Wouldn’t it be great when we have a new platform to play on? It doesn’t happen often, especially for Japanese automakers, so when a new model enters the sports car segment, it’s something to celebrate.
The new Nissan Fairlady/400Z is a popular car, although buyers have struggled to get their hands on the car due to high demand and some delays. That said, there were plenty of examples scattered around Tokyo Auto Salon 2023, most of which showcased the first parts that Japanese aftermarket manufacturers have been busy developing for the long-awaited models.
So here’s a quick rundown of what I encountered at the show – minus the Nismo RZ34, which couldn’t be more difficult to shoot.
Let’s start with the unexpected drag spec Z. Crewch makes the sporty drag wheels and radials, plus a pointed front spoiler and massive drag wings, all handcrafted from aluminium.
This blue Z on the Endless shows off some feature upgrades – namely a set of Zeal shocks that lower the car over its Enkei GTC02 wheels, and – most importantly – a complete Endless integral brake upgrade. Pushing the RZ34’s twin-turbo VR30DETT hard, it sure takes serious bungs.
Another Enkeis Z that I really liked ended up at the Blitz and this car also showed off the brake upgrades.
For tuners and customizers, one of the best features of the new Z is its ability to swallow big wheels.In fact, stock 19s look serious The size attached to the car is too small. You’ll see a wide variety of aftermarket wheels in this post, but I thought I’d note how well the pronounced concave profile fits the RZ34. These 20-inch Enkei RS05RRs are a perfect example, especially at the rear.
At the same booth, Blitz showed a second Z to showcase their Damper ZZ-R suspension kit…
And their first Nur-Spec exhaust system for a new car.
Most new Z owners will probably just want to enhance their car’s original look with some simple aesthetic additions, and I’m sure I’m not the only one interested to see what Varis brings to the party. They always manage to deliver a baseline aero package for a new performance model at lightning speed, and the RZ34 is no exception.
They injected the Nissan with a nice wet carbon with a simple trio of front lip, side skirt and rear bumper trimmers.For those who want more, there’s a lip spoiler, a carbon fiber hood, and a canard kit, not to mention the fender trim pieces, which are more to help people get through the biennial shake More than anything else, test with aftermarket wheels.
Other companies, such as Final Konnexion, have also come up with ideas of their own.
Of course, some put more emphasis on body mods to really change the look of the base car. We got a glimpse of the VeilSide FFZ400 ahead of TAS, but seeing it under the spotlight at the Yokomaku-san booth was pretty special.
At least if you’re actually looking at cars and not… feet?
Yokomaku-san’s deserved win in the coveted “decorated car” category added to the many accolades he has received at the Tokyo Auto Salon over the years.
While on the topic of transformation, TRA Kyoto’s Miura-san was also involved with his Pandem products at the Trust booth.
Trust also showed off their own RZ34 development car, which you’ll recall I went to see a week after it was delivered.
The RZ34 Pandem conversion goes far beyond the fender kit; there’s also a vented front bumper whose top is squeezed and pulled outward, giving the Z an almost shark-like nose.
Both the front and rear fenders have flat top sections that we’ve seen used on other Pandem kits, including the one for the GR86. In case you were wondering, yes, you do need to cut the stock fenders to accommodate the large wheel and tire package the kit is designed for.
An exaggerated duckbill spoiler adds continuity and balances the rear appearance. When I saw this kit in its entirety, I couldn’t help but think it would look perfect on a drift car.
Apparently, I’m not the only one who thinks so. Goodride had the same idea and built this Pandem-kitted Z for the 2023 Formula Drift Japan series starting in April. The car, on display at the RAYS booth, is fitted with Gram Lights 57CR 2324 limited edition wheels in any color of your choice as long as it’s Mach Yellow.
Also on RAYS, another Z was used to showcase a forged Volk Racing G025 in shiny black metal with diamond-cut edges.
It’s great to see the Volk catalog expanding to accommodate different designs.
But I’m sure I’m not the only one who would like to see the new Z land on a set of CE28N or ZE40.
Then there’s RAYS’ new performance/racing wheel, the NE24, which we first saw at the Nismo Festival last month. The NE is designed on the same philosophy as the CE and TE wheels, so we’ll probably be on Chamber of Commerce future events.
The other Zs at TAS 2023 are purely show-off fittings, but it’s always nice to see different wheel fittings.
I think BBS RI-D is perfect for Z. It’s at the Works Bell booth.
I had to put up a few photos of the Fairlady X, a pure concept car dreamed up by aspiring engineers at Nissan Technical Institute.
I think the idea here is to take the same approach Ford took when designing the Mustang Mach-E, but apply it to the old Nissan Murano. What do you think of the result?
It’s always interesting to see how the aftermarket embraces new platforms. Japan is taking its tried and tested baby steps, which will make it interesting to follow and see how everything develops. With the experience of the US tuners on the VR30, they are way ahead of the actual engine/mechanical parts and tuning, but I believe Japan will get there soon.
dino dal carbonal