Nissan Philippines just launched the newest Z car and the updated GT-R a few weeks ago. As good as the cars are, what we’re waiting for are Nismo versions of the two. Well, the GT-R already has one, and it is sold in other markets. The Z has got one, too.
It only makes sense that Nissan launches the Z Nismo in its biggest sports car market, North America, particularly the United States. And just now, we finally get to know the rest of the details that make up the performance variant.
Let’s start with the exterior styling changes. The Z Nismo now gets what the Japanese company calls the “Grand Nose” (or “G-Nose”). This extends the front chin ever so slightly forward. More than adding downforce, it also gets additional style points as this looks similar to that of the original Fairlady 240ZG.
A redesigned side sill replaces the stock ones on the ordinary car. The rear bumper’s sides have been reshaped like the ones on the GT-R. Finally, a new three-piece ducktail spoiler wraps around from one rear fender to the other. All of these do help provide downforce, lessen aerodynamic drag and lift, and give better air separation and lower drag.
As with all Nismo versions, a red accent wraps around the lower part of the car.
Completing the list of exterior changes are a new Nismo-exclusive Stealth Gray finish, a blacked-out roof, and a set of gloss black 19-inch Rays lightweight wheels. Of course, Nismo badges can be found on the front grille and the rear bumper.
Inside, Nissan has muted the interior of unnecessary styling elements to help you focus more on driving. The start/stop and drive mode selection buttons now have anodized red finishes. The fully digital instrument cluster has been simplified, with a red outline around the rev counter (which has a Nismo logo on it). The screen gets a special red flash when booting up.
The leather- and Alcantara-wrapped Recaro seats have also been restyled, now featuring red center sections. The same materials can also be found on the tiller, with a red accent found at the 12-o’clock position.
But the most important additions are all under the hood. The 400hp 3.0-liter VR30DDTT engine gains 20hp more. It also has 45Nm more torque, which is available across a wider rev range. This bumps the power output to 420hp and 520Nm.
This was made possible thanks to tweaks on the engine and oil cooling systems, the turbo with better wastegate control, and the spark timing.
To the contempt of purists, the Z Nismo only comes with a nine-speed automatic transmission, similar to other variants of the car. However, the slushbox on the special version has revised clutch packs to allow quicker shifts, perfect for track use. The new engine management software also cuts downshift time by half, and the launch control allows for more aggressive starts.
Taking full advantage of this better transmission is an additional Sport+ mode. It makes use of the Z Nismo transmission’s improved responsiveness so much so that manual shifts by the driver are deemed too slow.
But all of that power and quick shifting are nothing if the car doesn’t handle well. And so, engineers used new stabilizer bars, stiffer springs, and retuned larger dampers. To help with the handling, the car comes fitted with Dunlop SP Sport Maxx GT600s, with the rear tires wider at 285/35 R19 compared to the front’s 275/35 R19.
The chassis was also revised. Added were front, rear, and rear underfloor braces. The suspension bushings are also stiffer—the same as the mounting bushing for the steering rack. Finally, the larger 15-inch front and 13.8-inch rear brake rotors help tame this beast better.
All of these come at a price, though. The Z Nismo has a price tag of $64,990 (or P3,711,000), a whopping $14,000 (or P800,000) more than the basic Z version. This would cost a lot more if it ever reached our shores as taxes will surely shoot the pricing up.
Z Nismos are already being sold in the US, and will probably hit other markets soon. We know that it might be a little too much to ask, but we hope that Nissan Philippines can bring this baby to the country.