adjustable seats, automatic cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and other goodies.
The most expensive Z of the bunch will be the Type ST, which will add $10,000 to the final bill by combining both the Type S and Type T packages. Regardless of configuration, all versions of the Z sports car will have a fully digital instrument cluster, infotainment with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, as well as a rear duckbill we saw a few days ago in those hugely revealing spy shots.
The same source says what many have already predicted: "Yes, this car really is a 370Z with a body kit and a VR30 swap, and the chassis was massaged… heavily (more aluminum, more bracing, carbon fiber)." He goes on to say the revamped Z will be exclusively a coupe affair as there are no current plans for another roadster.
As for colors, they'll essentially be carried over from the outgoing 370Z, but with new yellow and orange shades Nissan is apparently "so proud of." The 400Z Club member specifies the car was initially supposed to go on sale in spring 2022, but it's been allegedly fast-tracked for a late 2021 launch.
As always, take the info with the proverbial pinch of salt, but we do admit it all sounds rather wonderful at this point.