It's no secret that the Z is back and it's back with a vengeance. The aftermarket has gone off the deep end, offering parts that will transform the Nissan from any angle. This enthusiasm has also spilled over to the Infiniti badge as the G35 coupe (the Z's luxury oriented twin) has also been showered with performance possibilities.
Our Triple Threat threesome illustrates how easy it is to personalize the Z platform. We are covering all the bases here with a 350Z convertible, a 350Z hardtop and a G35 coupe representing in a big way. Each car has its own unique twist and each is executed with a high degree of quality and they are all feelin' the boost.
After checking out these fine specimens we have compiled some ground breaking Z-related tech. The first look at HKS' Rotrex supercharger kit, initially developed on a 350Z, and a Dyno Cell test of Stillen's hard-hitting Z exhaust system.
Vortech Supercharged 350Z RoadsterJason is flexin' a Vortech centrifugal supercharger and employing a little "squeeze" to his VQ35DE. The V6 is boosted by a glistening Vortech V5 blower. Evolution Autosports performed all the wrenching and added a custom touch to the forced induction system by employing a Spearco front-mount, air-to-air intercooler, custom piping and a TiAL blow-off valve. Jason's high boost button activates a 60-shot nitrous system from Nitrous Express.
With all the added air velocity going into the engine the crew at Evolution knew outgoing gasses had to be addressed. This was accomplished by dropping the stock exhaust system from the manifolds back and installing Borla headers, a Random Technology catalytic converter and an RS*R GT2 exhaust system. Removing the exhaust restrictions paid big dividends as the drop-top generated 349.63 whp and 297.21 lb-ft of torque with the V5 pumping out the prescribed 7 psi.
When it came to body tuning Jason went J-Spec, adding a Vizage four-piece fiberglass aero kit and a Seibon carbon fiber hood to his Z. He learned a lot about patience as shipping parts from Japan can take some time. He built the car to help promote his business, Total Look Inc., a paintless dent removal company, and readily admits he has gotten way carried away.
The footwork on Jason's Z consists of Eibach Pro Kit coils, 19-inch Volk Racing GT-C wheels and Dunlop rubber. This setup gives Jason 1.5 inches of drop and fat rubber tucked in the fender wells. Stopping power has been enhanced with GRex brakes from GReddy. The Nissan is running 14-inch rotors front and rear and big calipers up front.
Jason's Z is certainly tight; a killer combination of open-air cruising and forced-air bruising.
GReddy Turbocharged 350Z HardtopJordan's Z is the big gun of this triple threat trio. He is running a GReddy TD05H-18G twin-turbo kit that has been boosted up by Evolution Autosports. The Evolution crew set out to realize more of the kit's potential by setting boost at 8 psi and tweaking the fuel curve via the e-Manage unit. However, their efforts were thwarted by a failing spark plug. The turbos will soon again be building boost and we will run an update on this silky smooth Z in a future issue.
The Z runs a three-row GReddy intercooler, Type S blow-off valve and TiAL wastegates. On the hot side of the turbo we find a Random Technology high-flow cat and an Invidia GT2000 dual exhaust system. Jordan also has an emergency kick in the pants; a 60-hp wet manifold nitrous system from Nitrous Express.
The VQ35 is topped with a Crawford intake manifold that provides more plenum volume than the stock setup, which ensures even distribution of charge air to all six eager cylinders.
Jordan also added a set of Unorthodox Racing underdrive pulleys to free up more power by reducing the parasitic drag created by the larger and heavier OE accessory pulleys. Unorthodox was also the go-to player when it came to putting the boosted power to the ground. The Z runs an Unorthodox Ultra clutch and Unorthodox Ultra lightweight aluminum flywheel.
Ride height has been addressed with Espelir GT200 springs, which drop the Nissan 1.5 inches all the way around. Jordan says his 19-inch Enkei RPF-1 wheels are the first in the USA and he has gone big with them, running 8.5s up front and 10s out back. Nitto NT-555 high-performance tires provide the contact patch. Stopping the presses falls to an impressive Wilwood brake setup featuring huge 14-inch rotors at each corner and a total of 20 pistons. The front calipers sport six each side and the rear uses a more traditional four-piston caliper arrangement.
A C-West body kit helps maximize the aura of the rest of the mods going down on Jordan's sizzling silver beast. The most distinctive aspect of the C-West treatment is the front bumper. It is a departure from the original and does an outstanding job framing the aggressive front-mount intercooler. The kit was painted and installed by D&V Autobody in Chantilly, VA.
The look was further augmented with custom graphics from Competition Grafix of Manassas, VA. Of his 350, Jordan says, "think before you put pink flowers on your car." When you have a boosted Z, pushing 8 psi under the loud pedal, a few petals on the sheetmetal can be overlooked.
GReddy Turbocharged Infiniti G35 CoupeThis G-ride has been massaged in all the right places. Underhood we find a pair of Mitsubishi-based GReddy turbos supplying the boost. Max pressure is the kit's established 5.5 psi and tuning is provided by a GReddy e-Manage computer using the stock GReddy programming to control the kit's slightly larger 440cc injectors. Evolution Autosports says the VQ35 runs extremely rich but it is very reliable. On the dyno the G35 kicked out 325 whp, about the norm for an un-touched GReddy turbo kit.
Like Jason, J. Park enlisted the expertise of Evolution Autosports when it came to the installation of his hard parts. Mr. Park also noted that waiting for parts coming from Japan was a pain. The Infiniti is dressed in a Top Secret front bumper, Ing fenders and Impul side skits. Damon Drake Customs of Baltimore, Md., handled the installation and painting of the body armor.
As for rolling stock, the coupe rolls on 19-inch Nismo LM-GT4 aluminum wheels wrapped in Goodyear rubber. A set of HKS Hipermax LS coil-overs and Nismo sway bars counter the g-forces during cornering while 14-inch Stoptech brakes create the appropriate negative g-forces when the G35 needs to stop.
We have to give it up to J. Park; he is rolling in the quintessential combination of luxury and speed.