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An Electric Z & GT-R? Nissan Considers the Future

The year was 2007. George W. Bush was President of the United States. Apple debuted an interesting new device called the iPhone, Facebook was still used primarily by college students and most people you asked would have had no idea what a “Twitter” was. That was also the year that Nissan debuted the R35 GT-R.

Nissan R35 GT-R Gray

Now nearly 12 years later, Nissan is still selling the R35, albeit one that’s been continually tweaked and upgraded over the years. The Nissan 370Z then followed the R35 to the market in late 2008, with it too now having been on sale for over a decade.

Nissan 370Z Red

Needless to say, many have been what wondering what exactly is going on with Nissan’s performance car line up and when new versions of the Z and GT-R might show up. As of now, the most fitting answer is “who knows?”

Nissan R35 GT-R Red Rear

Considering the Future

A recent story by Top Gear, however, has shed a little light on the future of Nissan’s top two performance cars. When the publication asked about replacements for the aging GT-R and Z, Nissan Chief Planning Officer Philippe Klein responded by saying the brand is “considering the future of these vehicles.”

Nissan 370Z Z34 Blue

Although vague in his answers, Klein also mentioned the performance credentials of electric and hybrid vehicles, leading one to wonder whether the next generation Z & GT-R might be at least partially electrified. Again, no firm answers were given but it certainly sounds like a strong possibility.

Nissan R35 GT-R Nismo

While there will surely be purists who’d be disappointed by an electric or hybrid Z or GT-R, cars like the rival Acura NSX have certainly shown they have a place, even when it comes to models with a rich performance heritage.

Nissan Z34 370Z Heritage Edition Blue

A Long Wait

The more concerning news though, is that Nissan is still “considering” the future for these models. With both platforms well over a decade old, one would hope their replacements would already be far along in development by this point.

Nissan R35 GT-R Gray Front

Of course, there’s a good chance Nissan is simply being tight-lipped and that development is already well under way, but one also has to wonder whether follow-ups to the Z and R35 have even been approved at all.

nissan future 11

Whether the next gen GT-R and Z and end up being gas-powered, electric or a combination of the two we certainly hope that Nissan is indeed working on new versions of these important cars. Because while it’s true that sports and performance cars aren’t bread and butter products for most brands, there’s still no better way to generate excitement for a brand—particularly one with a history and fan base like Nissan. Here’s wishing we have some more substantial news on the future Z & GT-R soon.

Love GT-Rs? Take a look at this track-prepped 2015 R35.

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