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Nissan eventually plans to phase out the V6 for a turbocharged four-banger

Looming EPA regulations have resulted in big changes in the automotive world. We've seen a number of V8 engines give way to turbocharged V6s, while V6 engines in midsize sedans are being tossed or replaced with turbocharged inline-4s.
We're also on the cusp of seeing huge weight reductions for iconic automotive nameplates. The Ford is reportedly eyeing a 700-pound weight reduction for the next generation F-150 and a 400-pound weight reduction for the next Mustang.
According to a new report from Motor Trend, another fan favorite is going on a diet all in the name of performance and fuel economy concerns. The next generation Nissan Z (codenamed Z35) will lose two inches in width and a whopping 400+ pounds. The huge weight reduction would put the next generation Z below 2,900 pounds.

2013 Nissan 370Z
Motor Trend's sources indicate that while Nissan plans to offer the next generation Z with a V6 when it launches, the "master plan" is to phase out the V6 entirely in favor of a turbocharged, 2.5-liter inline-4. The turbo four will reportedly pump out 330hp, putting it on par with the 3.7-liter V6 used in the current 370Z.
The weight reduction and move to four-cylinder power should allow the new Z to achieve EPA numbers far better than the current car’s 18/26 mpg (city/highway) with a manual transmission.

Source: Motor Trend

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By 91TTZ on 8/27/2013 3:12:50 PM , Rating: 2
Smaller turbocharged engines don't always get better MPG. I have a 300ZX TT and it has a 3 liter V6, smaller than the 3.7 liter V6 in the 370Z. Yet I only get 22 mpg highway with it.

300ZXTT, 3.0 liter V6, 22 mpg
370Z, 3.7 liter V6, 26 mpg
Corvette, 6.2 liter V8, 29 mpg

Remember when Ford switched to the EcoBoost V6 in their trucks and claimed how much more efficient it is than a V8? Chevy's trucks stayed with V8s and get better fuel efficiency than Ford's ecoboost engines, all the while being simpler and less expensive.

By Sivar on 8/27/2013 4:43:54 PM , Rating: 2
You can't compare displacement of overhead cam engines to pushrod engines (Corvette).
Your point is still interesting, though.

By freedom4556 on 8/27/2013 5:50:54 PM , Rating: 2
Why the hell can't he? What does the actuation mechanism for the valves have to do with the swept volume of the cylinders? Mind boggling!

By Alexvrb on 8/28/2013 1:10:24 AM , Rating: 3
Well, displacement isn't important by itself. Otherwise you get these idiots that think that having a 300HP 2.0L is somehow automatically "better" or "more efficient" than a bigger engine with the same output - even though this isn't necessarily true!

DOHC engines tend to have higher output at the same displacement, so he is partially correct - it's silly to compare apples to apples using displacement numbers like that's supposed to mean anything. Especially given that OHV "V" engines are physically more compact than their DOHC brethren and thus very power dense.

So really, engine output (HP, Torque, and the associated curves) and actual real-world efficiency is what really matters. With that being said... the 6.2L LS3 (and new LT1) is a good example of how you can get good mileage AND power out of a naturally aspirated pushrod V8. The new 5.3L (LT1-derived) in their 2014 trucks is also similarly powerful and efficent. Oh, and they also build turbo L4 and V6 engines, so it's not like they're adverse either route.

By Samus on 8/28/2013 3:34:54 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with his point, as well. Why does Nissan's 3.7L V6 only get 26MPG Highway in such a slender vehicle?

Our 2012 Escape with a 240HP V6 does better than that, and it's a box on wheels. The engine is also a remnant of the 90's, still using coilpack ignition, MPFI, fixed cam gears and fixed intake runners. It isn't the epitome of efficiency.

By FITCamaro on 8/28/2013 10:01:30 AM , Rating: 2
The Corvette is both lighter and has lower highway gear ratios. The Nissan weighs more and is geared higher for better acceleration. Simple as that.

By 91TTZ on 8/28/2013 5:19:23 PM , Rating: 3
Part of the benefit to using a large displacement engine is that you can produce your torque down lower. When cruising at highway speeds RPM because one of the main factors in fuel consumption. If you can cruise at 1600 rpm instead of 3000 RPM that's a pretty big difference in fuel economy.

When you graph out the different factors in engine efficiency you see that some things increase linearly while some things square with speed.

By Skywalker123 on 8/30/2013 3:43:57 PM , Rating: 2
The only replacement for cubic inches is cubic money.

By Jeffk464 on 8/27/2013 6:45:31 PM , Rating: 2
I guess that means this will be a 250Z, the numbers are going backwards.

By Jeffk464 on 8/27/2013 6:48:52 PM , Rating: 3
Hey wait a second, that's suspiciously the same displacement as the 4cyl in the altima. Sounds like this is not going to be a new from the ground up engine.

By Chaser on 8/27/2013 7:46:14 PM , Rating: 4
The 1990's, 300ZX TT (VG30DETT) engine wasn't designed to break any fuel economy records.

2010 BMW 335i twin turbo V6: 320hp/332lb-ft 28mpg hiway
2013 Audi S5 Supercharged V6: 333HP/325lb-ft, 27MPG hiway.
2013 Ford Focus ST: 252HP/270lb-ft 32mpg hiway

And don't let the Ford fool you: I've driven both it and the 300Z ZXTT. The Focus ST will eat it for lunch off the line up to 85mph. (both stock)

Technology matters, 20 years later.

By SeeManRun on 8/27/2013 7:54:49 PM , Rating: 2
Power takes gas. Your comparison here isn't ideal. You're comparing a turbo 3 litre to a 3.7 litre naturally aspirated.

Why not compare the eco-boost 3.5 litre with the naturally aspirated 3.7 litre on an F150? Well, it makes no sense, that is why. The 3.7 puts out a fraction of the horse power and torque.

So, does your 3 litre turbo charged in your comparison put out the same HP and torque as the 3.7 litre? And what highway speeds are you running?

When Ford switched they claimed power of a V8 and fuel economy of a V6, but not in all situations. If you are towing 10k pounds up a hill, you will get V8 numbers, but if you're just idling along the freeway, your numbers will be comparable to a V6. That is the beauty of turbo, it is there when you need it, and only adds a bit of weight when you don't.

By 91TTZ on 8/28/2013 4:59:18 PM , Rating: 2
Power takes gas. Your comparison here isn't ideal. You're comparing a turbo 3 litre to a 3.7 litre naturally aspirated.

Even the 3L NA V6 in the non-turbo Z gets poor fuel economy. That only has 222 HP but it still doesn't do much better than the TT version.

If you are towing 10k pounds up a hill, you will get V8 numbers, but if you're just idling along the freeway, your numbers will be comparable to a V6.

That's not how it works at all. Your required fuel is going to be proportional to the efficiency of the engine and the power it needs to produce. The Chevy V8 in their truck gets better fuel economy than the Ford Ecotec even when cruising on the highway.

That is the beauty of turbo, it is there when you need it, and only adds a bit of weight when you don't.

The turbo requires that your engine run a lower compression ratio than the non-turbo version would. This means that you lose some efficiency. Also, the turbo is a bit of a restriction in the exhaust stream.

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