After three months with the Management Fleet Nissan 370Z GT Edition, has our man been convinced to buy one?[Not a valid template]
|Date acquired:||February 2015|
|Kilometres this month:||986|
|Costs this month:||$0|
|L/100km this month:||11.2|
For the past two months, my colleague AJ has been pondering whether or not to buy a 370Z, and on paper at least, there are credible reasons why he should. While 332bhp and 269lb ft of torque from a naturally aspirated 3.7-litre V6 may not seem like much in the 500hp+ world of crankandpiston.com, the Z has proven a popular favourite amongst the team. Well, not the photographers obviously: no rear seats, limited boot space and a brace bar for added rigidity on our GT Edition test model left little room for camera equipment.
No, where the Z has impressed is with its manoeuvrability. We’ll admit there was slightly more wooliness in the steering than we had expected and a lively rear that made putting the power down out of slow corners difficult to impossible without the traction control kicking in. But there was impressive balance, aided by clever weight distribution and a low centre of gravity. Feed power in gently to the rear axle and keep the nose tight on turn-in (give or take a little play in the steering) and the 370Z proved remarkably agile.
As a result, the Z’s time on-track during Drift Republic at the Umm Al Quwain Motorplex was a similarly impressive eye-opener, the stiff chassis and taut suspension (following a quick stop at the service centre) demonstrating the Nissan’s potential. We can but wonder how it would perform with a manual gearbox and a proper handbrake.
One thing that did surprise though was the Nissan’s performance through the long sweepers, during which the stiffened suspension and less than precise steering feel made for a more squirrelly ride than expected. While grip from the tyres was impressive nonetheless and lean but a trifle, under lateral load you start to wonder if the limit is much closer than expected.
Still, our time with the Z left AJ with plenty to think about: great looks, great manoeuvrability, solid acceleration, good agility through the slower turns, reasonable running and maintenance costs, a not-too-hideous price tag, and a drift weapon in the making. Would he, after three months getting to know the Z, bite the bullet and sign on the dotted line for one of his own?
Yep, more than likely.
|Nissan||370Z GT Edition|
|Engine:||V6 / 3696cc|
|Power||332bhp @ 7000rpm|
|Torque||269lb ft @ 5200rpm|
|Transmission||Seven-speed automatic / rear-wheel drive|
|Front suspension||Double wishbone with aluminium component|
|Rear suspension||Independent Multi-link with aluminium and steel component|
|Brakes||Power-assisted four-wheel / 355mm ventilated disc front and rear / ABS / EBD / EA|
|Wheels||19 x 9" RAYS (front) / 19 x 10" RAYS (rear) / super lightweight forged alloys|
|Tyres||245/40R19 94W (front) / 275/35R19 96W (rear)|