Nissan 370Z Nismo Roadster Concept is a Ragtop Roustabout
The Nissan 370Z may be getting up there in age, but it’s still a rousing good time to drive, particularly in cock-of-the-walk Nismo form. But if you’re like us and live in a temperate climate, you’re probably peeved that while you can go to your local Nissan dealer and purchase a 370Z Roadster or a 370Z Nismo Coupe, you cannot get a 370Z Nismo Roadster. Boo, hiss and all that jazz.
However, if this 370Z Nismo Roadster Concept (currently on display at the Chicago Auto Show) is any indication, the current absence of hardcore soft-top action in Nissan’s lineup might soon be coming to an end. As you would expect, this roadster features all of the special Nismo bits that get applied to the coupe (sharpened suspension, 19” Rays wheels, Recaro bucket seats, and a specially-tuned 3.7L V6 rated at 350 horsepower rather than the usual 332), but with the folding fabric top so you can get more wind in your hair and more VQ-engine bark in your earholes.
What you won’t get (at least in the concept) is a clutch pedal; Nissan decided to fit this puppy with the 370Z family’s optional 7-speed automatic transmission, since the company says most 370Z Roadster buyers order the autobox. We would hope that the shift_ heads at Nissan will have the good sense to keep the 6-speed stick available in the eventual (Inevitable?) production version. If they don’t, well…that could open the door for a Pathfinder Nismo, and we’re pretty sure neither we nor you want to live in a world where that exists…