2009 Nissan 350Z Review


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2009 Nissan 350Z Overview

The big news from Nissan regarding their 350Z for '09 is that this sporty speedster will be available only as a drop-top. Nissan has decided to discontinue the coupe for this model year and will, after a little tweaking, reintroduce the coupe as the Nissan 370Z later in 2008. Meanwhile, aficionados will have to content themselves with all the amenities of the 350Z without the hard top.

A 306-hp, 3.6-liter DOHC 24-valve V6 that puts out 268 lb-ft of torque is the standard - and only - powerplant for the 350Z. However, the 350Z offers two transmissions - a six-speed manual overdrive or a five-speed auto-manual - with each of the three trims. EPA mileage estimates with either transmission are 17/24 mpg.

For 2009, standard handling and convenience features for the base 350Z Enthusiast trim include independent multi-link front and rear suspension with a front strut lower bar and rear strut lower brace, 18-inch high performance tires, xenon headlights, cloth four-way power bucket seats, power locks and windows, heated power exterior mirrors, electric up-down soft top with a glass rear window, cruise control, a CD player with six speakers, remote keyless entry, speed sensitive rack and pinion steering, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with illuminated cruise controls, leather-wrapped shifter knob, HomeLink universal transceiver, and almost no trunk space.

The ’09 350Z Touring trim adds such standard features as heated leather front bucket seats, a Bose 6-disc CD changer with seven speakers and a subwoofer, and lockable storage behind the passenger seat. The Grand Touring 350Z trim features Nissan’s vehicle dynamic control system. Options for all trims include upgraded paint, chrome 18-inch wheels and an aluminum kick plate for the Enthusiast, and for the Touring and Grand touring trims, extra-cost paint and a DVD-based navigation system.

Nissan’s 2009 350Z roadster offers such standard safety features as four-wheel disc ABS, a traction control system (TCS), electronic brakeforce distribution, front seat side-mounted airbags, and the Nissan advanced airbag system. The Grand Touring also offers vehicle dynamic control (VDC) and Brembo brakes. The NHTSA gives the ’09 350Z four- and five-star ratings in front and side impact crash tests and a five-star rollover rating.

Owners of the 2008 find the 350Z to have an interior lacking true sports luxury features, and nearly all find the Bose sound system “abysmal.” The lack of both satellite radio and a telescoping steering wheel also disappointed some owners. Most, however, overlook these drawbacks and laud the 350Z’s power, performance, braking, styling, its quiet ride and, above all, its price.


Have Laptop. Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.

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