At the Detroit Auto Show in 2001, Nissan unveiled the long-awaited Z-car replacement: Concept Z. The stunning coupe was a show favorite, blend- ing modern styling with the iconic nameplate.More importantly, Nissan's CEO, Carlos Ghosn, announced that the car had been green lighted for production. In 2002, after a six-year hiatus from the U.S. market, the fifth-generation Z-car debuted wearing the 350Z badge.
With a sporty rear-drive platform, nearly 300 hp, and a $26,000 base price, the 350Z became an instant success. Underhood is the potent, six-cylinder VQ35DE powerplant. Numerous tuners have since experimented with the VQ and the engine's power threshold has continued to rise.
Due to the popularity of our December issue's Subaru WRX buyer's guide, we return to you this month with a little something for the Z33 owners out there. The following pages include a wide variety of products from today's elite performance manufacturers. From suspension to braking and everything in between, we have exactly what you need to turn your Z into a track-ready fiend.
Hotchkis Sport Suspension...
Hotchkis Sport Suspension
Stage 1 TVS kit
The Hotchkis Stage 1 Total Vehicle System (TVS) systematically improves handling performance on daily driven vehicles while offering a comfortable ride. Kits include Sport coil springs, Sport sway bars, and all necessary installation hardware.
The Progress Group Antiroll...
The Progress Group
Antiroll bar/lowering spring comboProgress has developed new front and rear antiroll bars and sport lowering springs for the all-new '03-'08 350Z. The antiroll bars are 33mm solid steel in the front and 22mm solid steel in the rear. Both of these sway bars have three holes of adjustably. The bars are designed for use with the OEM endlinks. This new antiroll bar system will improve steering response and minimize body roll while cornering. Combine the antiroll bar package with the all-new 350Z sport lowering springs and the rear-wheel-drive Nissan becomes an entirely new beast. The springs are cold wound, shot-peened, load tested, and include a lifetime warranty.
MSRP: $239 (springs), $189 (sway bar)
Tanabe Racing Development...
Tanabe Racing Development USA
Using an antisway bar is the quickest and best way to increase roll resistance without having to compromise ride quality by raising the spring rate on a suspension. Tanabe's unique antisway bars are fully constructed of chromoly steel and are lighter and stronger than common mild steel bars. This set is tuned for a neutral handling balance and is sure to please the corner carvers.
MSRP: $295 (front), $195 (rear)
Stillen Underbody chassis...
Underbody chassis brace, rear camber brace, lower control arm braceChassis flex is the enemy of good handling. These Stillen chassis braces help transform your `03-'08 350Z into a sure-footed slot car. They are great for serious road warriors or track use. Red powdercoated braces link rear suspension components together, minimizing cornering load induced flexing. Installation is bolt on, with no drilling or modifications required. The kit includes an underbody chassis brace, a rear camber brace, and a lower control arm brace. Pieces may be used independently, but for maximum effectiveness we recommend all three braces be used.
MSRP: Starting at $69
B&G Suspension Systems S2...
B&G Suspension Systems
S2 lowering springs
B&G Suspension Systems offers its S2 lowering springs for the '03 Nissan 350Z. The S2 springs lower the vehicle approximately 1 inch front/rear and feature a limited lifetime warranty.
Cobb Tuning Stage 2 suspension...
Stage 2 suspension system
The Cobb Tuning Stage 2 suspension package is its premiere suspension offering for your 350Z because it enhances the balance and turn-in response without comprising the overall ride quality. Combining its tailored front and rear sway bar kit with in-house designed sport springs gives the 350Z an aggressive stance with the performance to match, leaving little to be desired.