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The new Nissan Z will probably hit dealerships in about a year from the time this article is published. The chances are that if you’re reading this, you are interested in picking up the 2023 Nissan Z, or you may be ready to buy right now. There is also a good chance that a significant portion of you are the type to not keep your car stock for very long.

If you are who we think you are, you intend to modify that Nissan Z coupe as soon as you get your hands on it. You may not be sure what parts to start with. We have a few meaningful suggestions that we think you can benefit from without going overboard. 

An OBD ECU tuning device

A front view of a Cobb Tuning Access port device
Cobb Access Port ECU tuner | Cobb Tuning

There will be a lot of Nissan Z owners who spring for major engine performance parts right away. Some will go for larger turbos; others will look for larger intercoolers. While parts like that can add considerable power, they are pretty expensive and can affect the daily drivability of the car. There are other ways to increase power and even responsiveness without changing any parts under the hood, such as an ECU tuner.

An ECU tuner is an external device that plugs into a car’s OBD II port. Once plugged in, it is capable of changing the parameters of a car’s stock ECU software. It can remove the speed limiter, change ignition maps, and on turbocharged cars, they can even change boost pressure. 

Be warned; the actual tuning should only be done by a professional. Changing parameters on a car’s ECU when you do not know what you’re doing can be disastrous and potentially cause severe damage to the engine. Also, make sure you check state laws and regulations before tuning your ECU. In California, ECU tuning results in automatic failed smog checks.

Wheels and performance tires

A 3D computer model of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires on a fictional wheel.
Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 Tires | Michelin

The 2023 Nissan Z will undoubtedly come with tires that are great for daily driving and will have respectable performance on the occasional track day. However, since those tires have to do double duty, their performance will lean much harder toward street driving than track driving. Tires are pivotal for exploiting a car’s full performance potential.

Having a spare set of wheels wrapped with track-minded tires is a great way to make sure you experience everything your Nissan Z has to offer. If you do not want to swap wheels out, you can just buy high-performance tires for the stock wheels. Just be aware that track-focused tires may not handle very well in wet weather; so they can be dangerous to use on public streets.

Blow-off valve (BOV)

An aftermarket blow-off valve for turbocharged vehicles.
GReddy Blow-Off Valve | GReddy

We admit that this suggestion is mostly just for fun and vanity. A blow-off valve (BOV) relieves any remaining boost pressure in the intake when the throttle is closed. A BOV can prevent a backpressure surge which may damage the turbochargers. Most modern turbo cars come with a blow-off valve from the factory.

However, aftermarket BOVs do things a little differently. They still protect the turbos by relieving excess pressure, but they do it with an audible “whoosh” sound bound to turn some heads if you’re into that kind of thing.

There are countless other ways to modify your Nissan Z once you bring it home from the dealership. The right modifications to make will depend on what you want to do to make your car your own, but we hope our suggestions help you figure out which way you want to go.


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