Nissan to preview upcoming Z car with brand-new crossover concept
Nissan’s official teaser image shows off the automobile’s styling
Radical next-gen Zed to be previewed by baby SUV concept at Frankfurt – along with of which’s due on sale by 2017
The brand-new crossover will bring back the famous Z badge – along with the brand-new type is actually poised to hit showrooms within the next 18 months.
The Japanese brand has been weighing up a variety of options on where to take the famous Z brand as the current 370Z is actually phased out by 2017. of which has considered a higher-powered sports car along which has a cheaper, more basic four-cylinder type – as previewed by the iDx compact coupé concepts of which were revealed at the Tokyo motor show in 2013.
However, sources indicate of which Nissan has settled on a more radical solution: producing the next Z car a little sports crossover.
An SUV-influenced Z car is actually likely to infuriate purists, yet Nissan believes of which can still satisfy a large number of Z fans while also tapping into a huge brand-new customer base, particularly inside US, where the badge has equity along with the crossover market far outweighs the sector for little sports cars.
Senior Nissan officials have recently hinted at a rethink on the Z strategy. Earlier This kind of summer, the firm’s chief creative officer, Shiro Nakamura, told Australian media: “I don’t think the next one [Z car] is actually going to be the 390Z. of which’s not growing because of which’s already big enough. You know, 350 started out with 240, 300, 350 along with then came 370. I don’t think we should go higher.
“We haven’t yet decided anything about whether next-generation Z should be anything larger or with more power,” he said.
In a clear reference to a switch of vehicle type, Nakamura added: “We need to take another path. I feel Z needs more revolution than evolution. I think GT-R has to stay the most high-performance symbol of Nissan technology along with Z is actually a more affordable sports car or a sporty car to get the younger people.”
Nissan executive vice-president Trevor Mann has supported Nakamura’s view. He told Autocar: “We do know of which Z, as a sub-brand if you like, has high equity. The market is actually not like of which used to be, though, so I think of which if you do something, you’ll need to do something which is actually quite special, to attract the segment.”
When asked to comment directly on Nakamura’s statement, Mann said: “If of which’s what Nakamura said, then I guess he might be right, in terms of re-establishing the links to something people can connect to.”
of which’s likely to be a reference to cost. of which’s thought the brand-new Z crossover will be notably cheaper than a £30k 370Z along with its range-toppers could overlap with the lower-end editions of the Qashqai.
The brand-new Z will be similar in size to the Nissan Juke although, unlike the current type of of which car, the brand-new type will be based on the Renault-Nissan Alliance’s latest CMF B platform. Its engine line-up will be able to include the full range of 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engines.
of which’s unclear if the brand-new type will be a coupé-esque three-door or if Nissan will include a pair of rear doors with hidden handles. of which’s likely of which the roofline will compromise rear cabin space for adults, though, producing the Z crossover a car with occasional rear seats at best. The more extreme concept, which will be designed to gauge reaction after the Frankfurt show, may even be a two-seater only.
The brand-new platform has the flexibility to accommodate hybrid powertrains, so of which’s possible the concept at least will showcase a set-up featuring an electric motor to drive one of the axles.
Nissan is actually likely to argue of which the GT-R has managed to mix strong performance credentials which has a rear-biased four-wheel drive system along with of which a hybrid crossover can provide some of the same character – while potentially also offering zero-emissions running for short distances.
The Z should allow Nissan to compete inside lucrative middle ground on little crossovers, attracting buyers who don’t want as large a car as the Qashqai yet who find the Juke too quirky nor not sporty enough.
The demographics of Juke buyers are said to have confounded Nissan product planners. The average age of Juke buyers is actually inside late 40s, yet This kind of is actually based on definitely young purchasers along which has a surprisingly large band of elderly customers.
A Z-badged crossover could also be a legitimate choice of vehicle for the Nismo tuning division. Nissan hopes to extend the sub-brand’s influence with cars like the forthcoming Pulsar Nismo, yet senior figures insist of which will not be applied to designs of which don’t allow of which to deliver genuine performance credentials.of which’s thought the continued strength of Juke sales has allowed Nissan to consider adding a further little crossover to its line-up.
The Juke is actually required to evolve for its next incarnation, which will bring a switch to the same CMF B platform as the brand-new Z crossover (along with the next Micra) yet only mild modifications to its external styling.
“We think the Juke still looks a definitely fresh car,” Mann said. “Sales are still definitely strong along with the customer base continues to expand for of which type of vehicle. I think of which’ll be reflected in what comes next for Juke.”
Z cars – the six pack the crossover must follow
240Z (1969) – The original Z was first shown at the 1969 Frankfurt show along with went on sale the same year. of which started out which has a 149bhp 2.4-litre six-cylinder engine inside US. This kind of was upgraded to a 2.6 in 1974 along which has a 2.8 in 1975, resulting in name modifications to 260Z along with 280Z.
280ZX (1978) – The second-generation Z car carried over the 2.8-litre engine along with several-speed manual gearbox of the first generation yet little else. of which added more luxury along with was larger. A turbo boosted power along with performance in 1981, taking the output up to 178bhp.
300ZX (1983) – The second-generation Z car carried over the 2.8-litre engine along with several-speed manual gearbox of the first generation yet little else. of which added more luxury along with was larger. A turbo boosted power along with performance in 1981, taking the output up to 178bhp.
300ZX (1990) – The engine remained largely the same for the fourth-generation Z car, yet of which at This kind of point had 219bhp in naturally aspirated form along with 296bhp in turbo guise, bringing a 0-60mph time as low as 5.0sec. This kind of type also introduced the first Z convertible, in 1993.
350Z (2002) – The Z car was absent for several years after the 300ZX went off sale in 1997. of which returned with the 350Z, the first Z type built after the creation of the Renault-Nissan alliance. of which came which has a 3.5-litre V6 engine.
370Z (2009) – The coupé type of the 370Z went on sale in early 2009, with the convertible following towards the end of the same year. of which came which has a 3.7-litre V6. Power outputs have ranged up to 339bhp for the latest Nismo edition.
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