Nissan has been quietly developing the next-generation Fairlady Z since December 2017, according to Japanese auto tabloid Best Car. The magazine claims that despite the many rumors of a “Z35” over the years, Nissan’s priorities had been shifted towards crossovers and electric vehicles. However, it contends, the impending launch of the new Toyota Supra a little over a year ago prompted Nissan to develop the Z in earnest.
The article claims that the new Z will be derived from the same chassis that underpins the Infiniti Q60 coupe, though the wheelbase will be shortened by about 300 mm to 2550 mm, with the total length and width measuring 4520 mm and 1890 mm, respectively. That would give it about the same wheelbase as the current 370Z, but it would be 11 inches longer and 1.5 inches wider.
Several engine options will reportedly be offered, including two versions of the VR30DDTT twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 plucked directly from the Infiniti Q50 Sport and Red Sport. That would mean a an output of about 301 horsepower and 282 lb-ft of torque for the mid-range option (compared to the 370Z’s 332 hp and 270 lb-ft), while the top-of-the-line motor would generate 400 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque.
A smaller engine option is also reportedly under consideration, including Nissan’s amazing variable-compression turbo four. However, we think an inline-six version of this VC-Turbo would be an ideal motor. The motor’s chief engineer Shinichi Kiga has hinted that such an engine would be easy to build.
Buyers may have the option of a 7-speed automatic and 6-speed manual, but it’s not clear which gearboxes will be offered with which engines. Design has not been finalized either, but Best Car‘s sources say that it may adopt a sharper-edged theme more in-line with current Nissans.
Finally, the article theorizes that the concept version will debut at the Tokyo Motor Show this fall, marking the 50th anniversary of the original S30 Fairlady Z. A production model would follow for the 2021 model year.
If true, this would certainly be excellent news, but remember, Best Car‘s reports should always be taken with a generous helping of salt.