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Nissan to apply GT-R power to next-gen ‘370Z’

Midlife: Nissan has just released an upgraded MY2007 350Z range.

Natural-breathing 3.7-litre V6 is set to drive Nissan's 2009 350Z coupe replacement

6 Jun 2007

NISSAN’S next-generation Z sportscar will take on GT-R power when it arrives here in 2009. Sources within Nissan have confirmed that the 350Z replacement, codenamed Z34, will use the newly announced VQ37VHR (HR for High Response) 3.7-litre DOHC 24-valve V6.

Of course, the next GT-R’s engine will be turbocharged, and drive all four wheels, as opposed to just the rear ones in the Z-car.

Nissan will reveal the next production GT-R, the R36, at the Tokyo motor show in October.

In naturally-aspirated Infiniti G37 four-seater coupe guise, as the first Nissan to use the 3.7-litre V6, it delivers 246kW of power and 366Nm of torque, and is mated to a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic gearbox.

Nissan claims there are big gains in engine efficiency, with welcome rises in both performance and economy.

This is partly due to the new VVEL variable-valve timing technology, which combines hydraulic-controlled variable valve timing and electronically controlled variable valve lift on the intake side.

The upshot is that "370Z" will probably be used as the new car’s name, although "360Z" is also a possibility.

In contrast, the recently introduced MY07 350Z, using a smaller variation of the new engine family dubbed VQ35HR, produces 230kW and 358Nm.

12 center imageLeft: GT-R prototype and current 350Z (below).

The Z34 is also expected to have a wider track than the current Z33 350Z, which should bring improvements to handling and roadholding properties.

Everything else will be an evolution of the current car, which made its world debut at the 2001 Tokyo motor show.

Expect to see a revised version of the Z33’s FM (Front Midship) front-engine/rear-wheel drive platform, featuring a development of the current multi-link independent suspension system.

Apparently, Nissan’s engineers have softened the current model’s overly firm ride quality, without sacrificing any of its steering and handling characteristics.

Visually, the new Z-car will sport a completely redesigned body, featuring a smoother nose, a slightly more raked windscreen and wider wheelarches to take advantage of the wider-track layout.

One area in which Nissan is believed to have made the biggest departure from the 350Z is inside, where higher quality, soft-feel materials will swathe an all-new dashboard.

Nissan has also reportedly implemented more storage areas in the new car, answering another of the 350Z’s biggest cabin-based criticisms. Taller folk are also likely to experience better headroom and legroom, although the advances are believed to be marginal.

Once again, Nissan will offer a two-seater Z-car convertible, to be released within 12 months of the on-sale date of the two-seater coupe.

The Z34 will be the sixth-generation Nissan Z-car since the Datsun Fairlady/240Z was released in 1969. The new Z-car is expected to make its world debut in late 2008.

Read more:

First drive: Nissan winds up the 350Z wick

Read Nissan 350Z news and reviews

First look: GT-R Proto a production showcase

Nissan looks over the Skyline

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