Here are six generations of Nissan's Z cars
With a new Zed on its way, which is your favourite from this list?
Announced way back in 1969, the first-gen Fairlady Z was hugely popular. Badged as a Datsun pretty much everywhere except Japan, the first cars were christened 240Z after their 2.4-litre inline six-cylinder engine. We also got a 260Z and eventually a 280Z, which had 2.6 and 2.8-litre engines respectively, before the second-gen car came along in 1978. Lovely looking thing, no?Advertisement - Page continues below
The S130-series Z-car was called the 280ZX. Though it kept the same 2.8-litre inline-six as the old 280Z, this was a very different car from its predecessor - bigger, heavier, softer, more of a grand-tourer than a sports car. Nothing like as pretty either, and until the Turbo version came along really quite slow. Though it proved popular, especially with Americans, this was not the Z's finest hour.
Launched in '83, the 300ZX ditched the inline-six in favour of Japan's first mass-produced V6. And while previous versions had been sold as Datsuns in some parts of the world, the Z31-era 300ZX was only ever a Nissan. As you can see it was especially... square (because Eighties) and, like its predecessor, more of a GT than a sports car. But that's what the people wanted - the 300ZX sold pretty well against the Supras, RX-7s and Starions of the day.Advertisement - Page continues below
The fourth-gen Z, the Z32, launched in 1989. It was a clever thing, with sophisticated suspension and rear-wheel steering, and hugely fast. The twin-turbo model would do 0-60mph in not much more than five seconds, which back in the Nineties was just outrageous. In Japan the Z32 300ZX would remain on sale until 2000, though exports stopped in 1996.
Renault and Nissan got together back in 1999, at which point the Z's resurrection was decided. In 2002 the Z33 arrived, packing a 3.5-litre DOHC V6 producing 287bhp and 274lb ft. The Great British public loved it - the initial allocation of 450 cars sold in under an hour - and so did we. The 350Z, as it was called, was a TG magazine award-winner back in 2004.
The 370Z arrived in 2008, and it's still with us today. While it feels its age - this is not a clever or cutting-edge car by any stretch of the imagination - it does have an old-school muscle car kind of charm. Pretty cheap too, at only around £30,000. What does Nissan have in store for us next? Click these blue words to find out.