Sorry purists, Nissan’s next Z car could be a Juke-sized crossover

Nissan 370Z Nismo

As crossover fever is reaching new heights in the United States and abroad, a report published by British magazine Autocar claims the next Nissan Z will take the form of a tall, sporty-looking soft-roader.

Details are still few and far between, but the Z-badged crossover is expected to be about the same size as the Juke. Nissan hasn’t decided if the yet-unnamed model will arrive as a two-door model like the Land Rover Ranger Rover Evoque Coupe, or if it will follow the path blazed by the Juke and feature four doors with concealed rear handles to create a coupe-like look.

Regardless of how many doors it has, the crossover will feature a sharply-sloping roof line. It will likely arrive as a four-seater, but the rear seats won’t be any roomier than those of the 370Z (pictured) that’s currently on sale. Up front, it will feature a sport-focused cockpit with bucket seats and track-inspired instrumentation.

The new model will allegedly share its modular platform with a long list of Renault and Nissan models, and it will be powered by downsized turbocharged four-cylinder engines. A gasoline-electric hybrid model and a NISMO-tuned range-topper could join the lineup later in the production run.

Autocar claims Nissan’s Z on stilts will be previewed by a concept that will be presented next month at the Frankfurt Motor Show. As is typically the case, Nissan has not commented on the matter.

If the rumor turns out to be true, the Z won’t be the only iconic Japanese car to morph into a crossover. Mitsubishi Motors recently announced plans to stop building sedans in a bid to focus on SUVs and crossovers, and the next model to wear the storied Evolution emblem will be a sport-focused version of the upcoming Outlander Sport.