Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Hot Wheels Nissan Fairlady Z and Datsun 240Z

Hot Wheels does have a tendency to make a certain model multiple times in different disguises, and usually the most common are Mustang and Camaro's.  Sometimes they tend to do it on other models as well, but the JDM culture which has been taking a hit by storm since the Datsun 510 Wagon appeared in the 2013 Boulevard line has not had that option of late.  Still, there are some variants starting to come out and  mostly all of them so far from the Nissan/Datsun division with the GTR and the 510 and 620 family.  Now comes two different forms of the Nissan Z.

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Nissan Fairlady Z

This Hot Wheels model was designed for the Need For Speed game on which the car is featured in.  So this one is a heavily-modified version of the Nissan Z.  In other parts of the world the Z was called the Fairlady to follow the same line as the other Fairlady's sold.  For the US the President of Nissan just wanted the Z name for some reason.  Also the primary company was Datsun as Nissan was more of a performance brand name at the time before becoming a major automaker and replacing Datsun in 1983.  The Z car was performace packed in a tidy car that has the looks of a Jaguar E-type and Toyota 2000GT.  The primary powerplant was the 2.0L SOHC I-6 that produced 130 hp. through a 4-speed manual transmission.  Now as for this Hot Wheels Fairlady Z it's not clear what engine is used, but judging by the shape of the front-end with the round headlights exposed and a thick 5-mph bumper it is likely a 260Z with 2.6L that produces 139 hp and likely more with some modifications done to the motor.  The suspension has front struts and rear multi-link suspension with the added benefit of flared fenders to widen the track and larger rear tires that are as large as the Porsche 934 Turbo RSR!

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The body is kept clean save for some hood and side graphics with another sponsor: the Japanese Car Culture Set (JCCS) that also previews any new Hot Wheels casting with their logo on the vehicle.  The long hood and fastback roofline remains, though things do change at the rear: An upswept rear spoiler appears and a taillight panel that is part of the interior shows the custom add-on of GTR taillights to the rear.  The base shows off more of the lower engine and transmission details, the exhaust system, and the rear suspension parts, while the interior is a right-hand drive with the standard dash layout of two gauges (tach and speedo) behind the 3-spoke steering wheel, auxiliary gauges on the center-top portion of the dashboard, seating for two in racing buckets sans any head restraint, and a rear cargo area that shows off the shock mounts and duct area where the spare tire used to be.

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Datsun 240Z

While a tad bit wild, the new Z has far more detail than the first Z, the Datsun 240Z.  This casting was introduced in 2006 and so far has been mostly a racing casting for starters despite the nearly stock look.  The front has a taller nose with covered headlights (I prefer for them to be exposed), center grille, and revised bumper with larger grille area.  The stock hood remains, as does the side panels with just a small flare of the fender lips, while at the rear the stock rectangular taillights remain and are joined by dual exhausts.  This example show is the 2013 recolor based on Tom Bork's Z race car that he races at Watkins Glen race track.  The interior shows a left-hand drive layout with the same details as the other Z except the rear cargo area is not as finely detailed; same goes for the base as it shows less detail than the new Z.  Finally, performance on the old Z tends to feel a bit slower and not as stupidly fast and radical as the new Fairlady Z.

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All-in-all the new Nissan Fairlady Z looks to have a good fit in the Hot Wheels line despite the already well-known Datsun 240Z still hanging around.

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