Take it or leave it: used picks for 22 April

Open gallery

We’ll take this £8495 Nissan 350Z

This low-mileage Suzuki Alto isn’t as rare as you think

This BMW 330ci is tempting

The Lotus Europa is something of an oddity

Close News by Jack Warrick 3 mins read 22 April 2022 Follow @jackwarrick Share

You don’t have to to break the bank for a satisfying dose of speed these days.

For proof, look no further than the Nissan 350Z – one of the Japanese firm’s most alluring junior performance packages that, even in its heyday, had an attainable price and bags of kerb appeal.

Propelled by a naturally aspirated 3.5-litre V6, the early 350Z offered 276bhp. It was initially available as a coupé and all cars were rear-wheel drive with a six-speed manual gearbox.

Related articles

Shire-county stalwarts – which cars did we miss?Greatest roadtests ever: Seat Leon Cupra RAudi R8 to Vauxhall VX220: Used mid-engined sports carsBuy them before we do: Used picks for July 1Take it or leave it: why the McLaren 12C was a near-masterpiece

Power was uprated in 2005 to a lusty 296bhp and a roadster was added to the line-up. Straight-line speed was quick enough to get your attention: with 296bhp, the model completed 0-62mph in 5.8sec in the coupé and 6.2sec in the roadster.

If that’s not enough poke, look for the HR (for ‘high response’) model. Produced from 2007, it received a comprehensive engine overhaul that boosted power to 308bhp.

The revised car also gained a new front bumper, bi-xenon headlights and updated LED tail-lights. And inside, the 350Z was equipped with a new sat-nav as well as larger door bins.

We thought the transmission was far smoother than the original car’s and road noise was reduced. In fact, we would certainly choose a later example, if funds allow, because of its vastly improved refinement and impressive engine reliability over those from launch.

We were tempted by a 2009 example that’s up for just £8495. Although it has covered 115,000 miles, it’s a one-owner car with no aftermarket additions, a full Nissan service history, a three-month warranty and 12 months of AA cover.

It’s also in GT spec, which adds features such as electric seats, leather upholstery and cruise control.

With any 350Z, it’s wise to check the suspension bushes, because the ones on the lower control arms tend to fail at 75,000 miles. Ensure the power steering is in good nick, as well as the clutch, which might need replacing after around 45,000 miles at a cost of £600 or so.


Latest Drives

BMW X7 xDrive40d M Sport

BMW X7 xDrive40d M Sport

Renault Clio E-Tech 2023 first drive

Renault Clio E-Tech 2023 first drive

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio 2023 first drive

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio 2023 first drive

Polestar 2 Long Range Single Motor RWD 2023 first drive

Polestar 2 Long Range Single Motor RWD 2023 first drive

Peugeot 3008 136 e-DCS6 Hybrid 2023 first drive

Peugeot 3008 136 e-DCS6 Hybrid 2023 first drive

View all latest drives

Back to top

Verdict: Take it

Suzuki Alto, £4560: The current owner describes this 2014 Suzuki Alto as “ultra-low” mileage, and it has covered a low-sounding 34,440 miles, but that’s only about 4500 below the typical mileage for an Alto of this age. It also suffered a category-S incident at some point (although it has been fully repaired), which makes its £4650 price seem less tempting.

Verdict: Leave it

BMW 330Ci, £6250: This 2005 BMW coupé is a no-brainer. It has been routinely serviced, meaning its ‘M54’ 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol engine should be in excellent condition for its 86,900 miles. The advert also says the car has always been garaged and used sparingly in wet weather – and there’s certainly no sign of rust on the bodywork in the photos. So go on: you know you want to.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *