Incorporating The Past. The 2023 Nissan Z will appeal to mature and junior drivers alike. When that happens with a sports car, you know the designers have done something right. Nissan has knocked the new Z’s design out of the park.

Both the exterior and interior of the Z incorporate old-school design elements from past Z models. Look in the right places, and you’ll see design elements from the 240Z, 300ZX, 350Z, and 370Z in the 2023 Z. Beyond being incredibly cool, it gives the sports car a look that’s all its own. For drivers that remember the previous generation of Nissan sports cars, the Z will have them looking back. For young drivers, it creates a new Z for the current generation.

Loads of Performance. Compared to the outgoing 370Z, the Z brings a lot more performance. The Z comes with the same twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that’s found in the INFINITI Red Sport models. The engine pumps out 400 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with either a six-speed manual transmission or a nine-speed automatic.

The V6 engine is an impressive unit, bringing a massive amount of thrust off the line. The automatic transmission has launch control, which brings even quicker acceleration when starting from a stop. Despite the Z gaining 150 pounds over the 370Z, the V6 engine makes up for the extra mass with serious grunt.

The Z is more than just a quick sports car. Nissan has increased torsional rigidity, retuned the suspension, and fitted the sports car with upgraded tires. The result is a Z that has a tremendous amount of grip. Around a track or on a windy road, the sports car brings delightful handling that feels like a true sports car.

Reasonably Priced. There aren’t a lot of sports cars on the market today and automakers are moving upstream with their options. Thankfully, the 2023 Z is priced somewhat affordably with a starting price tag of $41,015 (with destination). The available Performance trim is the one that enthusiasts want and costs $51,015.

For a sports car, even the Performance trim is priced reasonably well. The Z’s closest rival, the Toyota GR Supra, is an extra $11,900 over the base Z with a six-cylinder engine. That, at least in our eyes, makes the Z a great value option.

The Z also comes well-equipped for the money. The base Sport trim comes with an 8-inch touchscreen, six audio speakers, smartphone compatibility, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, and lane departure warning as standard. A 9-inch touchscreen and navigation are optional.

2023 Nissan Z Interior

Intimate Cabin For Two. The Nissan Z’s interior dimensions practically remain the same as the 370Z’s. That means there’s very little space to store items and not a lot of space between the two seats. The new Z offers 38.2 inches of headroom and 42.9 inches of legroom, which is a competitive amount of space, but there’s no way to get around the fact that it’s a sports car.

The Z now comes with a telescoping steering column to help the driver find a good driving position, but there’s little else in the way of comfort. Upgrading to the Performance trim brings a four-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, though the lumbar, thigh, and seat lifter are manually adjustable.

Regardless of whether you plan to go on a weekend trip or to a grocery store, you’ll have to plan ahead. The Z only has 6.9 cubic feet of cargo space.

Final Thoughts. The return of the Nissan Z for the 2023 model year brings some flame back to the Japanese automaker. The Z is a fun, value-packed sports car that delivers an analog experience. Those qualities are getting hard to find.

The Toyota GR Supra is the Z’s main rival. It doesn’t have the same amount of power, but offers sharper handling, has a more upscale look, and delivers rapid acceleration. It’s available with four-cylinder and six-cylinder engines.

An unlikely rival to the Z is the Ford Mustang. It has an iconic look, and multiple powertrains that range from a turbo four-cylinder up to a supercharged V8, it can seat up to four people and delivers impressive performance.

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