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Tuesday 2nd October 2012


OK, he doesn't really, but we get a hint of what Nissan might have in store

You don't need an especially sensitive setting on your PRometer to get the needle trembling at a contrived visit by Jay Leno to Nissan's design studio to talk about how a 21st century reinvention of the 240Z might look. With Nissan - sorry, Neeeee-sahn - looking forward to its forthcoming 80th anniversary a 'new' 240Z would be a nice birthday present. Getting Leno to speculate about how it might look with some over-familiar and occasionally cringeworthy banter with Nissan's design team isn't a bad way to start the ball rolling, and so it goes here.

'Design me a new 240Z in 10 minutes...'
'Design me a new 240Z in 10 minutes...'
To be fair, Leno's long perfected double-denimed, gen-u-ine car guy schtick just about carries it all off and the opportunity to share his drive in a mint, historic fleet 240Z is pretty nifty.

Though suitably appreciative of the opportunity it's not hard to fault his view that the earlier, unadorned white car is more attractive and, once he gets over the 'gee shucks' showbiz thing he gets a bit more hard-headed about what makes the Zee tick as a design. No sign of the Black Gold version of the later 280 we enjoyed as a Time For Tea? a little while back on the design wall though. Shame!

Is Nissan really working on a new-age Zee though? And if it is would it be something more potent or simply a replacement for the current 370? With the GT-R doing its supercar troubling thing and the Z's heritage as a more everyday, affordable sports car you'd have to hope for the latter but it looks like we'll find out in 2014...

Watch Leno's visit here:


Author: Dan Trent