Auto-only Z NISMO may disappoint the horsepower-hungry


This is how Nissan introduces the new 2024 NISMO Z: “Amplifying the sports car experience.”

Yes, but—as with the previous, 2014 version—not amplifying it too loud. With 420 horsepower, the Z tuned by Nissan’s performance arm has only 20 more hp than the standard Z, the same increase as the 370-generation NISMO car. And while the new Z comes with a close-ratio six-speed manual transmission, the NISMO version’s only transmission is the nine-speed automatic, making this the first NISMO-tuned Z to ditch a manual. For many potential customers in 2023, that’s two strikes.

However, the Z NISMO avoids a third with a selection of features that could make the car at least a moderately interesting collector’s item and a more willing track car. 

2024 Nissan Z NISMO track motion

Inside, building on the equipment offered on the Performance grade of the regular Z, there are red-anodized engine-start and drive mode buttons, manually adjustible Recaro seats with NISMO logos in the headrests, and a leather- and Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel with a red marker at the 12 o’clock position.

Outside, the front of Z NISMO prominently features a styling element called the “Grand Nose,” which extends farther forward than on other grades. The new front fascia also features a restyled grille opening “with the thinnest honeycomb mesh of any Nissan production car,” for whatever that’s worth. Canards at the car’s front corners create vortexes over the front wheels, further benefiting aerodynamic performance. A red accent runs along the lower edge of the front fascia.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO track motion driving

Out back is a taller, wider rear spoiler with a three-piece design that extends onto the rear fenders. The rear bumper corners are reshaped to aid with air separation and reduced drag; their shape is inspired by the rear of the GT-R NISMO. A red accent runs from the lower edges of the rear fascia and above the exhaust outlets. Z NISMO’s redesigned side sills also help reduce aerodynamic drag and lift.

The roof is black, matching the gloss black 19-inch RAYS wheels. The Z NISMO is offered in five colors: Black Diamond Pearl, Brilliant Silver, Passion Red TriCoat, Everest White Pearl TriCoat, and NISMO-exclusive Stealth Gray shown here.

Z NISMO takes the twin-turbo engine’s power outputs up to 420 horsepower and 384 lb-ft of torque, increases of 20 hp and 34 lb-ft compared to other Z grades. Peak torque is delivered from 2,000 through 5,200 rpm. The extra power comes from a combination of improved cooling, revised electronic wastegate control providing increased turbocharger boost and turbine speed, and an independent ignition spark timing strategy inspired by GT-R NISMO. Z NISMO also features an enhanced engine oil cooler for extended track performance.

The nine-speed automatic has been tweaked with revised clutch packs allowing for faster shifting. Along with revised engine management software, Z NISMO’s transmission has reduced downshift time by almost half, compared to the Z Performance. Launch control also delivers more aggressive standing-start acceleration.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO track motion driving

In addition to Normal and Sport, Z NISMO adds a new Sport+ drive mode. “This delivers a more dynamic, racetrack-tuned shift program for circuit driving,” Nissan says, taking advantage of the powertrain’s faster downshift capability. The shift programming is designed to be so responsive for performance driving that a driver does not need to use the shift paddles on track – though manual shifting is always available.

Suspension-wise, Z NISMO has unique stabilizer bars, a stiffer spring rate, and larger, retuned dampers. Tires are Dunlop SP Sport Maxx GT600s, a version of which are also used on the GT-R. The rear tires measure 10 millimeters wider than those equipped on Z Performance (285/35R19 versus 275/35R19). Wheels are a half-inch wider than the regular Z’s.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO track motion driving

Chassis revisions include bracing and stiffening the chassis. There are stiffer front and rear suspension bushings, and a stiffer mounting bushing for the steering rack. Front brakes are larger, with a more performance-focused brake pad compound.

For the 2024 model year, the Z Performance and NISMO grades add Amazon Alexa Built-in connectivity. Alexa can play music, place calls, control compatible smart home devices, and more, with just voice commands.

Price will be released closer to the fall model introduction. The 2023 base Z starts at $40,990 plus $1095 shipping; the Performance trim upon which the NISMO version is based comes in at $53,210 for 2023.





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    I lost interest the moment it said no manual available. Why in Earth would they NOT offer the manual in what is supposed to be the most driver-focused version???

    It will be interesting to see how much of a premium they charge for this and if it fares any better on the track than the regular “Z”. I expect to be disappointed by the price.

    It’s 13k over the base? No thanks, I’ll buy a base, throw 13k in mods at it, have a much faster and better handling car, all while keeping the third pedal. Pull your heads out of your collective rectums, Nissan.

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