Roadshow Video Reviews
2010 Nissan 370Z RoadsterA purposeful roadster that doesn't make you regret owning it.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:01 >> Nissan's new 370Z just hit in Coupe form. Now, The other shoe drops, the 370Z Roadster. Ragtops can be regrettable, but not this one. Let's check the tech. ^M00:00:14 [ Music ] ^M00:00:18 To my eye, the Coupe is a better-looking car. The Roadster comes off a little too zaftig, but functionally, it's almost exactly as competent on the road as the Coupe, which is always a tough trick when you saw the roof off a car. The top on a Z Roadster is nothing fancy. There's no retractable on this guy, metal panels, or anything like that. This is just a good old-fashioned, modern cloth top. Makes a bunch of nasty noises and does some herky-jerky moves on its way up or down but gets the job done. It just doesn't sound real good. Now, once you've settled down inside this cockpit, whether it's top open or top down, you got a nice look. This kind of harkens back to original Z layout. You've got the three gauges in the best, most retro look they've had since the original Z cars. Other than that, it's really good, sober materials in here. The closest thing to attractive instruments that Nissan does these days, which isn't saying a whole lot -- I mean, these two gauges here, speedo and tach look pretty good. This damn thing on the left is something like Fisher Price and Mattel got together, and both had a hangover. Now, our vehicle has, hidden right here, underneath this nicely tailored, latchable door, nothing. They didn't send us the car that has the nav head unit, and that's a let down, because when you get that option, ala carte by the way, you get rid of that little hole, and you put in a hard drive-based GPS nav system, touchscreen interface. Love to tell you how it looks, but never seen it. We have an aux jack here in the non-nav car, so that's good, but not a big deal. ^M00:01:53 [ Music ] ^M00:01:55 Now, our car does have what's called "the touring package with sporting equipment." That brings us this upgraded Bose head unit, and we do have Bluetooth hands-free, which the most base Z would not have. Audio is a mixed bag here to my ear. Satellite radio and 128 KMP3s -- hmm, no guts. CDs, however, you've got a six-disc changer in here, of course, and a good, strong local FM broadcast station, good low end. So it's hit and miss on the audio array. ^M00:02:25 [ Music ] ^M00:02:27 Current Z cars all sport the same corporate V6 in 3.7-liter form, putting out 332 horsepower, and 270 foot-pounds of torque to the rear wheels only. That's good for zero to 60 in about 5.2 second, while delivering a perfectly acceptable 18/25 MPG. Now, bless their little hearts over at Nissan, the base gearbox on a Z Roadster or Coupe is a six-speed manual with a really good, meaty feel to it. You'll know you're shifting gears in this thing. It's not some little, wimpy spring-loaded stick. It's a real old gearbox. Great clutch feel as well, some good spring resistance, and the engagement's nice and linear. Now, the controversial feature around this is this button right here, the "S" mode, which you might think is sport mode or something. But what, in fact, it is is a only-one-in-the-world synchro rev-matching manual. Hold that down for a couple seconds, get into the "S" mode, and now, as you're driving, it's gonna automatically match RPMs as you shift gears. This is great for the person who's not very good at driving a manual transmission. ^M00:03:30 [ Music ] ^M00:03:33 Now, there are two ways to open the trunk on a 370Z Roadster. The most logical and sensible of the two is to find a piece of strong, flat steel and pry that son of a [beep] open because the factory way is totally ignorant. Check this out. You reach down here above the license plate where road grime and dirt collect all the time, get your hand up there in the mud, and you'll find these rubbery things, a little round button and a rectangular thing -- button-type switch. The round one locks and unlocks the car without a key. Why the hell what I want to do that from back here? I don't know. Well, because unless the car is in the right unlock mode, you can't then use the rectangular rubber button next to it to open the trunk. It's like one of those things in "Mission Impossible" where you feel around behind the book to make the wall turn. What the hell are they thinking? ^M00:04:22 [ Music ] Now, drop down cars are often a balance of what kind of practicality you want. In this case, of course, we have no second row seats, just a two-seat car. But, as a result, that means that there is room for a trunk because the top folds down where the back seats would be. And this trunk is a pretty good size and space, compared, for example, to the Lexus ISC convertible, a four-seater with joke where the trunk would normally be. Here you can fit in a couple of bags and believe it or not, a set of golf club will go here. They even give you a little tutorial decal how to wedge them in there. It's kind of a trick, but it does work. ^M00:04:56 [ Music ] Okay, so you're Roadster Z -- yuck -- is gonna start about 37,700. Then you got to add 35 hundred to get this touring level, which is the much better audio, heated and cooled seats, a lot of other niceties, and then spend the 1850 on the nav with the hard drive, the jukebox, the A2DP streaming, the USB, and then hope for better weather than this. ^M00:05:19 [ Music ]