Hiroshi Tamura, a man not given to hyperbole, has big goals for the next Nissan Z. And since his title as chief product specialist for the carmaker’s iconic coupe means it’s his job to lead the car’s development and to maintain its essential “Z-ness”. it will be good if we listen to what he says. In a new interview published by Nissan last week, Tamura was clear about his vision and mission: “I want people to drive the next Z and feel like they’ve discovered a new dance partner.”
Nissan’s sports car spirit has been life-supporting for a while. The current Nissan Z, even the NISMO version, looks old enough to qualify for AARP membership. And it’s been a long time coming between the beloved Nissan 300ZX, introduced in 1990, and the first version of the current model, the 350Z. And that car has never really said ‘Z’ to any of us owning an original 1970s 240Z model.
This one does it, and it should, Tamura said in the interview that Nissan released. As owners of two vintage Zs, they have the right man for the job. He has been working at Nissan since 1984, and to think he is now in charge of helping shape the new car, predicted by the Nissan Z Proto concept (which honestly looks for the showroom), is a dream come true. ‘In April 2012, he became the chief product strategist of the GT-R and the 370Z.
“I was a Nissan petrolhead from a young age. I was a fan of two main cars in my youth – the GT-R and the Z – and then I wanted to be part of the future of Nissan and its sports cars. I remember the GT-R’s power and racing performance, and I remember the beautiful appearance of the Fairlady Z [the precursor to the 240Z]; these cars changed my life.
‘My intention with the Z has always been to strike a balance between style, power and technology, which is easily accessible by the customer. The Z must move to the right, look to the right, ”he said.
The interview reflects on the importance of Z for Nissan, but it does not contribute much to the concrete details. We found that the Z Proto has a twin-turbo V-6 and a six-speed manual transmission (yes, manual transmission!) Or automatic transmission. It is 172.5 inches long (more than five inches longer than the current Z), 72.8 inches wide and has 19-inch tires and wheels.
For more than that we have to wait. It will be worth it, Tamura said. ‘It helps that I’ve loved Z cars from the beginning, and I’ve owned it over the years. I know what the Z means to me, so I know what it means to the customer. ”
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