Despite multiple hints that Nissan may be getting ready to retire the Z-car, a new report now suggests that the aging 370Z won’t be the last we see of Nissan’s longest running nameplate.
Nissan chief planning officer Philippe Klein says previous reports of Nissan killing off the rear-drive sports car thanks to dwindling financial justification have been blown out of proportion and that a 370Z successor is indeed being cooked up. “We’re working on it and it’s very present, but I have no indication to give you,” Klein told the auto publication.
That being said, the Nissan exec admits that a “390Z” would have a tough time marketplace-wise as demand for a lightweight sports car shrinks and consumers gravitate en masse to crossovers—the Z-car’s natural antithesis. “The Z is a difficult market,” Klein said. “It is rather shrinking worldwide. But we still believe there is a place for the Z and we want to keep it alive, and that’s what we’re working on.”
In an email to The Drive, a Nissan spokesperson provided this statement from Mr. Klein: “The Nissan Z has been an icon of our brand for nearly 50 years. While it’s too early to comment on specific plans, we believe the possibilities are nearly endless for what attainable, stylish, performance-oriented vehicles may look like in the future.”
Reading between the lines, this humble author predicts a Z-branded crossover due early next decade and available with some form of electric power … officially dubbed the 400ZX, for nostalgia points.