#TBT: Comparing the then-new 350Z against the original 240Z

By Scott Lear
Mar 7, 2024 | Datsun, Nissan | Posted in Product Reviews | From the May 2004 issue | Never miss an article

Flip on the TV these days and the odds are pretty good that you’re going to take a trip down memory lane with a show that encourages you to hearken back to the good old days.

The Speed Channel is rerunning NASCAR and F1 races from decades past, and automotive manufacturers have been getting lots of mileage out the word “retro” in …

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bangorgreg None
10/25/10 6:59 p.m.

Loved my 73 and wish that still had that red car!

reflexr GRM+ Memberand New Reader
2/17/11 11:05 a.m.

I had an Orange 73, it was a gem, injected 175 horse, 5 speed, 3.91 gears, urethane suspension(ahh the old P-S-T days), and KYBs. Loved it!

gearheartshirts Reader
7/27/11 10:17 a.m.

I'll be damned if this isn't perfect timing for this story to come up again... I just put a shirt like this on sale :) http://gearheadshirts.com/products/129225-z-car-generations-shirt

J.A. Ackley
J.A. Ackley Senior Editor
3/7/24 9:11 a.m.

I've driven the new Z, both on track and on the road. I haven't had the opportunity to drive the original. I'd be curious to see how those line up.

jerel77494 New Reader
3/7/24 10:50 a.m.

My perfect Z would be a 240/260 with LFX swap, street accommodating roll cage, a wheel & tire package that looks like it belongs on an IndyCar with wheelhouses from an AAGT IMSA Monza and a whale tail. I built a 1/24 scale model of it years ago and it was killer! Different motor though...

This on a 240Z body:

Datsun240ZGuy MegaDork
3/7/24 11:04 a.m.

In reply to jerel77494 :

Jim Cook Racing sold it - catalog upstairs - I'll see if they show the price.  

I think a lot of rusty rockers and wheel wells got bondo'd up and covered up to hide issues with the kit.  

Tom1200 PowerDork
3/7/24 11:35 a.m.

In reply to J.A. Ackley :

As a Datsun guy I will say you will most likely be disappointed.

An NA Miata will crush it in every way.

If you really like the crudeness of old cars like I do than you will probably like it. They are fun.......just not impressive in stock trim.

Tomwas1 New Reader
3/7/24 2:24 p.m.

Had 18 Nissan Datsun zcars, 17 s130s and z31 cars... #18 was a z33 roadster...  Nissan did a great job releasing a Z again back then.  Handled like a slot car, 287 hp kicked ass, even in the automatic trans car I had... Last s130 was a lovely 2+2 5sp.  Moved them all along... 

Geno1 New Reader
3/7/24 2:26 p.m.

Had 6 over the years.  None new.   All rescues, just like dogs.  Some lowered, some with Mikuni's, one with a 5-speed, all painted ladies.  Ran and handled top of the charts....for then.  Easy repair, easy tweak.  Never knew what 'if you live life to it's fullest you'll have your past to look forward to' meant.  At 79...I do now.

DavyZ New Reader
3/7/24 2:29 p.m.

Regarding the article, err, I should say Nissan's choice of styling for the "new" Z, it left so much to be desired. Not exciting, not alluring, not impressive.  It sucked (in my humble opinion), but that isn't to say the newer car did have redeeming qualities no, not at all.  The then new 350Z was a better built car with more technology, but I would hardly call it a worthy successor to the S30 chassis cars.  Going online you can find renderings of what a modern 240Z should have looked like:


Funny, but I am sure this kind of thing was available to Nissan back in the day, but whomever makes the decisions keeps loading, cocking, and firing into Nissan's foot. Their design selections have been so lack luster that it is painful.

The newest iteration of the Z are promising, but very few people are watching.  Eh, Nissan?


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