The 2024 Nissan Z Nismo is finally here, and it brings a colossal elephant into the room along with it. Despite upgrading nearly every aspect of the existing Z, Nissan has decided that the Nismo variant will only be offered with an automatic transmission. That’s right, the hopped-up Z won’t offer the manual transmission of the lesser Zs, but it will get a bit more power.

Nissan claims nearly every major system in the Z has been updated or upgraded for this new model. It has the same VR30DDTT 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 but with an extra 20 horsepower and 34 lb-ft of torque from retuned boost control and ignition timing. This means a total of 420 hp and 384 lb-ft.

Supporting the bump in power is an “enhanced” engine oil cooler as well as generally increased cooling from the wider grill of the new front fascia. Mercifully, the nine-speed automatic has been upgraded with new clutch packs for faster shifting with new control software allowing for 50% faster downshifts. 

Nissan

For most detractors of the Z’s mouth-agape styling, the Nismo will be an improvement. Instead of the rectangular grill of the standard Z, the Nismo adds some curvature to great effect citing inspiration from the S30 Z G-Nose. Along with new side skirts, a rear bumper, and a small rear spoiler, Nissan claims that the Z makes “positive downforce” and has no lift at track speeds.

Complimenting the new body are 19-inch Rays wheels and Dunlop tires, as well as swanky new Recaro reclinable bucket seats inside the Nismo. 

Nissan

Handling is improved with fully retuned suspension that includes new sway bars, upgraded dampers, and stiffer springs. The suspension bushings at both ends of the Nismo are stiffened as well, and a stiffer steering rack bushing should aid steering accuracy.

Supporting all of the extra stiffness are several body-reinforcing braces throughout the underfloor contributing to a 2.5% increase in body structure rigidity. The Z Nismo gains 102 pounds, coming in at 3,704 pounds compared to the 3,602-pound regular Z Performance with an automatic. Lastly, the front brakes are an inch bigger to increase thermal capacity and stopping power.

The Nismo Z is a real looker and promises track-ready performance, though the lack of a manual transmission will prove difficult to ignore by most enthusiasts. Pricing has yet to be announced, but if previous Nismo models are any indication, it won’t be cheap.

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