Nissan is using the Chicago Auto Show and a personal coming-out party for their NISMO brand, and the 2014 Nissan 370Z NISMO is the latest high-performance car to make its debut.
Available this summer, the 2014 Nissan 370Z NISMO features improvements to the engine, suspension, styling, interior and everywhere else. The mission is to create a factory warrantied, track-ready version of the 370Z – and it’s plain to see that Nissan took the challenge very seriously.
The 3.7L V6 engine has been boosted to 350 horsepower (up from 332) and 276 lb.-ft of torque with variable valve control, a new exhaust system and tuned muffler. Mated to a 6-speed manual transmission with automatic throttle-blipping, Nissan expects the 370Z NISMO to be much faster from 0-60mph than the standard 370Z.
The transmission also uses a unique SynchroRev Match system, that adjusts engine speed during shifts to match the new gear – kind of the first “automatic stick shift,” in a way. Drivers can turn off the system with the push of a button, if they wish.
The real fun of all NISMO models is the solid chassis and suspension, and splashy design elements. The 2014 370Z NISMO is no stranger to any of that. A new front fascia design and chin spoiler lead into special side sills and aerodynamic rear bumper. With 19-inch RAYS alloy wheels in gunmetal paint, plus giant 14-inch front brakes fitted with red calipers and black-accented body kit, you won’t mistake the 2014 370Z NISMO for anything else on the road.
Which is very much the point. The 370Z NISMO is a Scion FR-S on deer antler spray, a loud and brash sports car that wants desperately to be a track star. It will be interesting to see how much the car weighs, and whether its values are overshadowed by its price. But for now, it’s great to see automakers dedicated to performance and you can’t fault Nissan for bringing their A-Game.