Where is the Z System Heading?

Someone asked me about why a Z8 would be needed, and what would happen to the Z7 if a Z8 appeared. My assumption is that something like this is Nikon’s intention by 2023:

  • Z4: 24mp entry consumer
  • Z5 II: 24mp consumer
  • Z6 III: 24mp prosumer
  • Z7 III: 45mp prosumer
  • Z8: 80mp pro
  • Z9: 45mp pro

The pro bodies differ from the prosumer bodies by:

  • Mode button, not dial
  • Banks, not U1-U3
  • 10-pin round connector instead of rectangular
  • Small things like PC Sync sockets
  • Better EVF
  • Latest sensors and processors launched here first
  • And of course, additional performance and features

New technologies introduced in the Z8/Z9 cameras would work their way down into the prosumer cameras. The consumer cameras would recycle older technologies. 

I’d also assume that we’d be back to well-differentiated price points, with previous generation cameras getting discounted into the gaps before they stop becoming available. A price point scale for the above models would be something like 999, 1300, 2000, 3000, 4500, 6500 (all US dollars). 

I suppose it is possible for the Z6 and Z7 to merge, say into a 35mp prosumer body, but that doesn’t seem like Nikon’s long-established modus operandi to me. 

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