As much as we've grown to love Nissan's award-winning line of VQ six-cylinder powerplants, reality dictates that time marches on and a replacement will soon be needed. According to Tetsuya Takahashi, a manager at Nissan's Powertrain Engineering Division, a switch to smaller displacements may be in the offing along with a return to forced induction – much like what Ford has done with its EcoBoost series of engines.
Nissan and Renault have well-known plans to share virtually all powerplants from this point forward, and this move would likely allow for both small and fuel efficient powerplants for passenger car duty – which is especially important in Europe – along with somewhat larger and much more powerful engines for high-performance models. Drawbacks include the additional cost of the turbocharging hardware and a more difficult path to emissions approval, so future turbo Nissans are far from a sure thing.
For those old enough to remember Nissan's pre-2002 series of Z cars, which received its first turbocharger way back in 1981 and reached its horsepower apogee in the form of the 300-horsepower 300ZX Turbo in 1990 (not to mention the incredible RB and SR powerplants), this news may be welcomed with open arms. As far as we're concerned, a slightly detuned version of the VR38DETT V6 powering fire-breathing GT-R would look mighty fine under the shapely hood of the next-gen Z.