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Hotter 350Z strikes SA

2006-09-26 07:25

The sizzling Nissan 350Z just got better

Janine-Lee Gordon

The 350Z is Nissan's global sports car and is the ultimate representation of their shift in success.

The strongest points of this product - being the high performance and striking design, have been improved. Both the 350Z Coupe and the Roadster have been similarly enhanced.

Consumers have realised that you can now own a sports car, while still using it daily to get to work. The new 350Z is one of those cars.

Increased power and acceleration, improved handling, combining with the subtle changes both inside and out, enhances the great package that it's supposed to be.

Power has been upped from 206kW to 216kW at 6 400 r/min, driven from the 24-valve 3.5-litre V6 engine - just saying that out loud makes you want to get one. Although the power has been increased, no mechanical changes have been made to the engine, it is done purely on decreased torque ratios.

Performance is delivered with 0-100 km/h reached in just 5.9 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h. Torque is now at 350 Nm at 4 800 r/ min

A close-ratio six-speed gearbox and a limited-slip differential compliments the 350Z's sportiness.

Driving experience

The driving experience has been adjusted to improve the experience behind the wheel. Handling of this baby is impressive, and it sits on a tight bend like white on rice.

This is achieved by speed sensitive power-assisted steering (TOPS) which has been made lighter and new shock absorbers combined with an improved Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) and ventilated disc brakes. Even the wheels have been given a new design - the six-spoke aluminium alloy wheels already make a big statement on this bold looker.

Styling cues that distinguish the 2006 version of the 350Z include a broader new front bumper with an extended grille. The new headlights give the car a more powerful look, while the new rear combination lamps with LED stop-light reduces electricity consumption.

Interior changes include new soft-feel surfaces and materials, with genuine leather seats and softer armrests, centre console lid, door grip and added soft padding and insert trim.

The addition of genuine brushed aluminium enhances the appearance and quality of the interior, which now offers added storage space in the form of lit door and console mounted cup holders, easy-access door pockets and optimised positioning of switches and controls, with lights in the new steering wheel-mounted audio controls.

While the 350Z is one of the most dramatic manifestations of the changes at Nissan in recent years, its sales success proves that it is more than just a halo model for the brand. With its competitive pricing and excellent dynamics this car is surely a winner.


  • 350Z Coupe - R398 000
  • 350Z Roadster - R430 000
  • 350Z Roadster (Ventilated Seats) - R433 000

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