New Nikon Z Lens Roadmap Revealed

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A new version of the Nikon Z lens roadmap has been revealed, featuring several upcoming lenses for the mirrorless Z mount system that should have Nikon shooters excited.

Note: If you are unfamiliar with the names and terminology used by Nikon to describe their Nikkor Z lenses, I recommend you also read our previous article entitled Nikon and Nikkor Lens Terminology and Abbreviations. You can also check out a complete list of all Nikon Z lenses and their specifications here.

Latest Nikon Z Lens Roadmap

With the most recent version of the Nikon Z lens roadmap, we can now see that Nikon is also working on 600mm and 800mm primes lenses, in the S-Line, of course. These will partner with the new 400mm f/2.8 TC VR that received a development announcement in October 2021.

Interestingly, we can also see a second 400mm lens in the S-Line. This lens will probably be a lightweight 400mm PF lens with an aperture of either f/4 or f/5.6. PF lenses are Nikon’s version of Diffractive Optics lenses, with PF standing for Phase Fresnel. The 500mm PF and 300mm PF lenses from the F-Mount DSLR lense range were very popular, so I’m not surprised to see this on the roadmap.

Coming soon: The Nikkor Z 400mm f/2.8 TC VR.

The most recent update also added a 24mm compact DX prime lens to the roadmap, a compact 28mm FX prime lens, and a 12-24mm DX zoom lens. There’s also an additional 85mm S-Line lens on the roadmap from the previous 2019 roadmap. It would make sense for this to be an f/1.2 lens since there is already a Nikkor Z 85mm f/1.8 S, and I can’t believe they would bother with an f/1.4 lens.

While the inclusion of the 200-600mm lens on the roadmap will please many, photographers should note that this is not a “professional” S-Line lens. The lens’s aperture hasn’t been confirmed, but my guess would be for it to compete directly with the Sony 200-600mm lens and deliver a variable aperture of f/5.6-6.3.

Unreleased Lenses on Nikon Roadmap

To summarize, these are the upcoming, as-yet-unreleased lenses on the roadmap:

  • Nikkor 12-18mm DX
  • Nikkor 24mm DX
  • Nikkor 26mm FX (pancake?)
  • Nikkor 85mm S FX
  • Nikkor 200-600mm VR FX (probably f/5.6-6.3)
  • Nikkor 400mm f/2.8 VR FX (Development announced, but no shipping date yet)
  • Nikkor 600mm f/4 VR FX
  • Nikkor 800mm f/5.6 VR FX
  • Nikkor 400mm (probably a PF version, likely to be f/4 or f/5.6)

Nikon was slow at getting started with their mirrorless system, but with the launch of the Z9 and this impressive roadmap, I think it’s fair to say that those that stayed with Nikon will be feeling much better about this.

What’s Still Missing From The Z Lens Roadmap?

The super-telephoto lens section of the roadmap has been expanded with the latest version, but the timeline suggests these lenses will not come before 2023. Though it’s great to see them working on these things, sports and wildlife photographers will be wishing for these to arrive ASAP for use with the Z9.

I’m surprised there isn’t a 300mm f/2.8 VR in terms of lenses that aren’t even on the roadmap. Usually, 300mm prime lenses are announced in tandem with 400mm lenses, but now we’ve seen the development announcement of the 400mm f/2.8, and the 300mm isn’t even on the pre-2023 roadmap. Curious.

Aside from that, though, I think Nikon has got a great lineup of “regular” lenses. All that is missing are “specialist” lenses such as a fisheye lens and tilt-shift lenses.

Previous Roadmaps

The Z lens roadmap has changed over the years. Some lenses have remained on the roadmap for several iterations, and some have had specifications modified. For example, the 24-105mm S lens finally arrived as a 24-120mm S.

June 2021

Ocotber 2020

October 2019

Photo of author

Dan Carr

Professional photographer based in Yukon, Canada, and founder of Shutter Muse. His editorial work has been featured in publications all over the world, and his commercial clients include brands such as Nike, Apple, Adobe and Red Bull.

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