Nissan has turned a 370Z into a snowmobileTwo-seat V6 drop-top swaps wheels for tracks and hits the slopes
A few years ago, you may remember that Nissan had the natty idea of replacing the Juke Nismo RS’s wheels with tank tracks. It was of course, a one-off PR stunt rather than an official options-list box to tick. Dubbed the ‘RSnow’, it was a cool idea – especially when we took it to a frozen ice lake in Sweden. But with the Chicago auto show just around the corner, Nissan needs another stunt. This time to inject some energy and excitement into its ageing 370Z; an automotive dinosaur that refuses to die. So what have they done? Put a set of tracks on it of course. How original.
Dubbed the 370Zki (which we’re handily informed is pronounced ‘370 ski’), it’s an automatic 330bhp 370Z that’s been handed over to the American Track Truck company for some four-foot long, 15-inch wide tracks at the back and skis at the front.
To make them fit, a custom lift kit had to be added to give the Z an extra three inches of clearance, new rear suspension mounts and three-inch spacers to make sure the tracks didn’t fall off the hubs. At the front, the suspension is fabricated to allow for the skis to move freely. But to make sure that the 3.8-litre V6 wasn’t penetrated by a block of ice at the sight of the first snowbank, a skid plate was fitted and the exhaust was rerouted. Then the aesthetics department got to work, adding headlight tints and an orange wrap.
As cool as it is – trust us, we wouldn’t turn down an opportunity to drive a 370 Snowmobile – isn’t it time Nissan just sat down and put its money and brains together to come up with a new Z car? C’mon, Nissan. Give the people what they want; a big-engined, two-seat, rear-wheel-drive sports car.