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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'd like to ask a series of questions and at the end any additional feedback as a bonus would be very helpful so thank you in advance peeps.

Which exact models/years would be the cream of the crop that I should be looking for and why?
Any mileage sweet spot I should be looking for in 2022?
How does it drive in light snow? I know better not to take this thing out during heavy snowfall as i'm in Canada but for a good amount of the year I'll use it as a daily driver.
Anything else i'm missing? I want to mod the car like I did in NFSU2 as a kid but do it justice and make it a true beauty. No expense spared and a pretty high budget endgame. Love the community behind the machine, you all got great taste!
 

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Welcome and the first piece of advice is to be patient in shopping for a used Z33. It would help to know what other kind of cars you've owned and what your mechanical skills you have? While many will say the HR-powered Zs of 2007-08 are the best, a well-maintained older Z with good maintenance records are preferable to a newer one with spotty records. Since you live in Canada, it's best to tell you that Zs with their 50/50 static weight balance and RWD are NOT good snow cars. In heavy snow they can also get high-centered, even with snow tires. The best bit of advice here is to have a cheap winter beater to use. I live in Colorado and have a '07 Versa with snow tires to use while the Z stays in the garage on snowy days.

When seriously considering buying a used car, pay to have an independent mechanical assessment done. Expect to spend a couple hundred dollars for a written report that'll tell you exactly what condition the car is in. It's the only way to know exactly what you're buying! Finally, consider going to a driving school or track day(s) to learn about what driving a powerful RWD sportscar is about in controlled conditions. Don't mod the car for the first few years- rather learn about how it drives and mod the key part behind the wheel with improved car control skills and judgement.

Any more questions?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Welcome and the first piece of advice is to be patient in shopping for a used Z33. It would help to know what other kind of cars you've owned and what your mechanical skills you have? While many will say the HR-powered Zs of 2007-08 are the best, a well-maintained older Z with good maintenance records are preferable to a newer one with spotty records. Since you live in Canada, it's best to tell you that Zs with their 50/50 static weight balance and RWD are NOT good snow cars. In heavy snow they can also get high-centered, even with snow tires. The best bit of advice here is to have a cheap winter beater to use. I live in Colorado and have a '07 Versa with snow tires to use while the Z stays in the garage on snowy days.

When seriously considering buying a used car, pay to have an independent mechanical assessment done. Expect to spend a couple hundred dollars for a written report that'll tell you exactly what condition the car is in. It's the only way to know exactly what you're buying! Finally, consider going to a driving school or track day(s) to learn about what driving a powerful RWD sportscar is about in controlled conditions. Don't mod the car for the first few years- rather learn about how it drives and mod the key part behind the wheel with improved car control skills and judgement.

Any more questions?
This will be my first car! I have little to no mechanical skills but I am ready and going to/willing to learn immediately and know I'll enjoy the process. Thanks for the 50/50 weight balance I didn't know that. I'll be learning all the ins and outs of the car mechanics world through this Z.

Gotchu on the independent assessment, I already planned on driving on the track and feeling the car out completely/getting comfortable in average zones! Thanks for that tip. No bodykits or re-paint? headlights tailights? Nothing like that? Just stock for a year or 2? The most I'd do performance wise to it off top of getting it is get a quality popular exhaust. If you think I shouldn't I'll seriously heed the advice though. Thank you for the well written response and the patience tip is probably my favourite. I'll be buying one next year and try to be patient but if I see a great deal I'll take it. I feel like these are the last couple years to get in on the 350z before they become fossils like the 240sx.

My last questions is what have you found most troublesome/annoying with your Z? Also what mods or changes have you done to yours over the years? I hear the car is very reliable minus the snow which is good.
 

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This will be my first car! I have little to no mechanical skills but I am ready and going to/willing to learn immediately and know I'll enjoy the process. Thanks for the 50/50 weight balance I didn't know that. I'll be learning all the ins and outs of the car mechanics world through this Z.

Gotchu on the independent assessment, I already planned on driving on the track and feeling the car out completely/getting comfortable in average zones! Thanks for that tip. No bodykits or re-paint? headlights tailights? Nothing like that? Just stock for a year or 2? The most I'd do performance wise to it off top of getting it is get a quality popular exhaust. If you think I shouldn't I'll seriously heed the advice though. Thank you for the well written response and the patience tip is probably my favourite. I'll be buying one next year and try to be patient but if I see a great deal I'll take it. I feel like these are the last couple years to get in on the 350z before they become fossils like the 240sx.

My last questions is what have you found most troublesome/annoying with your Z? Also what mods or changes have you done to yours over the years? I hear the car is very reliable minus the snow which is good.
Since this is your first car, I suggest you buy a good set of metric hand tools to work on your Z. Also, having a garage with floor jack and good jack stands is a must. As for bodywork, paint or performance exhausts, that should be part of the mechanical assessment BEFORE purchase. That way you'll know if you need to budget some money to repair, repaint or replace certain parts.

My philosophy has always been to upgrade a part that needs replacement. For example, brake fluid replacement is often overlooked and can lead to spongy brakes, damaged brake master cylinders and accidents. So learn to do a four-wheel brake bleed properly with fresh DOT 4 fluid. Same thing for engine oil/filter, tranny, diff and radiator fluid. Freshen everything your mechanical assessment has flagged.
Wheel Tire Land vehicle Car Vehicle

As far as my Zs, I have both street and race Z33s. My preorder '03 track model (pictured above) has been progressively modded over the years, but still uses the original VQ35DE and redline paint. The suspension is tuned to how I like my cars to respond and handle, but the low ride height does scrape over speed bumps and some driveways. It's been one of the most reliable cars I've ever owned.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Since this is your first car, I suggest you buy a good set of metric hand tools to work on your Z. Also, having a garage with floor jack and good jack stands is a must. As for bodywork, paint or performance exhausts, that should be part of the mechanical assessment BEFORE purchase. That way you'll know if you need to budget some money to repair, repaint or replace certain parts.

My philosophy has always been to upgrade a part that needs replacement. For example, brake fluid replacement is often overlooked and can lead to spongy brakes, damaged brake master cylinders and accidents. So learn to do a four-wheel brake bleed properly with fresh DOT 4 fluid. Same thing for engine oil/filter, tranny, diff and radiator fluid. Freshen everything your mechanical assessment has flagged.
View attachment 53407
As far as my Zs, I have both street and race Z33s. My preorder '03 track model (pictured above) has been progressively modded over the years, but still uses the original VQ35DE and redline paint. The suspension is tuned to how I like my cars to respond and handle, but the low ride height does scrape over speed bumps and some driveways. It's been one of the most reliable cars I've ever owned.
Thank you good sir I'll be saving your message for future reference! Cheers
 

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Two other points to make for a neophyte Z car owner. First, the six-speed manual in the Z33 is a great gearbox, and while you may or may not be able to drive a stick, I suggest it's the better option to learn with it (but start with a fresh clutch) and swap to Redline MT85 gear lube to get the most out of the syncros. Second, my personal opinion is that the optional BOSE stereo (on the '03-08 Touring models) isn't worth buying. These integrated systems are difficult to mod with different speakers and amps, and don't offer the best sound IMHO. My street Z uses a Kenwood headunit with bluetooth hands-free connection to replace the OEM Clarion headunit that went out two years ago. Together with MB Quart speakers and a USX-2100 amp, they produce sublime music for not much $$.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you, I'll look over everything for reference! Yes everyone in my family drove manual for as long as I can remember so for my first car I want to keep up the small tradition. Very precise information here and that's a big one because I love music and that's perfect. You're a savant my friend! I'm not getting the roadster or whichever model has the black top for obvious reasons.
 
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