Nissan is struggling. The company recently killed off its Datsun brand overseas (again) in an attempt to cut $2.8 billion in annual costs, now planning to focus solely on key markets like China and the US as part of a larger plan – called Nissan Next – to turn things around. And the video we saw recently could be the first step in the right direction.
The one-minute clip entitled, "From A to Z," previews a few of the vehicles Nissan has planned in the next few years. Some of the more prominent examples include the Frontier pickup, the Rogue crossover, and of course, the Z sports car. The clip doesn't show much, but in it we see the brief silhouette of the upcoming new Z – and based on what we saw, it could look much different than the current model.
Our rendering imagines a Nissan 400Z (at least, we think that's what it will be called) that's much sleeker than the current 370Z. The rounded headlights are a sharp contrast to the current Z's angular ones, and the grille is more prominent, hidden beneath a shark-like nose. That long bonnet also hides what we believe will be a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 borrowed from the Infiniti Q60. If rumours are correct, the next Z could produce 400 bhp (298 kilowatts) standard and as much as 480 bhp (358 kilowatts) in Nismo form.
The overall shape of the rendering should look somewhat familiar to fans of the current model, especially in the roofline. That said, the 400Z rendering actually draws more inspiration from earlier Datsun predecessors like the 240 and 260Z, in particular. The rear is smoother and more sloped than the current 370, the wheelbase is shorter, and the bonnet is longer.
Other notable elements on this concept include two new badges. Both the Z and Nissan logos are brand new, previewed by the brand's two recent patent filings. The new Z badge draws inspiration (again) from the earlier Datsun models, and the revised Nissan wordmark is a modern upgrade to the current one. If these renderings are any indication, the 2021 Nissan 400Z should look sharp.
We were hoping to see the new Nissan 400Z before the end of the year, and that teaser video suggests that a 2020 debut is still possible. But given the current state of affairs, it's more likely that the Nissan 400Z will debut early in 2021 before going on sale later in the same year. And reports say that the Nissan 400Z could cost as much as $40,000 (approx. £32,800) to start, with a base Nismo model exceeding $50,000 (£40,000).