Nissan GT-R is First Produced
The Nissan GT-R is a sports car created by Nissan, released in Japan on December 6th, 2007, the United States on July 7, 2008, and the rest of the world in March of 2009.
Between 1969 and 1974, and again between 1989 and 2002, Nissan produced a high performance version of its Skyline range called the Nissan Skyline GT-R. This car proved to be iconic for Nissan and achieved much fame and success on road and track. The Nissan GT-R, although no longer carrying the "Skyline" badge, has heritage in the Nissan Skyline GT-R. Like the Skyline GT-Rs R32 through R34, the Nissan GT-R is all-wheel drive with a twin-turbo 6 cylinder engine; however, the evolutionary, incremental changes between Skyline models R32 through R34 have been done away with. The four-wheel-steering HICAS system has been removed, and the former straight-6 RB26DETT engine has been replaced with a new V6 VR38DETT. Because of the GT-R's heritage, the chassis code for the all-new version has been called CBA-R35, or 'R35' for short, carrying on the naming trend from previous Skyline GT-R generations. The GT-R has also retained its Skyline predecessor's nickname Godzilla.
Two concept vehicles were displayed at motor shows prior to the unveiling of the production model. The first concept was shown at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2001 to preview what a 21st century GT-R would look like. At the 2005 Tokyo Motor Show, Nissan unveiled a redesigned concept, the GT-R Proto, stating that the production GT-R would be 80-90% based on this concept.
The production version of the GT-R debuted at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show, launching in the Japanese market on December 6, 2007. The U.S. official launch was 7 months later on July 07, 2008. Universal Nissan in Los Angeles provided a customer with the delivery of a new GT-R, fresh from the production line at 12:01 a.m., on July 7, 2008. The Canadian launch was also in July 2008. Europe became the third consumer market, where it launched in March 2009. The large disparity in initial marketing between these regional releases is due to Nissan having to build GT-R performance centers where the car is serviced. Also the engine and rear-mounted dual-clutch gearbox are built by hand, thus limiting production to around 1000 cars a month.
The Nissan GT-R is powered by the VR38DETT engine, a 3,799 cc (3.8 L; 231.8 cu in) DOHC V6. Two parallel Ishikawajima-Harima Heavy Industries (IHI) turbochargers provide forced induction. Production vehicles produce a manufacturer-claimed engine output of 474 bhp (353 kW) at 6400 rpm and 434 lb·ft (588 N·m) at 3200-5200 rpm. According to independent dynamometer tests, the GT-R produces 416 hp (310 kW) to 475 hp (354 kW) and 414 lb·ft (561 N·m) to 457 lb·ft (620 N·m) at the wheels. The engine also meets California Air Resources Board Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) standards. A curb weight of 1,730 kg (3,800 lb) or 1,736 kg (3,830 lb) with side curtain airbags is achieved using a jig welded steel chassis with aluminum used for the hood, trunk, and doors. A rear mounted six-speed BorgWarner dual clutch semi-automatic transmission is used in conjunction with the ATTESA E-TS system to provide power to all four wheels and along with Nissan's Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC-R) aids in stability. Three shift modes can also be selected for various conditions. The GT-R has a drag coefficient of 0.27.
The Nissan Skyline GT-R is an iconic Japanese granturismo launched more than 15 years ago. Also known as "Godzilla" it is rated as providing performance and handling equal or superior to that of European icons like the Porsche 911 and the Ferrari 360 Modena, at a considerably lower price. Back home the Skyline GTR humiliated its competitors such as the Honda NSX, Toyota Supra, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, Subaru Impreza WRX STi, and Mazda RX-7 until the 1999 production finish. In 2007 the “Godzilla” is coming back!
Nissan has unveiled at the 2005 Tokyo Motor Show the GT-R Proto Concept, that gives an impression of what the new GT-R will look like when it will go on sale globally in 2007. The new GT-R will not derive from a sedan, it will receive its own specific body style. It is therefore probable, that recent rumors of the GT-R losing the “Skyline” part of its name will come true.
Until now, Nissan has not released technical specifications of the production model, but speculation among the media suggests that the new granturismo will carry over the ATTESA all-wheel-drive and HICAS all-wheel-steering systems of the previous Skyline GT-Rs. Both of these systems are nowadays on “less hard-core” Skyline / Infiniti G35 variants, and will most likely make it to the top-version, as well. It is also expected that the 2007 GT-R will be powered by a turbo-version of Nissan’s ubiquitous VQ35 engine-series, or a variant of the Infiniti Q45’s VK45 engine. As the GT-R has to compete with the best sports-cars globally, power-levels are expected to reach in excess of 450 hp.
As a test mule Nissan used an Infiniti G35 body-camouflage substantially modified to fit huge tires, and with a big front air-dam. The final design, as said, will be much more like the Nissan GT-R Proto concept car. The Infinity G35 Coupe was named the Skyline in Japan since 2001, but had never received an high-performance engine/drive-train and therefore never lived up to the R34 Skyline GT-R supercar status.
There have been recorded proofs of registered trademarks for the next Nissan GT-R in Japan, Australia, Europe, and Canada as well as the U.S. (the car will be sold in both right- and left-hand drive versions). It will have to overcome many new, stringent emissions laws all over the world.
Estoril, Portugal- Nissan’s GT-R super sport car stunned the world upon it’s arrival. Former generations have never been imported in North America and in Europe, only in the U.K. But now, the world seems to be ready to embrace the new GT-R.
Last fall, when Nissan unveiled the fifth generation Skyline GT-R at the 2007 Tokyo Auto Show, and a month later in Los Angeles, the omens were good. The presentation, by Renault Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn himself, drew a slew of journalists and corporate representatives of most of all manufacturers present. And better still, the stunning sports car immediately generated praise and greed.
With the new generation, Nissan does not use the Skyline badge anymore. Now it is only the letter combination that stirs the automotive crowds. The hype may have been also caused by the immense popularity of Sony’s PlaySation Gran Turismo.
Nissan made sure that the PlayStation developers would have all information necessary to make the cars in the GT games realistic. In return, the game producers helped Nissan to design the GT-R’s display screens in the dashboard.
In the meantime, the GT-R is already so hot, that the production for several European countries, like my own country, The Netherlands, has been sold out for 2008.and 2009.
I was in Portugal for the Nissan 360 event, where the company’s future plans were presented and where we could also have a super short stint with the GT-R of only 5 laps on the Estoril race track.
Who would not burst with anxiety, when you could drive as one of the very first with the GT-R and its 480 hp strong 3.8-liter twin-turbo V-6? I was, especially since Nissan announced earlier that the GT-R set a time of 7 minutes 29 seconds at the famous Nürburgring race track, the absolute lap record for a production car. And consequently, faster than the bench mark in the segment, the Porsche 911 Turbo.
The completely new PM (Premium Mid-ship) platform enabled Nissan the use of a world’s first independent rear transaxle all-wheel drive system. It places the transmission, transfer case and final drive at the rear of the vehicle, optimizing the weight distribution. Nissan calls it’s four-wheel drive system ATTESA E-TS (Advanced Total Traction Engineering System for All-Electronic Torque Split). It is a system that divides engine torque (maximum 430 lb.-ft) from 50/50 per cent front/rear to 2/98 per cent front/rear.
In the pouring rain on the slippery asphalt of the Estoril track, the GT-R immediately proved the advantages of its advanced technology. Under those awfully bad circumstances the grip is fantastic and acceleration is phenomenal. You hardly notice that you are shifting the 6-speed gearbox with the peddles on the steering wheel: Nissan says it only takes the transmission 0.2 seconds to do so.
When the car starts sliding, you easily correct it. Excuse me, it is hardly noticeable, but it corrects itself and give you a little room to also do something, thus making you think that you are a super driver…
ESP has three modes, so that you can adjust to your likings, or capabilities. The weather was too bad to measure acceleration from 0-60 mph, but Nissan promises the GT-R will only need 3.5 seconds and reaches a top speed of 192.6 mph. Anyway, I am looking forward to the introduction event of the GT-R, that will probably be organised in September.