Hang On, a Hybrid Nissan 370Z?
In a new report in one of Japan's largest automotive outlets, Best Car, quotes an inside source at Nissan who says that a hybrid powertrain is being considered for the next-generation Z car, the replacement for the 370Z. This car, expected to be unveiled sometime next year, could sport turbocharged four-cylinder engines and a new hybrid option using a Mercedes-Benz engine and Nissan's hybrid know-how.
This is a bit of a shock, but considering that the well-established rumor for the GT-R supercar is that it will sport a hybrid in its next-generation, it's not so far fetched. BMW, after all, has the awesome i8 hybrid and Porsche has the 918 Spyder. Why not Nissan and why not in the Z?
The Best Car source, translating to English, indicates that the turbocharged four-cylinder engine could come from Mercedes-Benz. This seems a bit far-fetched, given the number of great engines Nissan already has, and the fact that the new Z is expected to be more affordable than the current - something which outsourcing the engine would likely change. Merc has a 2.0-liter turbo four that is very impressive when mounted in the right platform. I drove this on the race track in the Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG. It's a powerful little gas burner, but exceedingly expensive.
It's already more or less confirmed that the new Z will have several engine options. A hybrid isn't out of the question as part of that mix.