In response to Ericís comment, I wish to defend the 280ZX. As the owner of an Australian delivered 1982 manual series II 280ZX for 23 years and more recently an Australian delivered 1992 300ZX, Iíve noticed the 280ZX gets far more favourable response than the 300ZX. Maybe itís the rarity of seeing a 280ZX on the road these days, or thatís itís a decent example, but it does tend to get the thumbs up.
Thereís no doubting the lovely lines of the 240Z but I thought it rather harsh to call the 2+2 an ďugly ducklingĒ. Admittedly, I prefer the profile of the 280ZX 2 seater however Nissan Australia, in their infinite wisdom, never imported the 2 seater 280ZX or the Turbo variant, same goes for the Z32 300ZX.
No shortage of turbo two- seater 300ZXs now, thanks to grey imports, but I know of only three 2 seater RHD 280ZXs in Australia and all are heavily modified.
For me, Nissan hit the mark when it came to designing a GT for the 1980s which was their intention and for someone well over 6í tall itís a very comfortable ride. Stats alone prove the models popularity and appeal. Worldwide, Nissan sold 421,922 280ZXs in five years (average 84,000 per year sales), compared to 531,601 Zs over eight years (average 66,000 per year sales). As for my 300ZX I also love the looks and ride, itís a very different car as youíd expect and Iíd offer it to you for the retrospective, but itís an auto and Iím sure youíd prefer a stick shift example.
Finally, Hollywood heart throb, actor and professional racing driver Paul Newman successfully raced the 280ZX, winning the C Production Class SCCA National Championship. Handsome actor with a good looking carÖ no argument.