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Old 20th January 2010, 16:38   #1
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Default Report & Pics: Nissan 370Z launch in Mumbai + display in various cities

There was a time when we would see a 350Z on Indian roads and get clicking with our cameras. Well now its successor will be sold at our local Nissan dealership. Nissan today launched the 370Z sports car in Mumbai at a mega event at the Pawan Hans Flying Club at Juhu in Mumbai. Its the first time that an event such as this has taken place at the Flying Club. We were asked to park our cars at the entrance on arrival and were then taken by a waiting bus to one of the hangars where the launch was to take place.

On arriving at the hangar, we saw two open roof double decker BEST buses adorned with the NISSAN logo. After a tea session, the entire media was asked to board the BESTs for the launch.

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Waiting nearby was a closed trailer with a larger than life picture of the car on the outsides

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The buses started to move on the runway, one on each side, while the trailer went ahead in between the two busses.

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The trailer opened and out came a gleaming red 370z.

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With the trailer and busses still driving forward, the 370Z rolled off onto the airstrip.

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It didnt stop there. The car did a few high speed runs on the straights, a few doughnuts and then what it does best.. DRIFTING !!! The car finally came to a standstill and out popped non other than Narain Karthikeyan, our very own F1 & A1 GP Driver. Here he is posing with the car.

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And pics of Narain in action

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We then got back to the hangar for the official launch and press conference. We asked a couple of questions to Mr. Kiminobu Tokuyama the MD of Nissan India, Mr. Niki Desai the Senior Manager of Nissan India and Mr. Abhijit Pandit, the VP Operations at Hover Automotive India. Nissan is considering the launch of another sports car soon. I asked if it was the GTR and he happily chose to avoid the answer by saying they are studying the Indian market for their next sports car

We also asked them what sales targets they were looking at. They said that they are looking to sell around 2-4 units per month, since this is obviously not a segment with high volumes of sale.

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The 'Z' sportscar from Nissan has been in production since 40 years with the first car seeing the light of day in 1969. The 370Z is the 6th generation Z sports car. (aka the Fairlady Z in Japan)

Highlights and features of the Nissan 370Z:
  • Shorter wheelbase than its predecessor: 2550 mm as opposed to 2650 on the 350Z
  • 100 kgs lighter than the 350Z
  • Light aluminum body
  • 3696cc V6 engine 332 BHP @ 7000rpm, torque 363NM @ 5200 RPM
  • 6 Speed manual with SynchroRev technology
  • 7 speed automatic with paddle shift
  • Bi-Xenon headlamps
  • Rear LED taillights
  • 6 airbags, ABS, EBD. Active head restraints.
  • Push button start
  • 235 litres of boot space
  • 19" RAYZ alloys
  • BOSE audio system
  • Meters can be tilted along with the steering wheel
  • 8 body colours including a special Metal Quartz shade to celebrate the Z's 40th Anniversary.

Prices for the 370Z Ex-showroom Delhi:

MT: 53.50 lakhs
AT: 54.50 lakhs


We chatted with Narain post launch and asked him what he liked about the car. He said it was more fun to drive than the earlier car, and that the chassis dynamics are way better in the 370. He also said this was more fun to drift.

We managed to go out with Narain for a couple of hot laps. Rehaan should be posting the update on that. The drifting was wild to say the least.

Last edited by Rehaan : 22nd January 2010 at 12:06. Reason: Making a clarification, as per request.
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Old 20th January 2010, 17:23   #2
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Most people, even quite a few petrolheads have a hard time seeing what exactly is "new" in the 370z (viz-a-viz the 350z).

Well, the key changes are :
- 3.7L V6 vs the older 3.5L
- 4" shorter wheelbase
- Lighter overall (thanks to the wheelbase and aluminum hood, doors and boot lid)
- 1-2" Wider track at the rear
- In the 350z the rear strut brace blocked a lot of luggage space - thats been fixed
- Complaints of a dull interior on the 350z have also been addressed with the 370z being more upmarket on the inside


Now, whats great about this?
Typically newer versions of cars have been getting bigger and bigger these days. (The huge GTR is a testament to that).
With the 370z - Nissan has actually SHRUNK the car! Better handling, more power, less weight. A noticable step ahead of the 350z, atleast on the dynamics side of things.


Visually, whats different?
The headlights are probably the clearest visual difference. Notice the "predatory" styling of the boomerang shaped headlights, with the body's side panel making a little notch in the headlamp :
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The same styling carries over to the rear :
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Second, look at the A-pillar and roofline. Notice anything familiar? Its totally following the big-brother GTR's profile. Much more angular and sharp than the earlier 350z.
(On the other hand, the slight rise of the window-sill at the rear is reminiscent of the old 240z)
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One more gene shared with the GTR - the front airdam :
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A few misc pics :

Z logo is also a side indicator :
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Underbody :
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These are the 18" alloys shown. We are NOT getting this design. We will be getting the 19" forged wheels from RAYZ (nice!)
(w/ 245mm on the front and 275mm on the rear)
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Note :
On the Indian MT offering, we've got what is termed as the "Sport package" in USA and other countries :
- 19" forged wheels (vs 18")
- SynchroRev Match gearbox (It blips the throttle automatically when you downshift on the manual `box)
- 4-piston calipers at the front and 2-piston at the rear (larger discs too if i am not mistaken)
- Tonneau cover
- Bose audio system

Last edited by Rehaan : 20th January 2010 at 19:04.
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Old 20th January 2010, 17:31   #3
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A few interior details :

Dials that move up and down with the steering.
Paddle-shifts as well.
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Steering mounted controls.
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3 smaller dials mounted in the center of the dash for that "sporty" look.
Clock, Voltmeter, Coolant temp
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Interesting design for a door handle + AC vent
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Whew! Thank god Nissan decided to offer the Bose system, and not the old-school looking system currently featured on the X-Trail.
(Notice the Engine Start button on the right)
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Seat adjustment in an interesting position. I prefer it to having to blindly hunt around on the side of the seat.
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Nicely shaped seats. Fairly low seating position. Yep - the car we were driven around in was the 7-speed A/T.
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Storage space behind the drivers seat.
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Coming soon....out on the airstrip with NK & kahani mein twist

Last edited by Rehaan : 20th January 2010 at 19:00.
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Old 20th January 2010, 17:31   #4
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Okay - Now for a little more about the event and the fun on the track.

One of the first thing i notice when we reach the location is some telltale signs that something interesting had happened here recently.
Tracks...looking to be of the RWD goina sidewaesous species. Rarely spotted - as this species is not commonly found in our country, but due to concerted efforts hopefully their numbers will rise.

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Another thing. Pawan Hans? Car event ?
Thats almost a fairytale for anyone from Mumbai. The last time this (barely-used) airstrip was used for something automotive was back before most people knew what e-mail was.

The fact that Nissan managed to get permission to use a section of the smaller runway in itself is something worth celebrating for the Mumbai motorsports fans.

Okay, the surface wasn't exactly great - but its still a better location than a 5-star hotel conference room IMO!

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Thanks to Dippy's post, you guys know the next part of the story.
Heres a pic of the (moving) truck that the stunt driver rolled the car off from. Notice the wheels, (and there is also a 2nd slide-out that makes the ramp more gradual).

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The stunt driver then handed the car over to NK
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Who wowed the media...
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Did some slides...
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A nice display of man and machine. And smoke.

---------------------

After the press conference Dippy and i got chatting with NK. Asked him what he thought about the car. "A huge improvement over the 350z. Great for drifting." is what he said. (His uncle, the Late Karivardhan (Kari) used to own a 280zx since NK's childhood - so he has a thing for Nissan sports cars). Two more comments from him were that the lack of a lockable diff made it hard to sustain a drift for a long time, and that the auto gearbox was responsive, and especially quick when upshifting.

NK offers to take us out for a hot-lap.

We say YES!

I strap a camera onto the car so we can share some of the drifting action with you guys on Team-BHP
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Jump in the passengers seat, belt up - and we're off!
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Kahani mein twist


EEEK! Whats that noise?
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Theres a tapping/whacking sound coming from the rear. Tck-tck-tck. Changing with the speed.

Stop the car. Lets take a look.

Those ADVANs don't look so good! There is a chunk of tread missing.....

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....and there is another long piece hanging on for dear life and making that racket.
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Yesterdays playing, practising and video making has definitely taken a toll on the tyres.

We crawl back to the main event area.


Even though Nissan did cover their bases by bringing and extra set of tyres - they were not mounted on rims, and there was no tyre changer in sight.

The tech team takes a look at the car - and it comes back with obvious instructions to take things easy (aka no drifting).


Dippy gets in this time
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(Everyone seems to be looking at something really interesting ?)


They reverse out and go for a fairly spirited run down the strip.
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I get the chance to go once again. A quick acceleration burst down 1/8th+ of a mile and then a bit of a power drift to turn around at the end, with another blast back to basecamp. "Taking things easy", but definitely still worth it!


Here's a short video of the run :


Last edited by Rehaan : 1st November 2011 at 16:59. Reason: Video added
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Old 20th January 2010, 17:48   #5
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Holy smokes! I drooled. As a matter of fact, I'm still drooling! These alloys remind me of the Camaro alloys. Correct me if I am wrong. Isn't the price on the higher side though?

Awesome car. Sweet report! Thanks for covering this guys!
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Old 20th January 2010, 17:56   #6
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Wow !!! What a Launch man. The Red car looks stunning. But one can`t really make our weather its a 350 or a 370. At a first glance only the headlamp cluster looks different. Anywayz It must be fun watching narain do the tricks.
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Old 20th January 2010, 18:05   #7
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Finally, the "semi-affordable" sports cars start rolling in!
SWEET!
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Old 20th January 2010, 18:06   #8
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Absolutely, beautiful.

Honestly, I think Nissan should have been a little more aggressive in their pricing strategy, even though this is a niche segment in India.

Do you have any video of the 370 from the track, especially the drifts and doughnuts?

Cheers,
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Old 20th January 2010, 18:12   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abbas View Post
Wow !!! What a Launch man. The Red car looks stunning. But one can`t really make our weather its a 350 or a 370. At a first glance only the headlamp cluster looks different. Anywayz It must be fun watching narain do the tricks.
You can easily spot GTR genes if you look closely. The air-dam, the A-pillar etc.
To a layman, it is a 350Z with eyelids. And those are probably the 350Z alloys too.

Oh btw, I forgot to ask. Will we be getting these alloys?
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Old 20th January 2010, 18:20   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ardy View Post
Honestly, I think Nissan should have been a little more aggressive in their pricing strategy, even though this is a niche segment in India.
Before announcing the price they said that they "paid close attention to price positioning".

Also, keep in mind - Nissans move to launch this car is also to "establish the brand as desireable".


The Boxster is the nearest neighbor IMO, and one thing it does have which the Z doesn't is the "Porsche" stamp.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ardy View Post
Do you have any video of the 370 from the track, especially the drifts and doughnuts?
Coming up by tomorrow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cartman View Post
Oh btw, I forgot to ask. Will we be getting these alloys?
The car they had on the track was one that was brought in months back -- before they decided the exact level of kit that they were going to sell here. Therefore, a few things will be different (better, from the sounds of it).

And yes, as mentioned in my post, those are the 19" forged wheels "we" should be getting

cya
R

Last edited by Rehaan : 20th January 2010 at 18:26.
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Old 20th January 2010, 19:05   #11
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Dippy & Rehaan, great coverage of the launch!

The launch itself sounds really different to the usual stuff and no better place to show off a sports car than on long tarmac And you guys got to ride with Karthikeyan too, awesome!

The 370Z looks hot in red, although as far as exterior design goes, I still like the curvier 350Z - but i'm not in the market for either.

I guess the manual version will be the more popular one and not just for the Rs. 1L saving.

Looking forward to the video.
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Old 20th January 2010, 19:28   #12
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Strange, i when enquired about 350z from a dealer ofcourse, the price i was told was 40 Lakhs, later my friend bought it for 38.
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Old 20th January 2010, 19:49   #13
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Absolutely beautiful. Smokedout gauges, A unique door handle etc,. Great move by nissan but aren't the price tags a bit high?
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Old 20th January 2010, 20:27   #14
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Great and an different launch by Nissan.
Dippy and Rehaan had done a good job in covering the launch.I am waiting for the video and more on the drive with NK.

Did Nk drove specially for Rehaan based on his request or it was for selected people.
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Old 20th January 2010, 20:35   #15
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Retarded pricing. Internationally this car is significantly cheaper (5-6000 pounds) than the BMW Z4. In India, the pricing is almost the same.

At 50 odd ex showroom, I'll quickly give it a pass. It should have been priced at 40lac.
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