The ad for today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe custom 350Z claims it was originally a show cars and was dubbed the ‘Mule’ by its builders. Its present owner says he’s ‘tamed’ it some since, but it’ll be up to you to decide if paying its asking price would be a jackass move.
There, that’s more like it. While not unexpected –originality is king in the classic car market – paying a premium for a car just because it’s been unmolested sort of feels a little unintuitive. Still, the real selling point of yesterday’s ’93 Mazda RX7 was that it was ‘bone stock’ and that impressed 57% of you enough to anoint its seventeen-grand asking with a Nice Price win.
Okay, black and white, day and night, fight or flight, today is all about contrariety, and this 2003 350Z is a complete contrast to yesterday’sMazda. That’s because it has a reciprocating engine and the RX7 rocks a Wankel. No wait, actually it’s because while that Mazda was factory-appointed and nothing more this Nissan has had, shall we say, things done to it.
At least those things appear to have been professionally done.
In case you hadn’t noticed, Nissan never offered a turbo option for its 350Z. That’s kind of a head scratcher considering the long legacy of boosted Zs that came before it. The VQ35DE V6 pumped out some pretty serious horsepower – 287-bhp in the base car – without any kind of forced induction, but as is always the case some people just want more.
This Z produces that elusive ‘more’ as it sports – among its other modifications – an intercooled turbo for the three and a half litre six. The ad says that the car was used to show off the turbo kit, which was developed by a company called Momentum Performance out of Wilmington NorthCarolina.
I’m thinking that, in light of the company dubbing the car ‘Mule’ that it was more likely the development car rather than a post-figuring-it-all-out-look-at-what-we-done kind of thing. That in fact is exactly what the company (R.I.P.) reps say in the video linked in the ad. Interestingly that kit was apparently almost eight grand to buy.
The turbo set up was joined here by a more aggressive clutch and significantly lowered suspension, because you know, race car. There are a ton of mods made to the suspension, a 370Z brake upgrade, CCW SP500 wheels, and most importantly a claim of 440 horses at those wheels.
Aesthetically, the car seems to be in great shape - save for that 33 on the side. The interior too seems to have held up well over the years - geez, has the 3X0Z really been around that long? - and doesn’t show any significant mods other than the radio and shift knob.
The present owner says he’s had the car for about 3 years and has put about 3,500 of its total 68,000 miles on it in that time. He’s also replaced the worn-out clutch with something a little more street and has raised the suspension so it now rides just .9” off stock. That’s adjustable for potential Gymkhana heroics.
The ad notes that the car was purchased with just that in mind however job responsibilities led to it not happening just like fetch never happened. A new owner could fulfill the dream – and honor the memory of Momentum Performance - by buying the car. All it would take is $13,000.
What do you think, is that a fair price for this ‘Mule?’ Or, do the mods – and the fact that this was an R&D chassis – make that far too much for this mule to carry?
H/T to wintermute for the hookup!
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