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Nissan has a new heavy hitter in the sports car segment, and it promises to shake things up. Of course, we’re talking about the retro-inspired Nissan Z and its 400-horsepower twin-turbocharged 3.0L V6. However, even the range-topping Nissan Z Performance has competition to contend with, one of the most formidable rivals being the Ford Mustang Mach 1. Still, the Nissan Z Performance has three advantages over the Ford Mustang Mach 1, like the Nissan’s starting price. 

How much will the Performance Z cost?

The Nissan Z Performance is cheaper than the Ford Mustang Mach 1 and a comparable Toyota GR Supra 3.0. Specifically, the range-topping Performance trim starts at $51,015. That puts the refreshed coupe at about $5,950 less than the sharpened Ford Mustang Mach 1. 

The Nissan Z Performance has a few advantages over the Ford Mustang Mach 1 including starting price.
The new Nissan Z | Nissan

While the Mach 1 wears performance features from the Shelby GT350 and Shelby GT500, the Z Performance also has sports-oriented components worthy of its price point. For instance, potential owners who opt for the Nissan Z Performance over a Sport trim will get a limited-slip differential, performance exhaust, rear spoiler, upgraded wheels, and 19-inch Rays wheels. 

How much does Nissan Z weigh?

According to Car and Driver, the Nissan Z Performance weighs around 3,507 lbs. While that seems portly compared to the Toyota GR Supra 3.0’s 3,382 lbs, it’s quite a bit lighter than the Ford Mustang Mach 1. The Mach 1 tips the scale at 3,793 lbs, nearly 400 lbs more than the smaller Nissan Z. 

The Mach 1 does its best to overcome that weight difference with horsepower. It produces 480 ponies from its naturally-aspirated 5.0L Coyote V8 engine compared to the Nissan’s 400. However, both cars produce enough horsepower to be traction-limited, especially the Nissan coupe with its Bridgestone Potenza tires

Is the Ford Mustang Mach 1 fuel efficient?

The Nissan Z Performance’s third advantage over the Ford Mustang Mach 1 is fuel economy. The 3.0L V6-powered Nissan sports coupe averages 18 mpg city and 24 mpg highway. That’s not great compared to the Toyota GR Supra in either trim; the 2.0L model gets around 29 mpg combined, and the 3.0L trims get around 27 mpg. 

However, the heavier, more powerful V8-powered Mach 1 is quite a bit thirstier than the Nissan sports car. The Mach 1 drinks an average of 14 mpg city and 22 mpg at highway speeds. The Nissan Z Performance is lighter and more efficient than the Mach 1. 

The Ford Mustang Mach 1 has many merits, but it can't compete with the Nissan Z Performance in a couple categories.
Ford Mustang Mach 1 | Ford

Is the Nissan Z Performance a good alternative for the Ford Mustang Mach 1? 

For potential owners who want a more efficient, lighter, cheaper alternative to Ford’s naturally-aspirated track star, the Nissan Z Performance is a solid choice. Its retro aesthetic, 400-horsepower 3.0L V6, and Performance trim make it an excellent sports coupe to challenge even V8-powered track-ready cars. Of course, the Mach 1 wrenches on the heartstrings with classic appeal and graphics as well as sharp, circuit-tuned handling characteristics. 

Moreover, the Toyota GR Supra, the natural rival for the Nissan sports coupe, is a solid alternative to the Mustang and other sports cars. Of course, the Z offers a manual and a 400-horsepower V6 at every trim level.  


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