The hotter Nissan Z Nismo is on the way – or is it?

Photos of a camouflaged Nissan Z test drive in the US have sparked speculation that a hotter version of the Nismo could be in development – but die-hard fans aren’t so sure.

A camouflaged prototype of a Nissan Z sports car was spied in the US – but fans remain split on whether it shows off an upcoming line of dealer accessories or our first look at a flagship Nismo variant.

The prototype also features the 19-inch black alloy wheels and red-accented Recaro sport bucket seats from the previous generation 370Z Nismo, along with new silver brake calipers, leading some online to think it it could be a prototype for an upcoming flagship Z variant, sporting the Nismo (Nissan Motorsport) badge.

However, Zed-car fans were quick to point out that the front end of the prototype isn’t new, but rather appears to be the restyled fairing from the Z Customized Proto concept revealed in Japan in January (below, in orange).

This concept also featured bolt-on wheel arch flares, a taller rear spoiler and a new sports exhaust system – items that seem perfectly suited to a catalog of dealer-installed accessories for the standard Z (below , in yellow), rather than the upgrades needed to create a Nismo.

Nissan Australia would not be drawn on the prototype shown in these images, saying Conduct in a statement: “We cannot comment on product speculation.”

While this test car may not be a Nismo, the door was left open for one person, with Nissan’s US executives hinting to the media that the new Z’s 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 engine can withstand more power.

“Let’s just say we know that customer and we’re trying to meet their needs,” Paul Hawson, Nissan’s director of advanced product planning and strategy, told the US site. The reader in April.

“He can handle more. [There are] people who want to keep stock forever – you know some of these people, I have friends like that – and then there are other people who are more like me, who are crazy about tuning,” Hawson said. .

The new coupe’s 3.0-litre ‘VR30DDTT’ twin-turbo V6 has never developed more than 298 kW and 475 Nm in any vehicle, but it is – officially – linked to the 3.8-litre ‘VR38DETT’ V6 of the GT-R supercar, which offers up to 441kW – but with a different block and different internals.

The previous generation 370Z Nismo extracted 8kW/8Nm more from the base car’s engine – then a naturally aspirated 3.7-litre V6 – and upgraded suspension, brakes, wheels, tires and suspension. aerodynamic package of the car.

Nismo versions of the previous Nissan 350Z and 370Z have arrived between nine months and five years into each car’s life cycle – so if a Nissan Z Nismo is in development, expect to hear more in the years to come.

Alex Misoyannis

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he launched his own website, Redline. He contributed to Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist on the press team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, whether it’s about flipping through car magazines at a young age or growing up around performance. vehicles in a car-loving family.

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