Nissan’s Z cars seem to be getting plenty of love lately with a pristine Datsun 240Z selling only a few weeks ago for a quite ridiculous $310,000. Now, a 300ZX Fairlady is going up for grabs with one of the world’s most respected auction houses, RM Sotheby’s.
For eleven years now the 370Z has been Nissan’s latest attempt at a rear-driven sports car for the masses, but unfortunately, it was hugely underwhelming compared to its predecessor, the 350Z. But before even that, the 300ZX Fairlady set the standard with a twin-turbo DOHC 3.0-litre VG30 V6 that would chirp between gears, and body styling that even Italian’s best would swoon over – it’s no secret that Lamborghini bought the rights to use its headlights on the Diablo. This car is exceptional, and could now be yours to own as long as you have the cash.
This specimen has only 2,566 miles on the odometer, and its VIN indicates that it was one of the first 100 units ever built by the Japanese marque. This means it’s the more desirable two-seater layout and pushes its 300 bhp through a five-speed manual gearbox. To aid agility, it has active four-wheel steering.
While the majority of Z cars were built as sports cars, the 300ZX looked to fill a GT niche for the company, with this specific car boasting a T-top removable roof for a luxury open-air driving experience. The wrap-around leather is in perfect condition, as is the cloth on the door cards and the lower sections of the dashboard. It is pure retro, and so much better for it, despite its technology only stretching to a cassette player and fighter jet-style switches behind the wheel.
Remarkably showroom fresh, this car would be a jewel in anyone’s collection. But as recent trends are showing, JDM cars of this calibre are starting to pull in serious cash leaving me with only one question: how much will someone pay for this Fairlady?
Here’s what RM Sotheby’s had to say:
When it came time to redesign its legendary Z car for the 1990s, Nissan kept the basic proportions and performance mission of its predecessor while taking advantage of numerous technological leaps. The new 300ZX retained 3.0-liter power, but the big headliner was the new twin-turbocharged VG30 V-6, which boasted dual overhead camshafts as well as variable valve timing. Power output was raised substantially to 300 horsepower, while a version of the four-wheel-steering system cribbed from the Skyline ensured impressive handling. The redesigned 300ZX was intended to be more of a grand touring car than its predecessor, so it was plusher and far more refined inside. Its sleek shape with integrated bumpers and gorgeous alloy wheels was revolutionary for a sports car at the time.
The first-year 300ZXs balance purity of design with the luxurious features that the Z32 would come to be known for. This example’s black leather interior features power adjustable seats wrapped in leather, contrasted with distinctive fabric trim that flows from the doors to the dash and to the center console. Controls are largely clustered within convenient view and reach of the driver. Interestingly, Nissan badging is limited to the brake calipers—Nissan wouldn’t boast until a fascia badge was added for the 1991 model year.
This 1990 300ZX comes from the first year of production, and its chassis number indicates it was one of the first 100 serialized Z32-generation 300ZX cars off the line. Finished in striking silver over a black leather interior, the car is equipped with removable glass roof panels. Just 2,566 miles are shown on its odometer, a testament to its exceptional preservation.