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Thread: What to look for when looking for a 350Z?

  1. #11
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    The mechanic phoned me earlier to talk through the results of the inspection on the NI car. There's one thumb-size dent in the front nearside wing, and the air con, while it works, smells terribly mouldy. A few other general minor dings and scrapes too - I may be able to judge better when I get the photos through tonight. But overall he sounded positive about the car.

  2. #12
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    Pics of car / bodywork issues:



    Damaged alloy (rest apparently fine)


    Dent (upper) and scrape on front bumper


    Dent in door, minor scuff on mirror


    Rear bumper looking backwards, slightly misaligned


    Scrape on front wing


    Marks on paint on door

  3. #13
    Hard to tell with the ding in the front wing, but the one in the door can probably come out with a good PDR guy (what we call them here - no idea if they have a different name in the UK). The other paint flaws can be touched up but will never look right - just better from 10ft+. I wonder if the streaky marks in the last pic, below the door handle and on the right side of the picture, are scuffs in the paint or is just residue from a quick wipedown.

    That kind of stuff would bother me but if I knew it'd be a track car and it was mechanically sound and a good deal, maybe I could look over the rough patches.

    Not sure why AC would smell moldy.

    I am not familiar with what would cause the bumper misalignment either.

    What's with the gauge lenses having dried watery spots on them?

  4. #14
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    Interesting and typically well thought out analysis of 350 v 370. Thanks!

  5. #15
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    Thanks a lot for the tips :-)

    The mechanic said the paint is heavily swirled, he said as the owner is an older gentleman he probably still washes his cars with a single bucket and sponge, unlike the 'younger generation'. So I'm assuming that the water marks are from a recent wash, and I guess inside on the dials too - quite easy to wipe the interior with a wet cloth/sponge and leave water marks I think. Yeah, we call it paintless dent removal here too, at least there's the prospect of one of them being fixable, and the kerbed wheel refurbed.

    That's the conundrum, whether to travel and buy this car, or to leave it and keep on looking for one with better bodywork. I appreciate it will never be perfect without a respray. I think I'm leaning towards buying it; the prospect of keeping looking isn't super attractive. First, although the 350Z sold well here, the later HR cars are less common; they were only a few model years, they were after the annual road tax doubled for thirstier cars in '06, and the car was no longer the hot new thing. Many of the cars are silver, grey or black, with only a few in an actual colour, as I want. Second, they seem to have thin paintwork - I understand there was actually a class action suit in the US against Nissan over excessive stone-chipping. The red car I saw on Sunday was worse, the previous blue car was similar I think. And finally if I do find a car that's actually in showroom condition (as this was advertised as, but clearly is not), then it's likely to be quite a lot more money. But of course, there's some attraction in insisting on higher standards and keeping on looking, a super well cared-for car could come up privately.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Leon's Avatar
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    Black cars while pretty, are a nightmare to keep looking nice for more than 10 minutes at a time

  7. #17
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    Cars that old in the UK are generally ripe for a respray anyway.

    Or a wrap. Grey chrome in da house!!!

  8. #18
    Twelve years old is ripe for a respray? Yikes! I realize garages are in shorter supply in the UK but it's not like the sun is out in full force to oxidize the paint either.

    Thomas, I can totally appreciate your desire for an actual color. San Marino Blue (the NI car) looks very nice when cleaned up. I know a guy with a crazy low miles example, and he's a detailer, so it's like walking into a Nissan showroom in 2007.

    My '07 had the best paint I've had on a car. Super easy to correct, and the glow from the metallic highlights was superb. Orange peel wasn't excessive. I didn't find my 350Zs to be more prone to road rash than any other Japanese car I've owned. In fact, they held up pretty well. Better than my S2000 did. That was the thinnest paint I've seen personally. Anyhow, some of it may have to do with environment where the car was driven.

  9. #19
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    It's on... I've agreed to buy it.

  10. #20
    Severed Member JoeW's Avatar
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    How do the younger generation wash their cars?

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