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Nissan 350Z (2003-09)

Overall Rating

4 stars

Nissan's sporty Z is reborn: this two-seater coupe looks fantastic, with great rear-drive handling, and is great value for money. Still prefer an Audi TT? Think again; this is a credible alternative.

For
  • Strong image reinforced by rarity value
  • Performance approaches supercar standards
  • Cabin is well designed and well equipped
Against
  • Rather impractical with little luggage space
  • Thirsty even when driven gently; Group 20 insurance
  • High noise levels could be tiring
Road Test

The poised 350Z shows that Nissan hasn't forgotten how to make a proper sports coupe - it's a completely different proposition from the bloated, elderly 300ZX it replaces. With sharp but predictable rear-drive handling, a slick six-speed gearbox and a smooth 280bhp 3.5-litre V6 engine, the Z rivals the Audi TT. It's a more involving drive than the Chrysler Crossfire. Only the Mazda RX-8 has it beaten - or costlier supercars like the Porsche 911. A convertible is due in the UK by 2005; this will be a realistic alternative to SLK or even Boxster. Although there's no choice of engine or transmission, this desirable, image-rich Nissan is available with lots of options, including a GT pack with leather upholstery, heated/electrically adjustable seats and uprated hi-fi with sub-woofer. There are also NISMO styling and accessories kits. It's highly likely that the GT pack will be essential to justify top resale values.

Need To Know

NCAP: Not tested

Best Models: Only one model - 350Z

Replacement: 2010


Alternatives
Nissan 350Z (2003-09)
Star Ratings

Handling

5 stars

Comfort

4 stars

Quality & Reliability

5 stars

Performance

5 stars

Roominess

3 stars

Running Costs

3 stars

Value for Money

5 stars

Stereo/Sat Nav

4 stars
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