Nissan has just launched its updated MY11 R35 Nissan GT-R in Australia 20 years to the day since they first launched the original “Godzilla” down-under.
The Nissan GTR R35 is in its third iteration and the godfather of the Nissan GTR Kazutoshi Mizuno has delivered a car with more power, more down force and grip. 2011 also sees Nissan offering only a single version of the GTR with the removal of the base model from the line-up. The 2011 Nissan GTR is similar in spec to the previous R35 Premium edition.
NISSAN GTR OVERVIEW
Carshowroom had the opportunity to drive the latest Nissan GTR on the open road from Melbourne CBD via some country roads down to Victoria’s Phillip Island Raceway. Unlike the MY10 launch in the pouring rain, the MY11 launch was in brilliant sunshine.
Still only 11 handpicked Nissan dealers throughout Australia sell and service the Nissan GTR as the dealers need to have specialized service tools to maintain them. The 2011 model has increased in price to $168,000 plus on roads.
NISSAN GTR ENGINE
The sensational V6 VR38DETT twin-turbo 3.8-litre engine has gained even more power. It now produces 390kW at 6,400rpm up 33kW and peak torque of 612Nm is delivered between 3,200-6000rpm up 24Nm. In a nod back to the orginal GTR the rocket covers are now red.
Nissan claim the all-alloy V6 engine with twin IHI turbochargers can launch from 0 to 100km/h in 3.0 seconds, that is 0.4 seconds quicker than the 2010 Nissan GTR.
To achieve the stated 12 l/100km fuel economy you would need to drive the car very sedately, in our day driving the Nissan GTR we managed to achieve around 17.0 l/100km.
NISSAN GTR INTERIOR
The interior on the 2011 Nissan GTR receives some minor updates. There are new German Recaro designed front seats, which incorporate heated seats The centre consoles still houses the 7-inch LCD touch screen that can give you almost every bit of vehicle telemetry know to man with graphics being designed by the designers of Gran Turismo. The centre console also features a panel made from real carbon fibre material that gives the whole unit a more race car feel.
The 7-inch touch screen houses the smarts for combined auto and sat nav systems. This is driven by a 40gig hard-drive that has 9.3gig of space just for music or 300 CDs in the whole language. You also can connect you iPod via Bluetooth or USB and control it via the steering wheel mounted buttons.
The Nissan GTR is not a two seater sports car – there is a rear seat that could accommodate two adults on a short trip or a couple of kids on longer journeys. The boot is also a reasonable size, with a luggage capacity of 315 litres.
NISSAN GTR EXTERIOR & STYLING
The Nissan GTR is no shrinking violet, it looks like a car that wants to take over the world with its strong muscular on road presence .
At the rear, a new rear bumper and larger rear diffuser help push dirty air away from the car. The other visual change to the rear sees the rear fog lamp move down in to the rear diffuser.
You still get the four round taillights the large rear wing and underbody diffuser, while the beautifully crafted exhausts add to the muscle look.
The theme continues at the front with new 14% larger grille, double rectifier fins helping increase front down force by 10%, LED day running lights.
The changes to the front and rear have helped improve the overall aerodynamic package, reducing the drag coefficient by 0.1Cd to 0.26Cd, the same as Toyota Pruis.
NISSAN GTR ON THE ROAD
The Nissan GTR might be talked down by the older generation of Porsche enthusiasts
as just a playstation car, but I grew up playing playstation and the Nissan GTR is so much more. Jump behind the wheel, plant your right foot on the accelerator and the power pushes you back in to your seat and throws your sunglasses off your head - we kid you not.
The Nissan GTR takes your average Joe Blow and makes him feel like he can drive like Mark Webber. On the Nissan GTR you can adjust the way the transmission shifts, how suspension stiffness is setup and how much traction control the car has (VDC-R Vehicle Dynamic Control). Each of the modes has three settings, R-Mode the sportiest, Normal and Comfort/SAVE for every day driving.
Around town the Nissan GTR has become even easier to drive with addition of a new transmission mode called “SAVE”. This mode tames the GTR by reducing engine torque and changes the transmissions shift points to help the car feel less aggressive and also helps reduce fuel consumption.
Another great addition to the 2011 Nissan GTR is the cars ability to disengage the drive to the front wheels when the car is driving at less than 10km/h and the steering wheel is turned beyond half lock – it makes parking around town so much easier.
NISSAN GTR CHALLENGES
Driving the Nissan GTR for a day we did notice a couple of issues. The lack of vision when doing a head check out of the rear driver side . Reverse parking was a little difficult, the inclusion of a camera would be welcomed.
NISSAN GTR COMPETITION
Priced at $168,000, with four seats and supercar performance the GTR is hard to compare. You could look at Porsche 911 or a Mercedes-Benz SL but you will need some extra dollars. I would also look at the Mercedes Benz E63 and BMW M6 coupe but you miss out on the supercar performance.