2007 Nissan 350Z Roadster: reviews, specs, and photos
How Far Can You “Z”?
Nissan’s GT sports car lineage has a long history dating back almost four decades. In 1970 Nissan was known as Datsun and the first 240Z was introduced to the world. During the 80’s, the designers lost sight of the true “Z” sports car heritage. The 280Z series became slow and fat while trying to appeal to a sports car luxury market. Strict California emission requirements didn’t help the car’s performance, either. The next generation “Z” came in the form of the 300ZX (produced between 1990 and 1996). That particular generation has a loyal following and is coveted by many enthusiasts. After a six year hiatus Nissan introduced the 350Z and rocked the world again in 2003. The new design captured much of the youthful enthusiasm of the early generations and it became fun to drive a “Z” again. Does the Roadster version, with 306 HP, retain the same aggressive “chops” as the coupe model? Read on and we shall see.
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$ 37,165 (Enthusiast trim model)
Price As Tested
3.5-Liter, V6, 24-Valve, DOHC, SEFI Engine; Front/Longitudinal Mounted With Horsepower Of 306@6800, Torque Of 268@5200, Alloy Block and Alloy Cylinder Heads
306 @ 6800 RPM
268 @ 5200 RPM
5-speed automatic overdrive
Wheelbase / Length
104.3 in. / 169.8 in.
Pounds Per Horsepower
91-octane unleaded premium gasoline for best performance
FR: 225/45-18 , RR: 245/45-18
front power 320-mm vented disc and rear power 307-mm vented disc brakes, 4-wheel anti-lock brakes
8.1 inches (adjustable to 9.4 with air suspension)
EPA Fuel Economy - miles per gallon
city / highway / observed
19 / 25 / 14.8 mpg
Options and Charges
Carpeted floor mats
Alloy Kick Plate
Carpeted Trunk Mat
5-Speed Automatic Transmission
18” Chrome Wheels
Painted Splash Guards
Pros and Cons
Aggressive shape captures the eye and makes you want to follow its curves
Plenty of headroom for tall people even with the convertible top up
Steering wheel and center gauge display move together when raising and lowering
Tachometer is large, easy to read and located in the CENTER of the driver’s line of sight Excellent Japanese build quality
Nice accents with the silver and aluminum trim pieces in the cockpit
5-speed automatic transmission is slow to respond – even in manual mode
High waistline and low seats limits visibility.
Side view mirrors don’t offer much view area; driver must always be aware of the blind spots
Requires two hands to lock convertible top
Once I got beyond the thrill of driving an open top sports car, I began to settle into the car and learn the behavior of the 350Z on the open road. I spent four hours with Roadster in various driving conditions (slow traffic, fast commuter traffic on the freeway, surface street driving and a twisty/curvy route that included California’s scenic Highway 1 drive along the coastline.
When I was driving with the top up I noticed that the cabin can be on the noisy side. Lots of wind noise is apparent in the cabin while cruising at 50 MPH or faster. Thank goodness for the 7-speaker Bose audio system with subwoofer. Drowning out the wind noise was easy just by cranking up the tunes. Visibility around the car is alright with the top up. Although, the side view mirrors don’t offer much viewing area due to their small size. The side mirrors are very nicely sculpted, but check those blind spots carefully before changing lanes.
With the convertible top down I noticed the cabin picks up a lot of turbulence at 35 MPH or higher. The windshield behind the front seats could probably be a little taller if its purpose is to defeat the swirling winds inside the cabin. Hats are required unless you prefer the Oklahoma twister look.