New Nissan Z Debut Set For September 15

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Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

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, Automotive Editor - September 2, 2020

Just a few months ago, we heard that Nissan was planning to replace the ancient 370Z with an all-new Z sports car. Apparently, Nissan’s a lot closer to introducing the model than we originally thought. The automaker recently announced that the Z Proto will be unveiled on September 15. If you weren’t already excited about the news of a new Z sports car in the works, now is the time to get excited.

Along with announcing the official date for the reveal of the Z Proto, Nissan put out a video highlighting the history of the Z sports car with a message that says “Coming Soon.” The video doesn’t provide anything concrete on the upcoming sports car, but does have a tiny audio clip of an engine revving. It could be the new engine or something unrelated.

The “Proto” aspect of the sports car’s name indicates that it’s a prototype. Nissan did something similar with the 2005 GT-R Proto, which paved the way for the current high-performance sports car. Based on that, we expect the Z Proto to look similar to the production-ready version of the Z sports car.

Beyond knowing that Nissan will unveil a prototype of the new Z sports car later this month, we don’t know anything concrete about the vehicle. The sports car will reportedly be called the 400Z and will have a design that’s inspired by the old 240Z and 280Z. Rumors indicate that the Z sports car will come with some kind of V6 engine that could be turbocharged for up to 400 horsepower. Rear-wheel drive and a manual transmission are expected to be available.

According to a previous announcement, Nissan is looking to cut the number of models it sells globally by one-fifth. While sports cars, especially affordable ones, aren’t all that popular these days, the upcoming Z will find a spot in the lineup, showcasing just how important the nameplate is to the brand.

Nissan has offered a sports car with a “Z” in the name for roughly 50 years. The original 240Z that started it all was introduced in 1969. It was a lightweight, two-seat sports car with a 151-horsepower inline-six engine. 1978 saw the introduction of the 280ZX, which went more upstream, but continued to be powered by an inline-six engine.

Around 1984, Nissan came out with the 300ZX that moved to a 3.0-liter V6 engine that was also offered with a turbocharged variant. The fourth generation of the Z sports car was also called the 300ZX, but went with a more modern design and had a turbocharged V6 with up to 300 hp. When 2002 rolled around, Nissan introduced the 350Z, moving to a curvier design and a 3.5-liter V6 engine. The current 370Z that’s on sale has been available since 2009. Like its name implies, the sports car comes with a 3.7-liter V6 engine.

Explore the current 370Z on sale now »

, Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

Follow On: Twitter

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