Track Tested! - 2009 Nissan 370Z Touring Long-Term Road Test

2009 Nissan 370Z Long-Term Road Test

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2009 Nissan 370Z Touring: Track Tested!

March 12, 2009


By now you've all read our 2010 Ford Mustang Vs. 2009 Nissan 370Z comparison test. At the end of the day, the newly refreshed Mustang (a darn good car) put up a strong fight but ultimately fell to the sharper, more focused, better looking (yes, better looking)--but less functional Z car.

Before that test was ever conceived, we subjected our Long-Term 370Z to the usual set of performance tests. Follow the jump for full results.

Vehicle: 2009 Nissan 370z Touring 6MT

Odometer: 995
Date: 02/03/09
Driver: Josh Jacquot

Price: $40,320

Drive Type: Rear Wheel Drive
Transmission Type: 6-speed manual

Engine Type: 60-degree V6

Displacement (cc / cu-in): 3,696cc (226 cu-in)

Redline (rpm): 7,500

horsepower (hp @ rpm): 332 @ 7000
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm): 270 @ 5200
Brake Type (front): 14.0-by-1.26-inch ventilated discs with fixed 4-piston calipers
Brake Type (rear): 13.8-by-0.79-inch ventilated disc with 2-piston calipers

Steering System: Speed-proportional power steering
Suspension Type (front): Double wishbone

Suspension Type (rear): Multilink
Tire Size (front): P245/40R19 94W
Tire Size (rear): P275/35R19 96W
Tire Brand: Bridgestone
Tire Model: Potenza RE050A
Tire Type: Summer
Wheel Size: 19-by-9 inches front -- 19-by-10 inches rear
Wheel Material (front/rear): Aluminum alloy
As tested Curb Weight (lb): 3,381

Test Results:
0 - 30 (sec): 2.1
0 - 45 (sec): 3.5
0 - 60 (sec): 5.3 (5.8 with traction control enabled)
0 - 75 (sec): 7.8
1/4 Mile (sec @ mph): 13.6 @ 103.2 (14.0 @ 101.0 with traction control enabled)
0-60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 5.1 (5.6 with traction control enabled)
30 - 0 (ft): 25
60 - 0 (ft): 105
Braking Rating: Very Good
Slalom (mph): 70.4 (67.1 with traction control enabled)
Skid Pad Lateral acceleration (g): 0.93 ( .89 with traction control enabled)
Handling Rating: Excellent
Db @ Idle: 49.2
Db @ Full Throttle: 82.7
Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 70.3

Acceleration Comments: 370 Z seems to like wheel spin off the line-- and it's required to keep from bogging engine. We found at least 5,000 rpm works best. Get the clutch out quick or it will sink. Tranny still resists fast shifts, especially 1-2.

Braking Comments: Very good distance and pedal feel, but scored rotors aren't good. See below for details.

Handling Comments: (Skid pad) Limits are high but understeer is heavy as they approach. Coaxing the Z into tail-out goodness isn't as easy as I'd like. (Slalom) Superb grip & predictability make the 370 reassuring in fast transitions. It's shorter wheelbase, however, makes it slightly more spin happy than I remember from the 350Z. Overall, however, I prefer the new nimbleness.

Let's take a minute to talk gauged brakes, shall we?

370z_brakes.jpg �

This is a picture of the front rotor of our Nissan 370z after brake testing. The car had 1,000 hard miles on it, but still, after the first two stops of 130+ feet, we knew that they were not bed-in enough for testing and began that process. The bedding-in process, according to our Engineering Editor Jay Kavanagh, "establishes a useful "transfer layer" of pad material onto the rotor, and should be done on any high-performance braking systems. It works like this--you perform several (ten or so) moderate stops in rapid succession, starting from ~60 mph to ~10 mph, then let them cool." The first stops we did combined with a shortened bed-in process resulted in some screaming hot (that's a technical term) pads which became abrasive and scored the rotors. Despite the looks, the pedal feels fine and the car came to a stop from 60 in only 105 feet.

Mike Magrath, Vehicle Testing Assistant

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