Monday, October 2, 2023
News Nissan Weighs Prospects of Manual Option for Z Nismo, Prioritizing Performance

Nissan Weighs Prospects of Manual Option for Z Nismo, Prioritizing Performance

Nissan’s Z Nismo draws attention for its sole automatic transmission, although the door remains ajar for a manual alternative.


  • Nissan’s Z Nismo is available solely with an automatic transmission, sparking discussions about a manual alternative.

  • Executives defend the automatic choice for performance reasons, citing quicker lap times achievable.

  • The door is not closed on a manual option, with Nissan open to customer demand and vehicle philosophy.


Nissan’s recent unveiling of the Z Nismo, a performance-driven iteration of its sports coupe, has stirred conversations among car enthusiasts, particularly about the available transmission choices. The company’s decision to offer the Z Nismo exclusively with a nine-speed automatic transmission, differing from the six-speed manual gearbox in the ‘standard’ Z model, has prompted inquiries regarding a manual transmission option. Nissan’s executives are defending this course of action, asserting that integrating a manual transmission might dilute the Z Nismo’s primary focus on speed and performance.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO | Photo : Nissan

Enhanced with improved clutch packs and software, the Z Nismo’s nine-speed automatic transmission promises heightened shift responsiveness and an enriched driving experience. Although some enthusiasts have voiced their disappointment regarding the absence of a manual transmission, Paul Hawson, Nissan’s North American director of advanced product planning, highlights that most customers prioritize achieving faster lap times. This is more attainable with an automatic transmission, which can outpace a manual transmission’s shift speed.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO | Photo : Nissan

Hawson underlines that the Z Nismo is engineered for performance enthusiasts who seek speed-oriented experiences, giving precedence to these aspects over the manual transmission’s tactile engagement.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO | Photo : Nissan

Despite the prevailing direction, Nissan’s executives are maintaining an open stance on the potential inclusion of a manual transmission for the Z Nismo. Hawson emphasizes that Nissan remains attentive to customer preferences. Should substantial demand arise for a manual option, Nissan is willing to consider its integration, provided it aligns with the vehicle’s customer-centric philosophy.

2023 Nissan Z Review: Muscle Car Z

Hiroshi Tamura, Nissan’s Chief Product Specialist responsible for the Z Nismo’s development, echoes this sentiment. He affirms that an automatic version of the standard Z model can outpace a Z Nismo equipped with a manual gearbox. For Tamura, the Z Nismo’s performance-driven nature necessitates prioritizing lap times, even if it might come at the cost of the manual transmission’s sensory engagement.

2024 Nissan Z NISMO | Photo : Nissan

The Z Nismo is anticipated to make its debut in Canada and is expected to be priced from $60,000 USD plus on-road costs – marking the highest price ever for a Nissan Z car. Although the incorporation of a manual transmission in the Z Nismo lineup seems uncertain, Nissan’s willingness to consider customer feedback underlines their commitment to striking a balance between performance and customer satisfaction.

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