Nissan Leaf, 370Z will receive a Nismo makeover

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 2, 2011

Andy Palmer, Nissan's product planning chief, said that the two models expected to receive a Nismo makeover are the Nissan 370Z and Nissan Leaf. At the Tokyo Motor Show, Nissan announced that Nismo will have an active participation in the production of Nissan road cars that are more focused. As a preview, Nissan displayed concept versions of the Juke and Leaf. Palmer said that he has a long list of cars that he wants Nismo to do.

He cited the 370Z and the Leaf as among those on the top of the list but for various reasons. He believes that with Nismo’s efforts, the Leaf will weigh less and will be more powerful.

He said that it won’t be about a “horsepower race” and that instead, the focus would be on improving the vehicle’s ride and handling as well as making it look “drop dead gorgeous.”

This vehicle would have 10% more power and it will have new bodywork and significantly overhauled chassis settings. Palmer said that Nissan’s UK R&D base in Cranfield will accomplish European tuning of Nismo models.

When he was asked about a Nismo version of the GT-R, he said that the GT-R is already “the ultimate Nismo” and that the racing prowess of Nismo has always come with the sports car. Nismo models would be positioned at the top of a Nissan product range rather than the less remarkable GT or S versions.

Nissan 370Z Nismo delivers a jaw-dropping performance thanks to the Nissan Front Midship platform it uses, as well as the independent suspension and the 3.7-liter engine. The DOHC V6 engine features variable valve event and lift control and is expected to give you 350 hp of power at 7,400 rpm. It also gives you torque of around 276 lb-ft of torque at 5,200 revolutions per minute.

The VVEL system controls the opening and closing of the intake valves, ensuring that cooling air is promptly delivered to the engine at just the right time. The Nissan 370Z Nismo uses the H-configured muffler tuning and exhaust system design and better calibration of the Engine Control Module to deliver more power and acceleration.

There is only the six-speed manual transmission available for the 370Z Nismo. It features the SynchroRev Match system, which controls and adjusts the engine’s speed when shifting up. It blips out the throttle in order to eliminate any downshifts or up shifts. This way, the driver would only focus on steering and braking. It also gives you smoother gear shifts by lowering the shock when you step on the clutch. If you want to shift on your own, you can turn this mode off with just a button press.

Nissan 370Z Nismo has a taut and strong body that features two performance dampers and a strut tower bar brace. The dampers help reduce vibrations adding to the awesome performance and handling feel of the Nismo. It also uses the double-wishbone front four link and rear suspension setup that gives it better handling characteristics, more roll rigidity and higher stabilizer bar and spring rates, especially when contrasted against non-Nismo cars.

New 370Z Nismo further features 5-spoke gun metallic 19-inch forged aluminum-alloy wheels. These are mounted with the Bridgestone Potenza S001 tires. Meanwhile the Nismo Sports Brakes takes care of the braking using its front and rear vented rotors and two-piston back and four-piston front calipers, while also having the variable ratio brake pedal, and brake hoses.

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