Really a 350Z?
I know, I know, that’s what I said too. But it all started during a 800 mile road trip to Detroit, Michigan. I was complaining about my 1994 Mazda Miata leaking (standard), and Will Byrd and Josh Taylor were telling me to buy a Nissan 350Z. And I was like really, 350Z? Isn’t that the worst of the Z cars? They took me to school over the next eight hours on why I should buy a 350Z, and it changed my whole perspective on the car. I didn’t realize that it is actually when of the best bargain cars from Japan that you buy right now. You can honestly buy one for the price of the first generation Mazda Miata. Shocked yet?
And here’s why I might buy a 350Z:
- No roll cage or roll bar required. That’s a plus one in my book.
- Great V6 engine. There is no replacement of displacement, and the 350Z comes with 287 horsepower and 274 lbs-ft of torque.
- It will smoke a Miata: zero to sixty mph in 5.4 seconds, 0.88 g on the skidpad, and stops from 70 mph in 164 feet.
- Won a Car and Driver 10 best Trophy in 2003.
- Easy to upgrade for track duty. You can fit 10-inch wide tires on a 350z, for a Miata you have the roll the fenders.
- Parts are cheap, replacement engines are easy to find and like the Miata you can break it and fix it for not much.
- It’s safer.
- It handles great, and I won’t get lapped on the track all day.
Do I really want to trade my Miata?
Well it’s a rear-wheel drive, V6, track-ready monster. What’s not to love? It has way more safety features then a first generation Miata ever will, and it’s cheap as hell. I’ve seen sub $5,000 Nissan 350z’s on Craigslist – that is a steal. I can track it for cheap, and my fiance might even approve. What do I do? Time will tell, but now to begin the search.
There’s still that driver variable element with point #8.