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“Personal transport” will be the dominant theme for car purchases during the pandemic. While this usually means a small, economical hatchback, there’s no reason why an enthusiast can’t designate a sports car as their choice of personal transport, honest justification be damned. Few sports cars have as rich a heritage as Nissan’s Z sports car, as the model is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

Originally meant to debut at the now-rescheduled Manila International Auto Show, Nissan has launched an updated version of the Z car as its halo vehicle. The latest iteration of the 370Z (aka Fairlady Z) sports the VQ 3.7-liter DOHC 24-valve V6 that drives the rear wheels. Output is an 332ps and 363 Nm.

The engine is paired with either a 6-speed manual or a 7-speed automatic transmission. The manual gearbox features the world’s first SynchroRev matching system. The computerized system matches engine speed during up and downshifts by blipping the throtte. Matching the revs allows for smoother shifts and improves handling, as well. It’s a skill that experienced drivers—usually racers—learn with much experience. For the 370Z, it’s all done automatically, no heel-and-toe needed.

Speaking of automatics, the seven-speed auto also has downshift rev matching. The 7-speed can be actuated via magnesium paddle shifters. The 370Z features Nissan Sport brakes, limited-slip differential, carbon-fiber composite driveshaft, and sport-tuned shock absorbers.

The 370Z is instantly recognizable thanks to its slow-slung silhoutte that hints at its low center of gravity, and short wheelbase designed for quicker handling response. HID projector headlamps pair with LED daytime running lights. The 370Z rides on 19-inch Rays forged alloy wheels, and it’s equipped with dual exhaust pipes and rear spoiler.

Inside, the 370Z features an eight-speaker Bose sound system, four-way power adjustable sport seats, triple analog meter cluster, sport pedals, and pushbutton start-stop system.

If you want a sportier flavor, Nissan Philippines is offering the 370Z Nismo (aka Nissan Motorsport). More exclusive than the standard Z, the 370Z Nismo features redesigned front and rear bumpers, side sills, rear spoiler and door mirrors. The new parts make the Nismo variant look more aggressive on road and track and generate additional downforce, too. The 370Z Nismo gets its own exclusive 19-inch Rays forged wheels with twin-five spoke design rendered in charcoal gray machine finish. Interior touches include Recaro sport seats, steering wheel trimmed in leather and Alcantara, NISMO red tachometer and various NISMO badges.

Power is upgraded to 344ps and 371Nm, thanks to the upgraded Nismo dual exhaust system. The Nismo variant is available with the 7-speed automatic equipped with black magnesium paddle shifters. For improved handling and body rigidity, Nissan has installed Nismo strut tower brace and performance dampers.

“Nissan has a proven heritage of producing some of the most iconic sports cars in the world, and we’re very excited to celebrate this legacy with the Nissan 370Z. The Nissan 370Z has brought great innovation to the sports car segment, showcasing the perfect combination of practicality and performance,” says Atsushi Najima, Nissan in the Philippines President & Managing Director. “We are very happy to turn the ‘sports car dream’ into a reality for Filipinos everywhere this April, as we introduce the Nissan 370Z into the market. We are looking forward to sharing this with Filipinos craving for a new and thrilling driving experience.”

The Nissan 370Z Premium is available in:

6-speed manual transmission P 2,779,000.00 and

7-speed automatic transmission P 2,879,000.00,

at select dealerships nationwide.

The Nissan 370Z Nismo, priced at P 3,888,000, is available at the Nissan High Performance Center on Quezon Avenue.