The Nissan Z series has been an iconic sports car for over half a century, captivating automotive enthusiasts with its stunning design, superior performance, and rich heritage. In this article, we'll take a journey through the generations of the Nissan Z and explore the legacy of this timeless classic, including the 0-60 times, 1/4 mile times, horsepower, and torque for each model.
First Generation: 240Z (1969-1973)
The first-generation 240Z was introduced in 1969 and was a huge success for Nissan. It was designed to compete with sports cars from Europe, such as the Porsche 911 and the Jaguar E-Type, but at a more affordable price. The 240Z had a sleek, aerodynamic design and was powered by a 2.4-liter straight-six engine that produced 151 horsepower and 146 lb-ft of torque. It featured a four-speed manual transmission and had a 0-60 time of 8 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of 16.2 seconds. The 240Z quickly gained a reputation for being a fun-to-drive, affordable sports car and is now considered a classic.
Second Generation: 280Z (1975-1978)
The second-generation 280Z was introduced in 1975 and featured a larger 2.8-liter engine that produced 170 horsepower and 163 lb-ft of torque. It also had a refined exterior design that made it more aerodynamic. The 280Z had a 0-60 time of 7.7 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of 16 seconds. The 280Z was available with a five-speed manual or a three-speed automatic transmission and was praised for its smooth ride and responsive handling.
Third Generation: 300ZX (1984-1999) Z31
The Nissan 300ZX Z31 was first introduced in 1984 as a successor to the popular 280ZX. It featured a bold, aerodynamic design that was ahead of its time, with a low, wide stance and sharp, angular lines. The Z31 was available in both coupe and t-top convertible models, with a choice of two engines: a 3.0-liter V6 and a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6. Inside, the Z31 featured a luxurious interior with advanced technology, including a digital dashboard display, voice warning system, and automatic climate control. It also had a host of performance features, including four-wheel steering, adjustable suspension, and a limited-slip differential.
The non-turbo Nissan 300ZX Z31 was powered by a 3.0-liter V6 engine that produced 160 horsepower and 173 lb-ft of torque. With a curb weight of around 3,100 pounds, the non-turbo model could accelerate from 0-60 mph in around 8 seconds and complete the quarter-mile in just over 16 seconds.
The turbocharged Nissan 300ZX Z31, also known as the 300ZX Turbo, was a much more potent performer. Its 3.0-liter V6 engine featured a turbocharger and intercooler, which boosted its output to 200 horsepower and 227 lb-ft of torque. With a curb weight of around 3,400 pounds, the turbo model could accelerate from 0-60 mph in around 6 seconds and complete the quarter-mile in just over 14 seconds.
Third Generation: 300ZX (1990-1996) Z32
The Nissan 300ZX Z32 was introduced in 1990 as a replacement for the Z31. It featured sleek, aerodynamic styling and was powered by a choice of two engines: a naturally aspirated V6 and a twin-turbocharged V6. The Z32 was designed with performance in mind, and it delivered in spades.
The non-turbo model was equipped with a 3.0-liter V6 engine that produced 222 horsepower and 198 lb-ft of torque. This engine was mated to a 5-speed manual transmission or a 4-speed automatic transmission. With the manual transmission, the non-turbo Z32 could go from 0 to 60 mph in 6.0 seconds and complete the quarter-mile in 14.5 seconds at 96 mph.
The twin-turbo model on the other hand, was fitted with a 3.0-liter V6 engine that produced 300 horsepower and 283 lb-ft of torque. This engine was paired with a 5-speed manual transmission or a 4-speed automatic transmission. With the manual transmission, the turbocharged Z32 could go from 0 to 60 mph in just 5.0 seconds and complete the quarter-mile in 13.5 seconds at 101 mph.
Fourth Generation: 350Z (2003-2009) Z33
The fourth-generation 350Z was introduced in 2003 and marked a return to the traditional Z design. It featured a powerful 3.5-liter V6 engine that produced 287 horsepower and 274 lb-ft of torque. The 350Z had a 0-60 time of 5.5 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of 14.1 seconds. The 350Z was praised for its aggressive styling and its responsive handling, which made it a popular choice for driving enthusiasts.
Fifth Generation: 370Z (2009-2020) Z34
The fifth-generation 370Z was introduced in 2009 and is the current iteration of the Nissan Z series. It features a powerful 3.7-liter V6 engine that produces 332 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque. The 370Z has a 0-60 time of 5.2 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of 13.7 seconds. The 370Z features a number of performance upgrades, including larger brakes, a sport-tuned suspension, and a limited-slip differential. It also has a refined interior with advanced technology features, such as a touchscreen display and a Bose audio system.
Sixth Generation: 2023 Nissan Z
The 2023 Nissan Z marks the latest chapter in the history of the Nissan Z series. It features a powerful 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that produces 400 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. The 2023 Nissan Z has a 0-60 time of under 4.5 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of under 13 seconds. It also features a number of performance upgrades, such as a sport-tuned suspension and a limited-slip differential, as well as advanced technology features, such as a digital dashboard and a 9-inch touchscreen display.
As we look to the future, it's clear that the Nissan Z series will continue to be a symbol of excellence in the world of sports cars. With its rich history and promising future, the Z car remains an inspiring example of engineering innovation and driving passion.