The famous 350Z vs. 370Z debate has been a hot topic among motoring enthusiasts and the Japanese Domestic Market community. And for good reason!
Potential buyers are spoiled with two fantastic options.
But choosing which of these two fantastic models is the better vehicle is a tough decision to make.
From the exterior alone, they look almost identical, but they are slightly different.
If you’re unsure about whether the Nissan 350z or 370z should be your dream car, we break down the stand-out features and the pros and cons of each to help you find the answer.
Inspired by the successful reception of the 1998 240Z concept model, Nissan Motors introduced its new Z concept and 5th generation of the Nissan Z series to the world, known as the 350Z.
The Nissan 350Z, also known as Nissan Fairlady Z in the Japanese market and Z33 among car enthusiasts, is a race-bred front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, two-seater sports car.
It features an all-aluminum engine with a 24-valve 3498cc V6 and variable valve timing.
Upon its release in 2002, the 350Z was an instant favorite, providing drivers with a true sports car feel at an affordable price.
It also became the car of choice for performance enthusiasts thanks to its VQ35DE V6 engine and near tuner-friendly chassis.
The design also boasted a new look to sports cars with its curved roof-line, long hood and neatly flared arches.
There was nothing quite like it available on the market at the time, and it quickly became an ideal choice for multiple demands, whether it was racing, drifting or simply a weekend car.
Fast forward to early 2009, Nissan released their sixth generation and the latest iteration in the historical line of Z cars, the 370Z.
Almost every piece and component of the 370Z has been redesigned from the previous 350Z.
The 370Z is smaller, lighter, faster and curvier than the 350Z.
Its wheelbase was reduced by 4 inches, the overall length was shortened by 2.7 inches, and the height was reduced by 0.3 inches.
The only increase was the width of the car by 1.3 inches.
The 370Z also features gadgets not found in the 350Z, such as a revised infotainment system, a premium interior finish, lower suspension, Bluetooth, push-button start, a six-speaker audio system and a more powerful VQ37HR engine.
Today, the 370Z also comes with optional automatic transmission.
Nissan 350Z vs 370Z: The Visuals
The 350Z and 370Z look the part as powerful and attractive sports cars.
Both have simplistic shapes full of curves and a great-looking fastback-style rear.
But while they look similar to each other, they do differ in their exterior.
Where the 350Z is simple and features a straight-edged design, the 370Z takes on a more modern look with a curvier and slightly smaller design.
While car designs have changed significantly over the years, the original design of the 350Z has aged well and is still highly celebrated.
With its iconic rear and tail lights, people love the unmistakable coupe silhouette.
Boasting a simpler design that’s timeless and never looks outdated, the 350Z takes the edge as the better-looking car of the two.
That said, the 370Z is still a stunning car to look at.
While both cars appear similar on the outside, it’s not until you get inside that you see some of the bigger changes.
Both the 350Z and 370Z have features that pay homage to the original 240Z, such as the triple gauge layout on the dashboard.
In addition, both have two low-mounted seats and a driver-facing cluster that give them a certain ‘race car’ like feel.
The 370Z beats out its predecessor only because of its modern features.
Once inside the 370Z, the newly remodeled interior gives you a more upscale and modern feel.
Nissan swapped out the plastic interior of the 350Z with a premium interior finish and softer materials.
This arguably helps give the 350 a wider appeal than the outdated interior of the 350Z.
Nissan 350Z vs 370Z: Which Performs Better?
If you’re a car enthusiast, then this is the key difference you want to know about.
Which car is faster and performs better?
While both the 350Z and 370Z claim the title as a high-performance sports vehicle with great speed, the latter is faster.
The top speed of the 350Z is 155mph (or 249kph) with a pumped-up 3.5-liter V6 VQ35DE engine.
Given its larger engine and capacity to produce more power, the 370Z is more powerful and gives 32 more horsepower and 10 lb-ft more torque.
For a more clear comparison, here’s the performance data of each car:
- Transmission: Six-speed manual transmission
- Horsepower: 300 @ 6400 RPM
- Torque: 260 lb-ft @ 4,800 RPM
- Curb Weight: 3,200 lbs
- 0-60: 5.1 Seconds
- 60-0: 112 Feet
- Quarter Mile Time: 13.5 Seconds
- Transmission: Six-speed manual or a seven-speed automatic transmission
- Horsepower: 332 @ 7,000 rpm
- Torque: 270 lb-ft @ 5,200 rpm
- Curb Weight: 3,300 lbs
- 0-60: 4.5 seconds
- 60-0: 105 feet
- Quarter Mile Time: 12.5 Seconds
Enthusiasts wanting to enjoy the heady mix of performance and the adrenaline rush have the answer: the 370Z.
Nissan 350Z vs 370Z: Long Term Reliability
If you were to ask multiple 350Z and 370Z owners about the reliability of their cars, you’d likely hear mixed opinions.
Good long-term reliability almost always depends on how well the owner maintains them.
Both the 350Z and 370Z are reliable sports cars, while the latter variant may be slightly more reliable given its more powerful engine.
Overall, whether you choose the 350Z or 370Z, if you treat it well, it will be reliable.
Nissan 350Z vs 370Z: Price Difference
If you’re on a tight budget, which car should you choose?
Given the additional features of the more modern 370Z, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that this is the more expensive sports car of the two.
The 350Z is less expensive and economically more feasible, with the price varying based on the model year.
For those interested in working on a project car, whether for racing or drag strips, the 350Z is the better option.
Because the 370Z offers fewer aftermarket parts, you’ll find it cheaper and easier to turn the 350Z into a track day car.
However, the 370Z is not as rare as its older sibling, so you’ll have more options to choose from – which is also a key factor if you’re looking to buy a used car.
Nissan 350Z vs 370Z: Which is Best for Daily Driving?
As a daily driver, there are a few important features to look out for: comfort, fuel efficiency, safety and reliability.
The car you choose needs to be as suitable for a long commute as it is in a traffic jam.
The best way to determine which is the better vehicle is to drive both and experience their performance.
Evidently, the 250Z is far less convenient to drive on a daily basis. With its outdated interior and more raw driving feel, you’ll not appreciate these too much on long commutes or in a traffic jam.
The 350Z is the ideal option for the daily driver. It offers a more refined simple driving experience that you’ll find comfortable and pleasant.
Conclusion: Which is the Better Car?
Deciding which of these two cars is better is not an easy decision.
Both the 350Z and 370Z are great sports cars that offer undiluted driving pleasure. It all boils down to what your needs and preferences are.
If you’re looking for a timeless, good-looking sports car that’s easy on your wallet, the 350Z is the car for you.
Keeping in mind the performance and styling, the 370Z is a more refined vehicle with more modern features, greater output and better gas mileage.
However, it comes with a heftier price tag.
Admittedly, despite the age gap and price, the two are very similar cars.
So whether you go for the 350Z or 370Z, you’ll own a wonderful car that’s sure to turn heads when you hit the road.