The thrill of the 370Z becomes apparent as soon as you push the start button. The seven-speed automatic transmission is a wonder, combining the immediacy of the GT-R with an intuitive responsiveness to the driver's input as I hurl it around corners on the road to Shek O. Floor the accelerator and the Z's transmission leaps up through the gears at a lightning pace - but with such linear precision that it's reassuring rather than hurried. Similarly, hard braking for a tight bend doesn't flummox the auto gearbox either, and it's pleasing to feel the smooth kick-down on the downshift is accompanied by rorty blips from the engine - just like in the manual model. Nissan has done well to keep the weight down in the new 370Z - aluminium door panels, bonnet and boot help with this, and the body weight has been reduced by around 100kg through the use of stronger, lighter body materials. Although it pumps out only a few brake horsepower more than the 350Z's engine, the new unit produces much more torque than the outgoing model. Combined with the lighter body weight and wider gear ratios in the seven-speed box, the all-new V6 block in the 370Z offers blistering pace on the twisty Shek O road, and the marque's claim of 0-100km/h in less than five seconds seems right on the money. Stopping is easier too, as Nissan has dropped the Brembos in favour of its own disc brakes (four-piston calipers up front, two at the rear), which provide impressive stopping power - again, in a composed, measured and reassuring manner - that makes the Nissan's braking the best in its class. The Z may no longer be Nissan's flagship sports car, but the 370Z offers almost all the kick of a GT-R - at half the price.