Mark your calendars – we now know the date of the ‘400Z’ hype train’s first stop. Nissan has released a teaser video for the ‘Z-Proto’ which merely states “coming soon”, but take a look at the description, and you’ll find 16 September listed as the date of the grand reveal.
As implied by the name, it’ll be a prototype previewing a production car which will – at long last – replace the ageing 370Z. Power is expected to come from Nissan’s VR30DDTT 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6, giving an output of around 400bhp. Rumour has it a manual gearbox will still be involved, despite stick shift becoming increasingly unpopular with sports car buyers.
Anticipation for the 370Z’s successor has been mounting. Last year a 370Z-based test mule was spotted at the Nurburgring, and more recently, Nissan trademarked an all-new Z logo, which is also shown in the teaser video at the top of this page. We even have a rough idea of how the Z-Proto will look, thanks to the car’s appearance in promotional materials a few weeks ago (below). This dispelled rumours floating around a few years ago that suggested the next Z car would be a high-riding crossover.
The programme has seemingly survived drastic €2.8 billion cost-cutting measures at Nissan, which were said to threaten the future of the current 370Z and GT-R in Europe. Amidst that backdrop, a slow-selling, high-investment sports car doesn’t seem like the sagest of choices, but thankfully, it looks Japanese company wants a more emotive choice amidst its many crossovers.