2023 Nissan Z Proto: US dealer tries to charge double the price

Nissan Zed fans in the US are furious about a dealer’s attempt to double the price for the in-demand coupe.

A US new-car dealer has been slammed online for attempting to charge a ‘market adjustment’ fee of $US60,000 ($AU92,950) – on top of the RRP of $US52,990 ($AU82,100) – for a Nissan Z Proto, effectively doubling the price of the limited-edition sports car.

Market adjustment fees – or inflated dealer-delivery fees – are applied by new-car dealers to models which are in short supply but high demand.

Regardless of what it is called, it is an attempt at maximising the profit on rare or limited-edition vehicles.

The scandal was first reported by Carscoops after a Nissan fan and potential buyer Dustin Mckeehan – a member of ‘The New Nissan Z’ fan Facebook group – uploaded a photo of the price sheet displayed on a car at a Nissan dealership in Carrollton, Georgia.

According to Mr Mckeehan’s post, the dealer applied a market adjustment fee of $US60,000 ($AU92,950) to the Nissan Z, pushing its drive-away price to $US129,999 – equivalent to more than $AU200,000.

In the US, the cheapest Nissan Z is priced from $US39,990 ($AU62,000) plus on-road costs, while the flagship Z Proto – limited to just 240 examples – starts from $US52,990 ($AU82,100).

Even without the so-called “market adjustment”, the Georgia-based car dealer was charging $US69,999 ($AU108,000) for the Nissan Z – about $US17,000 ($AU26,300) more than the Z Proto’s recommended retail price.

Mr Mckeenhan’s post did not explain why the Nissan Z’s price was considerably higher than the sports car’s list price even without the market adjustment fee, with the photo only displaying additional costs for items such as locking wheel nuts and nitrogen-filled tyres.

While a majority of comments on the Facebook post criticised the dealer for applying the exorbitant mark-up, its executive manager, Skyler Evans, claimed the Nissan Z had been sold despite the outrage.

“Thank you for all of the feedback. The vehicle has since been sold,” Mr Evans’ Facebook comment said. 

“We appreciate the attention both positive and negative. The new Z is an amazing machine so try not to lose focus on that. The car and price is not for everyone and we understand that.”

In response to one commenter who suggested the Nissan Z “should have no mark-up”, Mr Evans likened the market adjustment fee to supermarkets charging customers more than wholesale prices for essential goods such as food.

“Why should this car have no mark-up?” Mr Evans replied. 

“Do the shoes you wear have markup built into the pricing? Is the food you order and eat marked up or do you have the luxury of purchasing everything at wholesale (prices)? 

“At some point the argument of what the car is worth boils down to what someone is willing to pay for it. Porsche, Hummer, Ford Lightning, Ferrari, Toyota Supra and so on have all been offered with markets at some point in time and guess what, the vehicles still sold with no harm or foul to you. 

“You joined the Z Group page hopefully to celebrate the enjoyment of Z’s as an enthusiast, not as a market analyst whose sole purpose is to shit on those responsible for retailing the vehicles.” 

In Australia, the Nissan Z’s base variant is priced from $73,300 plus on-road costs, while the Proto grade starts from $80,700. 

While Nissan Australia held about 480 orders for the Z Proto, all 240 Australian-delivered examples of the limited-edition sports car sold out in August.

As previously reported, a new flagship Nissan Z Nismo is expected to launch next year, with overseas publications suggesting the high-performance variant could cost up to 40 per cent more than the standard sports car.

Jordan Mulach

Jordan Mulach is Canberra/Ngunnawal born, currently residing in Brisbane/Turrbal. Joining the Drive team in 2022, Jordan has previously worked for Auto Action, MotorsportM8, The Supercars Collective and TouringCarTimes, WhichCar, Wheels, Motor and Street Machine. Jordan is a self-described iRacing addict and can be found on weekends either behind the wheel of his Octavia RS or swearing at his ZH Fairlane.

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