Today doors opened at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show. There’s lots to see from just about every Japanese automaker, but the first car to catch our eye is the Nissan 370Z NISMO Roadster Concept, seen below:
Nissan says that this 370Z NISMO Roadster Concept is a one-off concept study to gauge interest in a NISMO roadster. But we’re calling their bluff – this car looks way too close to production to be a “study”. This is just a coy marketing tactic from Nissan to get everyone psyched up for their new car.
Either way, the 370Z NISMO Roadster is so good looking that we don’t mind the ploy… Whatever it takes to get this thing on the road. As you can see, this is pretty much a topless 370Z NISMO coupe. It’s got that classic NISMO front fascia with blood red front spoilers and an aggressively styled grille. We love the LED running lights and red accented side sills too. And you can’t help but admire those sleek lightweight 19-inch alloys.
From the back, Nissan’s added a sizeable carbon fiber spoiler to keep those super lightweight alloys on the road. The rear bumper boasts slim side vents and more of the red NISMO accent above each of the chrome exhausts.
Under the hood, Nissan’s sport-tuning firm has installed the same 3.7L V6 engine that’s in the normal 370Z roadster. However, they’ve upped the output to a full 350 horsepower and 276 lb-ft of torque. They’ve also paired it with their 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, which they say is the most popular option in the normal 370Z roadster. In fact, Nissan says that so many of their roadster drivers prefer the automatic that it wouldn’t make sense to offer a manual transmission, but we’ll have to wait and see what’s in the production model.
Either way, you’ll find a couple other goodies under the hood, including a NISMO-brand tower strut, performance-tuned springs and stabilizers in the suspension, and extra-large sport brakes to help handle the car’s massive acceleration. A limited-slip differential also helps improve on-road performance.
Finally, moving inside the 370Z NISMO Roadster Concept you’ll find a couple of black Recaro leather bucket seats with red accent stitching and white Ultrasuede inserts. The driver gets a three-spoke Alcantara and leather-wrapped steering wheel complete with wheel-mounted paddle shifters, and both driver and passenger will enjoy the luxurious infotainment system with a vivid 7-inch touchscreen.
In the end, Nissan, we’re happy to play your little game. We’re saying it loud and proud – give us a Nissan 370Z NISMO Roadster! We want it, and so does everyone else!