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2012 Nissan 370Z Performance

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On Performance
Since its introduction, the Nissan 370Z has been powered by a punchy 3.7-liter V-6 rated at 332 horsepower (350 horsepower in the NISMO version) with a 7,500-rpm redline. That continues for 2012, meaning 0-60 mph times of less than 5 seconds are still to be expected, with the NISMO coming in a tenth or two faster.

Also carrying forward is the unique SynchroRev manual transmission (on Sport package models), which uses the computer to seamlessly blip the throttle and rev-match downshifts. The feature can be disabled to allow the driver to have full control, of course, but it's a handy feature that takes some of the potential for error out of high-performance driving. A seven-speed automatic is also available, with paddle-shifters and auto-blipping downshifts in manual mode. Though neither transmission is a shortcoming for sporty work, the six-speed manual wins out in our book for its high-tech gadgetry. Fuel economy isn't wondrous in either guise, at about 18 mpg city and 26 mpg highway.

Being shorter, lighter, and wider than before, the 370Z is quite sporty despite its 3,200-pound curb weight. Handling is confident and predictable, if biased toward understeer and prone to tramlining. Steering is a bit dull, with little feedback at the limit. The NISMO takes all of these characters up a degree in sharpness, but may be too harsh a daily driver for many.

The 2012 Nissan 370Z Roadster and coupe are fast, fun, and still easy to live with. The NISMO version ups the performance ante, but at the cost of daily comfort.

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