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Future models - Nissan - 370Z

First look: Next Z-car in straight-to-video debut

Game-on: Nissan's more compact new 370Z coupe, as seen in the new Undercover game from Need for Speed.

Nissan’s wildly anticipated replacement for its 350Z appears first in a video game

21 Oct 2008

NISSAN’S upcoming 370Z sportscar has been partially revealed in a new video game ahead of the model’s world debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show next month.

The Need for Speed video gives viewers some fleeting though only partial views of the next-generation rear-wheel drive two-door coupe successor to the 350Z, uncovering details such as the wheel-arches along with the overall shape of the car.

Perhaps the biggest revelation in the video is that the boomerang-shaped lights known to be featured on the nose of the 370Z will be mirrored in the tail-lights as well.

The ‘Coke Bottle’ upsweep to the window line is also clearly visible. It rises to a hockey stick-style kink in the C-pillar, giving the rear of the car a hint of the striking A310 sportscar produced by the Renault-controlled Alpine marque in France between 1971 and 1984.

The game images also lend weight to rumours that the new car’s wheelbase will be shorter than the 350Z’s current 2550mm.

It is also believed that Nissan’s E-platform architecture – formally known as the FR-L for Front-engined, Rear-wheel drive, Large and FM for Front Mid-ship – will underpin the 370Z. As GoAuto reported back in May, it can also be found underneath a number of Nissan/Infiniti models, including the Skyline/G sedan and coupe, Stagea wagon, FX and EX SUVs and M sedan flagship.

Further scoop photography has also uncovered a much more modern and quality-orientated interior treatment that seems to do away with the swathes of plastic trim blighting the cabin of the outgoing 350Z.

Whether there will be more luggage or cargo space remains to be seen.

Speculation continues as to whether the 370Z will actually weigh less than today’s 1533kg coupe (the 350Z Convertible tips the scales at 100kg more), although the car will probably come complete with a variation of the VQ37VHR 3.7-litre V6 as fitted to the Infiniti/Skyline G37 coupe. In the latter, power and torque outputs are rated at 245kW at 7000rpm and 363Nm at 5200rpm respectively. It employs Nissan’s new variable valve technology dubbed VVEL – Variable Valve Event and Lift – that is supposed to offer improvements to engine response, power and fuel economy.

A key change is believed to be the introduction of Nissan’s new seven-speed automatic transmission, courtesy of Jatco. It is expected to join the standard-issue six-speed manual gearbox as an option.

Like the 350Z, a two-seater convertible version of this car is also on the horizon.

Mooted for a debut in the first quarter of next year, it will boast a soft-top that is said to be far better resolved than the rather upright item found on the current drop-top.

Read more:

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