Nissan hints to a new RWD sportscar?

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Make anything FWD with a Z badge on it and enthusiasts will lose their minds.
Indeed they would. Don't get me wrong, i'm all for a RWD small Z car (always have been), i'm just curious to see what could be done with a different approach. Maybe it would create new enthusiasts.
 

homeforsummer

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If the next Z is to sell well, it needs to be more assured of it's own ethos. Right now it's stuck somewhere in between light weight sports car and GT-esque muscle coupe.

It's not nearly as fast or refined as a Mustang GT or Camaro nor as fun and full of life as an MX-5 or ZN.
I quite like the current Z. Granted, I've only driven the Nismo version, and it definitely has faults - the engine is really unenthusiastic up high, and the Nismo is quite expensive compared to the regular one - but the 'GT-esque muscle coupe' thing is quite appealing since there really aren't many cars like that in the market.

It's just quite satisfying in an old-school sort of way. I'm aware it's not as capable/fun as a GT86 if you're really pushing it, but I suspect for most people most of the time it'd be the more fun, simply because all the controls have a bit more heft and there's obviously a lot more power and torque. Cabin is better than the Subaru/Toyota too.

I suspect the problem is bigger in the States, where there's greater access to affordable and powerful stuff and something like the Z doesn't stand out much any more. And since the US is (I expect) the Z's biggest market still, it makes sense to go with what that market wants.
Not happening, trust me.
Nakamura did say "You will probably see something like this in our future lineup" when referring to the Gripz, but I interpreted it to mean it's more likely to be a Juke than a Z.
 

R1600Turbo

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Nakamura did say "You will probably see something like this in our future lineup" when referring to the Gripz, but I interpreted it to mean it's more likely to be a Juke than a Z.
Yeah maybe they will add additional cars using the badge, but I'm just saying the Z car won't change it's general layout.
 
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Is that fwd concept, more to do with the GT-R LM? As in Nissan taking a step out and trying something not done before? I understand it had to do with it being a "GT-R". It didn't solely work as a highspeed race car but, as an affordable performance road car, it just may work. However, it does seem like it winds up being the second coming of the DC2 Honda Integra.
 

R1600Turbo

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What FWD concept? And remember the GT-R LM was FWD based but if it had been working as designed it would have been AWD on corner exit acceleration.
 
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Hold on. The IDX NISMO will be in FF8. It might be in the FF8 thread but, they need to mass produce it.
 
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I won't. I'll write to a prince in the middle east and tell him he and I needs one of those. Nissan will have to make a few, like they did with the Juke-R. :P
Also worked with that Aston Martin Zagato concept.
 
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A sporty crossover could be a cool idea, but that would be a massive middle finger to the Z car heritage. If anything, the Z car should remain as a two door sports coupe (perhaps with turbocharged engines) and the sports crossover should be a replacement for the Juke.
 
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Well the current Z has, arguably, an entire niche to itself (hi-performance grand touring muscle coupe thing) and it's floundering. It would be pretty dumb of Nissan management to make another product in its mold. In the current car's defense, it's pretty good, honestly. It looks good and it seems to be good value. The new 7 speed auto is damned close to as good as dual clutch, and better in some situations. I just don't think there's any demand for the car. That could incentivize a shift in strategy for future Z's. If nothing else, it needs back seats. 2 seat coupes are kind of extinct now in the affordable segments.
 

R1600Turbo

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Well the current Z has, arguably, an entire niche to itself (hi-performance grand touring muscle coupe thing) and it's floundering.
For what it's worth, I've heard "it's still selling well" a few times so even though it's not selling in huge numbers, they don't really consider it as struggling.
 
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Its sales haven't dropped any after the initial drop after the introductory year, so Nissan is probably fine with where they are now. They market is a lot more packed than it was when the 350z was running around.



The real question is that even though it's selling well enough that they don't feel worried about it, what do they do when it comes time to replace it?
 

homeforsummer

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I imagine the 370Z is probably quite low-risk for Nissan at the moment. Given its similarities to the 350Z it must have sold enough to cover its development costs ages ago. The problem, as @Tornado is correct in saying, is how they replace it. A crossover of some sort is the easy way out as the costs of development can almost certainly be shared with something else.

But developing an all-new rear-drive platform in a shrinking market? Difficult to justify. Unless you go halfsies with someone, like Toyota and BMW are for the Z5/Supra. Renault seems unlikely - there's the new Alpine, but a compact, four-cylinder, mid-engined car isn't really any more 'Z' than a crossover. And Nissan's bigger stake in Mitsubishi will hardly yield anything suitable.
 

R1600Turbo

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I imagine the 370Z is probably quite low-risk for Nissan at the moment. Given its similarities to the 350Z it must have sold enough to cover its development costs ages ago. The problem, as @Tornado is correct in saying, is how they replace it. A crossover of some sort is the easy way out as the costs of development can almost certainly be shared with something else.

But developing an all-new rear-drive platform in a shrinking market? Difficult to justify. Unless you go halfsies with someone, like Toyota and BMW are for the Z5/Supra. Renault seems unlikely - there's the new Alpine, but a compact, four-cylinder, mid-engined car isn't really any more 'Z' than a crossover. And Nissan's bigger stake in Mitsubishi will hardly yield anything suitable.
They could have developed a chassis that worked for the IDx and a new Z and doubled up on earnings potential with two cars, but no....
 
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What's stopping Nissan from using the platform from the new Q60 for the next Z car? Makes sense since the last two iterations of the Z car have shared its platform with the Infiniti G series.
 

homeforsummer

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They could have developed a chassis that worked for the IDx and a new Z and doubled up on earnings potential with two cars, but no....
But that would only have worked had the IDx sold in big enough numbers that the pair could jointly justify their existence.

And much as I'd have absolutely loved to see the IDx - the Freeflow especially, as the Nismo felt a little heavy-handed to me - I'm not sure it'd have been a great success. People on the internet love to say they'll buy lightweight, rear-wheel drive, manual-transmission cars that prioritise finesse over power, and then when they go on sale everyone goes and buys more powerful, heavier, automatic performance cars instead because the lightweight car in question is deemed too slow.

Unfortunately for people like us, the traditional sports car market is in a state of decline. There's every chance that if Nissan were to have spread the costs of a new platform between an IDx and a new Z-car it still might not even match the sales of the first few years of 370Z production. In the States, the 370Z has only ever done, at best, less than half the sales of the 350Z before it.
What's stopping Nissan from using the platform from the new Q60 for the next Z car? Makes sense since the last two iterations of the Z car have shared its platform with the Infiniti G series.
Potentially possible, though it'd take quite some re-engineering to turn it into a suitable sports car, particularly if it's to be sold at a reasonable price. The Q60 weighs an insane amount for a start.
 
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Maybe if the iDX were a sedan like
images

Seeing how small sports sedans/hatches have 2 extra doors nowadays. Beck, even Renault switched up to offering extra doors as the top sports models now.

Maybe that was a factor in why small 2-door sedans and hatches, are not in the cards for Nissan. The market is all about the feelling of space means extra doors.
 

homeforsummer

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Nissan's already been there and done that in concept form - the 2005 Foria:

Nissan-Foria_mp7_pic_34505.jpg


Front engined, rear drive. One of many, many quite cool concepts Nissan has shown and then never got around to making (see also: Urge, Jikoo, Esflow...)
 

R1600Turbo

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Front engined, rear drive. One of many, many quite cool concepts Nissan has shown and then never got around to making (see also: Urge, Jikoo, Esflow...)
This one upset me back in the day:

2741f9f9-4943-45da-8a8a-10d06e48b8f7-768x432-force.jpg


And let's not forget this one.

nissan_sport_coupe_concept_img_34413.jpg
 
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It's still good to gauge public reaction 10years after that.

It's amazing Nissan made the Z work for nearly 50 years. If it's going to be a 2+2 crossover, I guess the Juke is a good testbed.
 

Wolfe

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People on the internet love to say they'll buy lightweight, rear-wheel drive, manual-transmission cars that prioritise finesse over power, and then when they go on sale everyone goes and buys more powerful, heavier, automatic performance cars instead because the lightweight car in question is deemed too slow.

Unfortunately for people like us, the traditional sports car market is in a state of decline.
Enthusiasts with less-than-significant disposible income are too educated on other options in the used market, which are generally more lightweight and "pure" than the best you can expect from today's cars. It's difficult to justify sinking your finances to cast one "vote" on principle, in a declining segment, for a car that simply isn't as "pure" as a number of alternatives you can buy with cash.

The economic reality is that affluent customers determine the trends.
 

homeforsummer

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Enthusiasts with less-than-significant disposible income are too educated on other options in the used market, which are generally more lightweight and "pure" than the best you can expect from today's cars. It's difficult to justify sinking your finances to cast one "vote" on principle, in a declining segment, for a car that simply isn't as "pure" as a number of alternatives you can buy with cash.

The economic reality is that affluent customers determine the trends.
While I agree, there will always be a segment of customers only interested in buying a brand-new vehicle, who wouldn't consider the used option. I suspect you could find plenty of such people even on GTP, and certainly throughout the rest of the internet, but my point was that in general those people on the internet claim they want something and then actually buy something else.

I like the purity of older cars and it's why I'm able to climb back into the MX-5 after some of the stuff I drive and still enjoy it... but I like what newer cars offer too and would absolutely be in the market for something light, small, rear-drive, manual-transmission and finesse-over-power if it hit the right spot.

The new MX-5 doesn't for me unfortunately, but I'm holding out hope that Toyota builds the SF-R it showed in Tokyo as something of MX-5 size, performance, affordability and modern-car amenities, but a potentially better driving experience (the GT86 is better to drive than the MX-5, so I'd expect the SF-R to be) would be right up my street. And I certainly do prioritise driving purity over lots of turbocharged boost or whatever (if I'm looking for a deliberately fun car at least), so I'm not the kind of person who'd swerve off to a hot hatch at the last moment claiming the sports car was too slow.
 

TheCracker

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Maybe that was a factor in why small 2-door sedans and hatches, are not in the cards for Nissan. The market is all about the feelling of space means extra doors.

i'd say the real reason why manufacturers of smaller hatches and saloons are dropping the 2/3 doors is more to do with the fact that in this day and age of parking assist, touch-screen multi media systems and all the other conveniences that even quite cheap and modest cars come with, the process of folding a front seat up for rear passengers to squeeze in and out of every time, is probably seen as an old fashioned inconvenience. Even small cars are not so small anymore, so the packaging of an extra pair of rear doors is easier to factor in.
 

VXR

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I've had a coupe for 7 years and I absolutely am fed up of getting out to let people in.