Nissan GT-R: A Retrospective

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceGodzilla Attacks
The long-anticipated Nissan GT-R first came to America in 2009, although it had been sold in Japan since the late 1960s. To celebrate the introduction of the new 2017 GT-R at the 2016 New York International Auto Show, Nissan brought a collection of this modern-day supercar’s predecessors to represent each generation. These include the 1969 Skyline 2000GT-R, 1973 Skyline 2000GT-R, 1989 Skyline GT-R, 1995 Skyline GT-R and the rare 1999 Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur. Rounding out the collection is the 2013 Nissan GT-R NISMO that lapped the famed Nurburgring Nordschleife race circuit in an impressive 7:08.679.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R
Introduced at the 1968 Tokyo Motor Show, the 1969 GT-R went on sale in the spring of 1969. With a 2.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine that produces 158 horsepower, the 1969 GT-R drew attention for its top speed of 120 mph and ability to cover a quarter mile in 16.1 seconds.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1969 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R
In January of 1973 Nissan introduced this GT-R, based on the fourth-generation Skyline that had launched at the end of 1972. It features the same inline 6-cylinder engine and is one of the first Japanese cars to have front and rear disc brakes. Only 200 units were built before production had to be halted due to stricter emission regulations.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1973 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R
The eighth-generation Skyline (R32) went on sale in May of 1989. A few months later the 1989 Skyline GT-R launched after a 16-year absence from the market. This GT-R’s twin-turbo inline 6-cylinder engine puts out 276 horsepower and utilizes an electronically-controlled 4-wheel drive system and 4-wheel multilink suspension. The R32 GT-R recorded a lap time around the Nurburgring Nordschleife of 8:20.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R
The R33 Skyline GT-R is powered by the same 276-horsepower engine as the previous generation, but with torque increasing to 271 lb-ft at 4400 rpm. With improved body stiffness, better weight distribution and a new 4WD system with an active limited-slip differential, the R33 is faster and more stable than its predecessor. Lap time around the Nurburgring came down to 7:59, and the fact that it was 21 seconds faster than the previous models was grist for the advertising mill in Japan.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur
The R34 GT-R was introduced in January of 1999. This was the final version of the Skyline GT-R to use the twin-turbo inline 6-cylinder engine. Power output is still 276 horsepower, but torque increases again to 289 lb-ft. The R34 is stiffer with improved aerodynamics for even better performance. The M-spec Nur was named for the Nurburgring — only 1,000 of these special editions were built, featuring a specially-tuned engine.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience2013 Nissan GT-R Nismo
On September 30, 2013, this Nissan GT-R NISMO equipped with track options lapped the legendary Nurburgring Nordschleife race circuit in just 7:08.679. The car is stock except for specialized aerodynamics, weight reduction and specially-tuned suspension components. To put the time in perspective, the only production cars that have recorded a faster time are the Porsche 918 Spyder, Lamborghini Aventador LP 750-4 Superveloce and Radical SR8.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience2013 Nissan GT-R Nismo

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience2017 Nissan GT-R
Nissan introduced the updated 2017 GT-R at the 2016 New York Auto Show. In addition to the updated styling there’s a healthy boost in power. The 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 now puts out 565 horsepower and 467 lb-ft of torque — an increase of 20 horsepower over the 2016 model. Engine updates give the GT-R better acceleration in the mid- to high-range rpm, and it will sound better at spool-up via a new titanium exhaust system. With a more rigid body structure and new suspension, the GT-R claims even better cornering abilities — an impressive feat given the outstanding handling of the previous version. The 2017 Nissan GT-R arrives in showrooms later this year.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience2017 Nissan GT-R

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