The iconic Nissan 370Z Coupe remains, in 2016, as one of the most vibrant and dynamic sports cars available in North America, as well as one of the best performance values – with a standard 332-horsepower 3.7-liter DOHC V6 engine, choice of 6-speed manual transmission or a 7-speed automatic transmission.
Following last year’s addition of two new trim levels – Sport and Sport Tech – to the previously available 370Z and Touring grades, the Z® Coupe lineup again offers buyers a choice of four well-equipped models. There are no option packages.
For 2016, enhancements include the addition of a new Deep Blue Pearl exterior color and a new available Bose® audio system incorporating Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) and Active Sound Enhancement (ASE).
The ANC system generates canceling sound to help remove undesirable low frequency engine noise while preserving invigorating sounds of engine performance, providing a more “pure” sound. The system is also utilized on the famed Nissan GT-R. The ASE enhances natural engine sounds to help bolster the driver’s acceleration experience.
Also available again in 2016 are the Nissan 370 NISMO and 370Z NISMO Tech, along with three 370Z Roadster models – 370Z Roadster, 370Z Touring Roadster and 370Z Touring Sport Roadster (for details, please visit NissanNews.com).
Dynamic Motion – in Design and Performance
Though it has been more than 45 years since the arrival of the original 240Z, its influence remains strong in the sports car world and in the design of the current generation 370Z Coupe. The iconic shape, formed by the combination of a short wheelbase, wide track, low center of gravity and fluid silhouette, is as instantly recognizable today as it was in 1970.
The aerodynamic exterior design incorporates intentional 240Z styling cues, a sleek aerodynamic shape, a “dynamic motion” feel with a dramatic cantilevered roof and a “low visual gravity.” The sleek profile is defined by its upswept quarter window design that is echoed by the dynamic upward curvature in the lower rocker panel and the sense of the taut sheet metal molding itself around the wheels and frame.
Another distinctive feature of the bold exterior design is the headlight/taillight treatment, which features a fierce “boomerang” shape. High Intensity Discharge (HID) bi-functional xenon headlights with auto on/off feature with LED daytime running lamps are standard.
The intense broad-shouldered rear shape is highlighted by the integration of the boomerang taillights and wide, flared rear fenders. Attention to detail and functionality is evident throughout the exterior design, including a flashing side marker lamp/emblem (turn signal lamp not available on base 370Z). The rear fascia is accented by a red rear center reflector. A front chin spoiler and rear spoiler are standard on Sport and Sport Tech grades.
The coefficient of drag is 0.30 for the 370Z and Touring models and 0.29 for the Sport and Sport Tech grades. The 370Z Sport and Sport Tech grades also feature zero front lift and zero rear lift, thanks to extensive aerodynamics efforts – including an “inverse area” front bumper design which a smooth flow of air to the sides of the vehicle, while the rear design maximizes the control of air flow from the roof to the rear hatch.
Underlying the aggressive appearance of the 370Z Coupe is a light, highly rigid structure designed for enhanced performance. The FM platform provides a refined foundation for the well-proportioned body – which includes a 100.4-inch wheelbase, 167.5-inch overall length, 72.6-inch width and 51.8-inch height – giving it a classic sports car look and feel.
The body features aluminum door panels, along with an all-aluminum hood and an aluminum hatch. A front suspension cradle, rear structural reinforcements and an underbody “V-bar” are designed to help reduce front and rear lateral bending (versus the previous generation design). The design also uses a carbon fiber composite radiator housing and strengthened rear fender and hatch areas.
The 2016 370Z is offered in eight exterior colors: Pearl White, Brilliant Silver, Magnetic Black, Solid Red, Gun Metallic, Black Cherry, Magma Red and new Deep Blue Pearl (replaces Midnight Blue).
A Driver-Oriented Cockpit
The interior of the 2016 370Z Coupe continues the longstanding Z® tradition of enhancing driving pleasure. The traditional 2-seat layout is built around a deeply scooped instrument panel with a full-length center console separating the driver and passenger’s seat. The design focus incorporates a “layer concept,” with an information layer, an operation layer and a holding layer.
The information layer provides good visibility with easy access to all key data. The gauges are attached to the steering column, so the driver doesn’t have to choose between their preferred steering wheel position and visibility of the gauges. The large upper steering wheel opening in front of the gauges is designed to provide a good view of the readouts.
The instrument panel retains the traditional 3-pod cluster with oil temperature, voltmeter and clock, while the speedometer and tachometer include an “initial sweep” function, coming alive when the Z® is first started.
The operation layer includes the steering wheel, shifter and switchgear. The steering wheel is an “oval” 3-spoke design, which offers baseball-style stitching and large thumb grips and palm rest areas for improved feel on long drives. The surface of the leather-wrapped wheel is “shaved” to provide a more kidney-like shape to better fit in the hand.
The manual transmission shifter is padded in different areas to improve the accuracy of diagonal shifts and to feel softer in the hand for forward and backward motions.
The holding layer includes the seats, kneepads and door trim support. The driver’s seat is uniquely different from the passenger’s seat, with lower seat cushion cutouts on the sides where the thighs rest – allowing the driver to push on the pedals without the seat fighting them. The seat frame is constructed to help hold the driver in place during cornering. Both the driver and passenger’s seats are structured with an anti-slip material in the main seating surface.
The sporty woven cloth seats feature standard 8-way driver’s/4-way passenger manual adjustments, with heated 4-way power-adjustable synthetic suede and leather-appointed sport seats standard with the Touring model. Adjustable front seat Active Head Restraints are also standard.
The door armrests have been designed to help provide extra support when cornering and the kneepads are integrated to help the driver maintain the proper position while cornering.
Standard interior comfort and convenience features include Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push Button Start, power windows with one-touch auto up/down feature, power door locks with auto-lock feature, a center console box with a non-intrusive cover design, automatic climate control, rear window defroster with timer, two 12-volt power outlets, three cupholders, dual overhead map lights, Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System and a AM/FM/CD/AUX 4-speaker audio system with illuminated steering wheel-mounted controls.
The Touring model adds standard 4-way power adjustable heated sport seats with adjustable lumbar support, glove box damper, heated outside sideview mirrors, side turn signal lamp, aluminum-trimmed pedals and retractable cargo cover.
Both the Touring and Sport Tech models also include the Nissan Hard Drive Navigation System with 7.0-inch VGA touch-sensitive display, NavTrafficâ with Real-Time Traffic Information and NavWeather (SiriusXM® subscription required, sold separately) – along with SiriusXM Satellite Radio (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), Streaming audio via Bluetooth®, HomeLink® Universal Transceiver, auto-dimming mirror and RearView Monitor.
The Touring, Sport and Sport Tech models also add Bose® audio system with eight speakers (includes dual subwoofers), with the new Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) and Active Sound Enhancement (ASE) systems as standard.
The 370Z interior features standard Black cloth, while the other three models offer a choice of Gray, Black or Persimmon leather-appointed and synthetic suede seating and synthetic suede door panel inserts.
The Pure Performance of a 332-horsepower V6
Along with its iconic style and full-feature cockpit, the 370Z Coupe once again delivers exhilarating performance. The standard 3.7-liter VQ37VHR engine with VVEL (Variable Valve Event and Lift) is rated at 332 horsepower @ 7,000 rpm and 270 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm.
Key to the outstanding performance is the VVEL system, which is able to optimize intake valve open/close movements, allowing the needed air to be sent promptly to the combustion chamber at the precisely optimized time.
Since the VVEL system can adjust to open the valves slightly, it improves fuel efficiency by reducing camshaft friction and fuel waste. It also provides cleaner emissions by allowing for quicker warm-up of the catalyst and by stabilizing combustion when the engine is cool.
The engine is backed by a choice of two advanced transmissions, both designed to improve driver performance. The close-ratio 6-speed manual includes an available synchronized downshift rev matching system (Sport and Sport Tech models), which allows drivers of any skill level to experience professional-like gearshift performance. The SynchroRev Match® function automatically controls and adjusts engine speed when shifting to the exact speed of the next gear position, essentially “blipping” the throttle to smooth out any up/down shifts.
This not only allows the driver to focus more on braking and steering, it improves the smoothness of gear shifts by reducing the typical “shock” when the clutch is engaged. The system can be deactivated with a button next to the shifter for drivers who prefer to shift on their own. The SynchroRev Match® system is offered as part of the optional Sport Package.
The available 7-speed automatic with Downshift Rev Matching (DRM) and Adaptive Shift Control (ASC) is designed to offer quick, manual-like shifting when operated in manual mode with a target time of 0.5 seconds between shifts. With optimized torque converter lock-up logic, the 7-speed automatic feels very direct, like a manual transmission. The 7-speed’s wide gear ratios offer improved fuel efficiency (versus a 5-speed automatic), while the Adaptive Shift Control is designed to adjust to the driver’s driving style. Paddle shifters are standard on Touring, Sport and Sport Tech grades.
Fuel economy is rated at 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway for the 7-speed automatic and 18 mpg city/ 26 mpg highway for the 6-speed manual transmission.
The double-wishbone front suspension uses lightweight forged aluminum arms, a lightweight rigid aluminum-alloy cradle, and hollow construction stabilizer bar. The independent multi-link rear suspension is also stiffer and lighter than the previous generation design, with the rear cradle entirely integrated into a single part (no welding). “High response” shock absorbers are utilized on each corner, with ride comfort enhanced through reduced shock friction.
The suspension was revised last year to better meet the needs of sport and daily driving. Enhancements included better steering feel through use of revised steering column bushings and steering software, as well as better noise isolation through use of a revised front engine mount design and improved body insulation.
Steering is provided by a vehicle-speed-sensitive power-assisted rack-and-pinion design that provides improved response. Unwanted steering kickback and vibrations are reduced through use of a solenoid valve that acts like a damper when there is a harsh impact load. Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) is standard.
The 370Z and 370Z Touring include standard 4-wheel vented disc brake system that includes Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist.
The Sport and Sport Tech models offer Nissan Sport Brakes with large diameter 14.0-inch front and 13.8-inch rear rotors (versus 12.6-inch front/ rear standard rotors) with 4-piston front and 2-piston rear aluminum red-finish calipers.
The 370Z and 370Z Touring models feature black-finished 18×8-inch front/18×9-inch 5-spoke lightweight aluminum-alloy wheels with 225/50R18 front/245/45R18 rear Yokohama ADVAN Sport high performance summer tires. Sport and Sport Tech grades offer standard 19×9-inch front/19×10-inch rear RAYS forged lightweight aluminum-alloy wheels with Bridgestone Potenza RE050A 245/40R19 front and 275/35R19 rear tires.
The long list of standard safety and security features includes the Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and occupant classification sensor; front seat-mounted side impact supplemental air bags; roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags; seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters, Active Head Restraints, Zone Body Construction with front and rear crumple zones, Nissan Vehicle Immobilizer System, Vehicle Security System and Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).