EXPERIENCE With Nissan’s sporty 370Z all ready to hit the Indian roads, NARAYANAN S. test drives it to see how it works.
Nissan’s sports model — Nissan 370Z, codenamed C53D, was developed from its ancestor the Nissan 350Z. It’s has not only got the same shape, but it also somes with some mind-blowing upgrades. After the launch of the Nissan 370Z, NXg was invited by Team Nissan to test drive it, as well as suggest changes that can be implemented keeping Indian road conditions in mind.
For a market like India where people are always looking forward to what’s next in store be it in terms of luxury or performance and power, 350Z seems to have opened an option for them. This sports model can give the other competing brands and models a run for their money. Packed with a dashing look it can woo anyone who is looking for the speed DNA and for those who want to add it to their list of cars to drive in. It’s going to drive many crazy and few will be able to resist their temptation to drive this beauty.On the outside the car seems to be aerodynamically created with an aggressive look, that makes the other cars feel low on road. Yet, the interior is in contrast to the exterior; it is aggressive but makes you feel calm and safe. The interior, seating positions and access to controls, are ergonomic and easy to use.
Under the hood
This car is powered by a massive 3.7 litre Nissan VQ series power mill offering a mind-blowing 337PS torque. Together with this engine, it comes mated with a seven-speed automatic transmission or a six-speed manual transmission. This is expected to make it clock a speed of 0-100 kmph in less than six seconds and it marks a tops speed of 260kmph.
You can open the car with the key in your pocket, though this does not mean anything for a class of vehicle at this level, it does seem amazing. The interior is welcoming and done up with a full leather finish. The seats are electronically adjustable and make way for a comfortable drive.The dashboard has a three cluster console — one for the fuel, temperature and warnings, another console holding the tachometer and gear indication, and finally one for the speedometer and odometer.
Now coming to the centre console, we have the time console, the battery meter and the temperature console in numerical reading. Just below is the storage space and below that is the integrated music system, to the right side of the music system is the ignition button and finally aligned are the air conditioning controls. The centre console further proceeds to form the place for the gear knob and a small storage space. There are a/c vents all round the dashboard and there are hardly any consoles or spaces at the co-driver’s end except for the airbags.The steering zone consists of an amazing cluster of controls — the paddle shift gears, then the cruise controls and the general controls like the wiper and lamp controls.The integrated music system with Bose sound systems makes this car more valuable; along with a subwoofer at the rear, it’s sure to grab a lot of attention.
Hold the brake pedal down and press the ignition start button, feel the engine start and tune your ears to hear that sweet sound of the exhaust. Press the gear knob and move it to the drive mode and release the brakes and feel the car move, a little bit of gas and you will feel the car starting to kiss the road as it picks up the power to zoom ahead.On the test drive, we were able to test its capability of reaching the 0-100kmph and it did perfectly so in slightly more than five seconds on the automatic transmission mode. Driving it on a stretch of 10-km road, we were able to achieve the car’s top speed of 240 kmph and we almost touched the 260 kmph mark.
The rigid suspension gives a lot of feedback from the road terrain and even the slight unevenness of the road is felt inside. A pretty amazing drive but feels disturbing when jumping around in the cockpit because of unevenness on the road. The car handles well and gives the driver no reason to slow the car down when negotiating a turn or cornering. The steering had no or very less feedback and felt more like playing a video game. The best part of the whole drive was to see how soon the car could stop, and we managed to see that it was able to slow down and come to a halt from about 180kmph-190kmph in less than 150 mts taking less than three seconds.When the car was driven on manual transmission mode, we were able to achieve almost the same kind of speeds and control effects; rather the top speed was only 220 kmph. But otherwise, the car when driven in manual mode is more fun and gives the driver the actual feel of driving the car with instant power rush as per his requirement.
Nissan 370Z is capable of delivering top power on demand. But the rigid suspensions when changed for the Indian roads can actually help in giving one a better driving experience. However, the slight jumping and vibes inside could pose a problem to a few.If you are looking at mileage, about 5 kmpl isn’t much but the car definitely gives you more reasons to be happier.
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