The Nissan 350Z is one of the most iconic sports cars of the 2000s, revered for its natural aspirated VQ35 V6 engine and excellent handling dynamics. But even legends can use a boost. That's where superchargers come in - by forcing extra compressed air into the engine, superchargers can increase your 350Z's horsepower and torque dramatically. From budget-friendly kits to +500 horsepower setups, supercharging can take your 350Z's performance to the next level.
In this in-depth blog post, we'll cover everything you need to know about supercharging your 350Z:
Whether you're looking to add some bolt-on power for the street or push your Z to its limits at the track, supercharging can get you there. Let's dive in!
When it comes to forced induction for the Nissan 350Z, supercharger kits are a popular option that can add substantial power gains over stock. Superchargers provide instant throttle response and linear power delivery throughout the RPM range. Several reputable manufacturers offer complete supercharger systems engineered specifically for the 350Z's VQ35 engine. We've reviewed some of the top supercharger kits on the market to help you choose the right system for your needs and budget.
The A2A Lyte V2 Supercharger Kit from Soho Motorsports is one of the best supercharger kits for your 350Z available today, utilizing a variety of quality components to offer a reliable increase in power. The new V2 version includes a more efficient Garrett intercooler core, delivering a nearly 50% reduction in intake air temperatures at wide-open throttle compared to the previous core, despite having the same dimensions. This allows for cooler, denser air to enter the engine and enables more power to be made reliably.
The Soho Motorsports A2A Lyte V2 Supercharger Kit uses the proven Vortech V3-SI supercharger, capable of up to 775 horsepower. The A2A Lyte V2 Kit is a prime example of Soho's continued development demonstrating their commitment to refining this system for maximum performance and ensuring that Nissan 350Z owners have another excellent supercharger kit option to choose from.
The Stillen Supercharger Kit for the 350Z VQ35HR engine took over a year to develop and incorporates some unique design elements. Stillen Supercharger Kit rates this system as capable of over 450 horsepower in stock configuration, with the potential for bigger power gains with supporting modifications. One notable feature is the air-to-water intercooler integrated into the intake manifold, rather than mounted externally. The unique Stillen SC intake allows for effective cooling of the charged air before it enters the cylinders. Stillen's intake manifold redesign also increases runner length for additional torque production.
The Stillen Supercharger Kit includes a Vortech V3 supercharger with a custom UPRev Tune handling the rest of the motor's functions. With its innovative design and potent power output, the Stillen Supercharger Kit represents Stillen’s pursuit of no-compromise performance upgrades for the VQ35HR, giving 350Z drivers another top-tier option to consider.
Leveraging experience with previous Vortech installations on VQ engines, Z1 Motorsports is proud to off the Z1 Motorsports Complete Vortech Supercharger Kit with several upgrades that make it one of the best on the market. The Z1 Motorsports Complete Vortech Supercharger Kit includes upgraded components that work seamlessly together to provide reliable power gains while saving you soon money as compared to sourcing parts separately to equal the same kit. At the core is a Vortech V3 Si supercharger, chosen for its excellent efficiency and impressive power output.
To support the added power, the Z1 Motorsports Complete Vortech Supercharger Kit includes a smaller crank pulley, higher-flowing Z1 fuel injectors, ECU tuning, and an upgraded Walbro 255 lph fuel pump. While not included in the supercharger kit, Z1 stresses the importance of adding an improved oil cooler and radiator to keep temperatures in check for both street and track-driven Z33s. Backed by Z1 Motorsports' tuning expertise and use of proven components, the Z1 Motorsports Complete Vortech Supercharger Kit is a compelling option for 350Z owners seeking a simple, bolt-on power adder from a respected aftermarket company.
The HKS GT Supercharger Pro Kit V2 is one of the few supercharger kits for the Nissan 350Z designed to reliably support over 500hp on the stock VQ35DE engine. It uses HKS's GTS8555 supercharger which provides 30% more airflow versus their previous GT7040 model. The GTS8555 is compact yet high-flowing for instant boost response across the RPM range. Upgrades include doubling the intercooler size for increased cooling capacity, and 35% larger intake piping over Version 1 for reduced restriction. These improvements create substantial gains in both torque and horsepower throughout the powerband.
With its premium pedigree and uncompromising performance, the HKS GT Supercharger Pro Kit V2 expands the possibilities for high-horsepower VQ35DE builds, offering elite-level engineering for 350Z enthusiasts looking for a significant bump in power. While expensive, it represents the pinnacle of supercharger systems for this engine and is a fantastic forced induction choice for first-generation 350Zs with the VQ35DE engine
A supercharger is essentially an air pump that increases the air density entering the engine. By cramming more air into the cylinders, you can burn more fuel, increase combustion pressure, and produce more power.
Superchargers come in three primary designs -
Compared to turbochargers which harness exhaust gases, superchargers provide instant throttle response. They allow the 350Z to make substantially more power while maintaining the awesome VQ exhaust note that owners love.
For 350Z owners looking for significant power gains, supercharging is a proven way to achieve this reliably. Now let's look at important factors to consider when choosing a kit.
Before deciding on a supercharger, consider your goals, compatibility, difficulty of installation, and budget.
Are you building a dedicated track monster with big power numbers as the primary goal? Or do you simply want some moderate bolt-on power gains for improved street performance? Realistically setting power goals is crucial, as it determines factors like the power rating and durability needs for the supercharger system. More modest street setups can utilize simple centrifugal blowers and economical supporting mods. Hardcore builds designed for forced induction often incorporate strengthened engine internals, upgraded fuel systems, and different supercharger pulleys to reach HP levels well over 600hp.
It's absolutely vital to select a supercharger kit specifically engineered for your 350Z's engine. Many kits are only compatible with certain motor variants like the DE or HR engines. Choosing the wrong kit that doesn't properly fit key components can lead to major issues from check engine lights to mechanical breakdowns. Always verify full compatibility upfront.
Supercharger kits range from true "bolt-on" systems needing no custom fabrication to complex projects requiring custom intake manifolds, intercooler piping, and fuel system upgrades. Factor in your own mechanical skills and capabilities, or budget for professional shop installation if undertaking the work yourself isn't realistic. Basic bolt-on kits can usually be handled by any competent DIYer but tuning and fabrication skills may be needed for more involved setups.
For the 350Z, basic centrifugal supercharger kits can be found starting at around $7,000. But costs scale up quickly when adding more boost, bigger intercoolers, fuel system upgrades, and custom tuning. Be realistic when budgeting and understand what is included vs. optional upgrades with any kit.
While experienced DIYers may be able to install a supercharger kit themselves, the complexity involved makes professional installation recommended. Expect labor costs of $1,500 or more for proper tuning and fabrication work.
Proper maintenance is critical for the longevity of your supercharger. Follow the manufacturer's directions for fluid and belt changes (typically once a year). Watch for signs of belt slippage or contact issues which can destroy a supercharger quickly. Lastly, make sure your ECU is tuned to account for the extra airflow. Failure to properly tune the engine can cause major issues over time.
Adding a supercharger is one of the most effective ways to maximize the performance potential of the Nissan 350Z. While options range from entry-level kits to high-end custom systems, the key is finding the right balance of power gains, compatibility, ease of installation, and budget for your specific goals and situation. With the right supercharger installed on your VQ35, your Z will take on an entirely new level of acceleration, power, and driving excitement.
Thank you for reading our deep dive into the world of 350Z supercharger kits. We hope you found it helpful. Be sure to check out our other in-depth 350Z articles comparing air intakes, exhausts, exhaust headers, turbo kits, and other performance mods to build your dream Z! Our goal is to provide owners with the ultimate resource for boosting their Nissan 350Z's performance with one performance guide at a time!
With proper tuning and engine management, superchargers are safe and reliable. Without the proper tune, engine damage can occur over time.
Turbos use exhaust gases to spin a compressor, while superchargers are belt-driven off the crankshaft.
It depends on the specific kit and supporting mods, but expect gains of 60-150 hp over stock or more.
Fluid changes and belt replacement on a yearly schedule are highly recommended. Follow the manufacturer's service schedule to ensure a long service life for your supercharger.
For 350Z enthusiasts looking for big power gains, supercharging delivers excellent performance and acceleration when properly installed and tuned.