350Z – MY2003-2009

Nissan 350Z NISMO
Nissan 350Z NISMO

Nissan 350Z

This vehicle is also known as the Infiniti G35 Coupe.

The Nissan 350Z was a two-seat sports car produced from 2003-2009. Carrying on the legacy of previous “Z” cars like the 240Z and the 300ZX, the 350Z was fast, beautiful, and reliable to boot. It featured Nissan’s near-bulletproof 3.5L V6 engine, producing almost 300hp despite weighing just over 3000 pounds – not far behind Porsche 911’s of the time. The car immediately made a name for itself in tuner culture, featured as the “star car” of video games like Need For Speed Underground 2 and showing up in movies like The Fast and the Furious. As such, it can be tricky finding a car that hasn’t been abused. Pre-purchase inspections are recommended for that reason.

Trim levels are somewhat complicated. For MY2003-2005, “Touring” was the top-level trim. In 2006, Nissan introduced the “Grand Touring” trim as the top trim, then removed the “Performance” trim and had the “Touring” trim take its place.

Nissan introduced heated side mirrors as standard in 2005. HID headlights became standard in 2006. Bluetooth and side airbags became standard in 2007.

Desirable Features

  • Leather seats
  • Bose stereo
  • Power seats
  • NISMO edition – 6-speed manual, viscous limited-slip differential, aero kit, Brembo brakes, upgraded suspension, NISMO-tuned exhaust, upgraded wheels, Yamaha front and rear dampeners, hand-welded structural seams (for more rigidity)

Engines

  • VQ35DE (MY03-06)
  • VQ35HR (MY07+)

Problems

All Vehicles

  • Clutches only tend to last about 40,000 miles
  • The nose is prone to stone chipping
  • The rear hatch struts tend to wear out and may need replacing
  • Front lower compression arm bushings – if detected early, only the bushings need to be replaced; otherwise, the entire arm needs to be replaced
  • Creaking from bumps at low speed may be fixed by replacing the rear drop links
  • Clicking noises from the rear wheels may be due to early wear of the rear CV joints
  • Knocking or ticking at idle – may simply require a new damper and hose in the fuel line
  • Manual transmissions:
    • Grinding noises and difficulty shifting from 1st to 2nd are likely due to worn synchros
    • A soft/spongy clutch may be due to failed seal inside clutch slave cylinder; requires replacement of cylinder

Certain Vehicles

  • VINs between 3T000001 and 3T100167: TSB –  Engine may shut off while the vehicle is driving if the crank position sensor or cam position sensor fail
  • MY03-05: TSB – Rear driveshafts may click when accelerating from rest. Repair requires removal of the driveshaft, cleaning of the outer joint flange surfaces, and application of Molykote M77 grease
  • MY06 vehicles with manual transmissions, MY05 Track, or MY05 35th Anniversary Edition vehicles: TSB – Engines may have excessive oil consumption or make an “unusual” noise. This requires replacement of the short engine assembly (however, most owners choose to simply top up the oil instead).
  • Early models: Vehicles may experience accelerated tire wear from bad alignment