2024 Nissan Z Nismo: how different is it to a regular Z?

Nissan this week officially revealed the new Z Nismo, the more focused variant of the Z sports car.

The exterior gets all the usual Nismo styling cues, including Nismo-specific front bumper, rear bumper, side skirts and rear boot lid spoiler. Red accents, another Nismo signature, run along the lower edge of the front and rear fascia, as well as the side skirts.

The Nismo treatment isn’t just cosmetics, as it’s claimed to improved aerodynamic. The restyled front grille opening is shaped thinly to reduce drag while still permitting sufficient cooling air to the engine bay. Elsewhere, canards at the car’s front corners create vortexes over the front wheels for better aero.

At the rear, the rear bumper corners are shaped to aid with air separation, while the rear lid spoiler reduces turbulence air around the rear of the vehicle.

The Z Nismo boasts a dark metallic gray window line to complement its black roof and gloss black 19-inch RAYS wheels. A new ‘Stealth’ grey exterior colour is exclusive to the Z Nismo.

Inside, the two-seater cabin has been spiced up with an array of Nismo details. The engine start/stop and drive mode selection buttons are anodized red. The graphics in the fully digital TFT meter display feature a red outline around the tachometer, a Nismo logo and a special red “flash” during the start-up animation.

But the biggest differentiation are those special leather/Alcantara Recaro seats with a red centre section and Nismo logos in the headrests. A new steering wheel, also finished in leather and Alcantara, adds a further sporting touch with its racing-inspired red accent mark at the 12 o’clock position.

No true Nismo is complete without some sort of performance upgrade. The Z Nismo takes the 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 engine output to 313kW and 520Nm, an increase from the standard Z’s 298kW and 475Nm. The Nismo version also produces peak torque from 2000rpm through to 5200rpm.

The boost in engine performance is courtesy of improved cooling, revised electronic wastegate control providing increased turbocharger boost and turbine speed, and an independent ignition spark timing strategy similar to that used by the GT-R Nismo.

While the standard Z is available with the option of a 6-speed manual gearbox, the Z Nismo comes exclusively with a 9-speed torque converter automatic. Tuned for optimised lap times, the automatic transmission has quicker shift time than the regular Z auto, with launch control featured to deliver the fastest standing-start acceleration.

In addition to Normal and Sport, Z Nismo adds a new Sport+ drive mode. This delivers a more dynamic, racetrack-tuned shift program for circuit driving, taking advantage of the powertrain’s faster downshift capability. Nissan says the shift programming delivers such responsive shifts for performance driving that a driver does not need to use the shift paddles on track – though manual shifting via steering-mounted paddles is still available.

The Z Nismo has unique stabilizer bars, a stiffer spring rate and larger, retuned dampers. The overarching tuning ethos was to deliver accurate, “one-shot” steering that helps drivers to pick their line through a turn with minimal steering adjustment.

To deliver track-ready performance, the car is fitted with Dunlop SP Sport Maxx GT600 tyres, a version of which are also used on the GT-R. The rear tires are 10 mm wider than those on the standard Z – 285/35R19 versus 275/35R19.

The tyres are fitted to lightweight, Nismo-specific RAYS 19-inch wheels which are 0.5 inch wider than the 19-inch wheels on the standard car. The lighter forged Nismo wheels measure 10 inches wide front and 10.5 inches wide rear.

Sharper handling is also expected thanks to a stiffened chassis. Nismo enhancements include additional front, rear and rear underfloor bracing, helping increase torsional rigidity by 2.5% compared to the standard Z. Stiffer front and rear suspension bushings, and a stiffer mounting bushing for the steering rack, further increase lateral rigidity.

Finally, braking performance has also improved, with the front brakes employing larger, 15.0-inch rotors matched to 13.8-inch rear brake rotors. A more performance-focused brake pad compound further helps the Z Nismo shed speeds.

Z Nismo is confirmed to launch in Australia. Final Australian price and specification will be confirmed closer to local launch.

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