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Old 5th July 2005, 20:43   #1
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Talking I Test Drove the Nissan 350Z!!

Ha ha ha..... Eat your hearts out boys

Friday was a day off work for me.. So I thought what better way to spend the day than to test drive some good sports cars.

So, I went to the Ford dealership to get a load of the Mustang GT. Now here's the problem, the Mustang GT is majorly sold out and will not be available till October.. The dealer had even sold his test drive car

Well, Then I went to the Nissan place and started off with my usual routine.... After some mundane discussions with the sales guy about options, trims and prices, he went to fetch my test drive car....

The 350Z sure knows how to make a good entrance.. The guy emerged in a Silver, touring edition 350z coupe shining in the sunlight.
The 287BHP V-6 growling in the perfect pitch.... Not loud, but deep and bassy. Man, this car looks and sounds amazing.

So, we started with the walk-around... As everyone here must know, there's nothing but superlatives that come to mind when describing this car's design.

And then he popped the hood and let me have a peek at the powerplant. The z's 3.5L v-6 is one of the finest in the business and looks the part too. The battery and the brake fluid compartments are hidden away under lockable rubber covers which makes the engine compartment look really uncluttered... Other fluid tanks (windshield washer et.. al..) are stacked together on the right-side corner and makes for easy access to these. Over-all a very well-thought out layout.

Then we walked around and popped the trunk... or what would have been a trunk. the 350z is a hatchback and as such you would expect huge cargo space available. It would have been too, but I don't know what they did with it... The little boot can just about hold a Gym bag or two.. The sales guy claimed that you can fit an entire set of golf-clubs in it (if you follow the attached diagram ).
Not that there's not enough space in the boot, but there's this thick wide bar running over the boot which makes it tough to put any large object inside it. The sales guy told me that the bar is some kind of anti-roll bar which adds to the vehicle stability.
SO... I can not carry huge suitcases in this car. Ummm... Okay, you can't have everything right?.

Fine, now that we were done with the engine and the boot, he showed me inside the car.
The one he gave me had an eight-way power driver's seat. (the passenger is left to adjust the seats with the knobs and handles etc.. )
Now, I'll be really frank about this. I did not like the interior. A car of this stature shouldn't look all plastic-ky and cheap from the inside... The whole dashboard is cheap black plastic. The steering wheel, the door handles and the gauge-cluster has a hint of brushed aluminium, but thats about it. The rest is just one huge expanse of black plastic
To be fair to the z, its a sports car and not a luxury sedan. But Its more of an excuse than an arguement. I mean, its a major disappointment after being so up-lifted by the gorgeous outside of the car. (Or maybe yours truly is just spoilt for good by the Lexus )

Anyways, the engine was already running, so I did not get the pleasure of hearing it start from scratch. But that's okay, I revved it a couple of times and was thoroughly satisfied by its confident growl.

Now here's the bummer, the test car had only enough gas for about 19 miles (as indicated by the trip computer). Oh yeah, did I mention the trip computer? Its mounted on the dashboard, kinda in the middle and is tilted towards the driver, looks pretty cool. You can see the remaining fuel, range, average fuel consumption etc...

First, the standard car-information sticker was covering almost all of the passenger side window and I couldn't see nothing from that side... so I was at a slight disadvantage there. But apart from that the field of vision is perfect. This baby does not suffer from the sports-car-huge-blindspot-syndrome.
Of all the sports cars that I have driven, this one had the best view all around. It beats the Mustang, the S2000 and the Celica (the Celica, by a mile) in this department.

Now, having established this, I put the car in reverse. (I was driving the auto-tranny). A gentle tap on the gas and the car screeched out of its parking spot. And I went - "Whoa!!! easy little fella!!"

And this was when I truly discovered the allure of the Z. Smooth-refined-power..... so easily available across the power band. Pushed the shift to Drive and took off. It took me a couple of minutes to get used to the awesome acceleration of this car.
Once I got the hang of it, this was by far one of the most fun cars I've ever driven. It was just amazing...
The engine is responsive to a fault. The steering is precise, the brembo brakes have more bite than a rabid rotterweiler.. What more can you ask for???

The drive was everything that I imagined the 350z would be. Fast, responsive and fun. You can't go wrong with this car.

And reluctantly I drove the car back to the dealership and even more reluctantly handed over the keys...

Sorry, I did not have my camera on me, so couldn't get any pics. But if you want pics, try this link - http://www.nissanusa.com/vehicles/Mo...LP&modelName=z

Whew..... Can't believe you read it all the way through

Last edited by Vivek : 5th July 2005 at 20:46. Reason: Freaking Typos
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Old 5th July 2005, 22:24   #2
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"Bhaisaab mileage kya hai!!..."
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Old 5th July 2005, 22:53   #3
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Originally Posted by Conan
"Bhaisaab mileage kya hai!!..."
Vivek Loads his shotgun and aims at Conan

BTW, for real, the mileage is 19 MPG City / 26 MPG Hwy
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Old 5th July 2005, 23:37   #4
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Isn't it funny that we crib about Indians not comming up with sporty, contemporary car designs and here, we're going gaga over a car who's head designer is an Indian!!

It's a good car though and pretty quick too.

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Old 5th July 2005, 23:50   #5
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i drove my friends brothers brand new G35 last Fall..
i dont think i can write a review on my experience ,because these are the kind of cars you see and wish to own one day ..and when you do manage get your hands on one (like i did) you cant really comment on it .. except come up with stuff like
crazy pick up ...great cornering ...slick gear box ..the Thrump of the V6 ...etc ..cause at that time all these things dont matter (not unless ur Jeremy Clarkson or a rich kid who goes grocery shopping in a SVT Cobra)..you know you dreamt about this car and for the next 100 kms your driving it !!

Vivek great review of your experience in the 350z .. did a great job putting it all into words ..
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Old 6th July 2005, 00:35   #6
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@turbo: Thanks man. BTW, given a choice, I'd take the G35 anyday. The interiors are very important to me when buying a car. After all, that's where I'll be spending all my time and not on the outside .
I'd been thinking about the G35 when I traded in my old Lexus 2 months ago, but right now I could only afford one car and "the boss" didn't want anything but another Lexus. Well, maybe next year.
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