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„Maneki-Neko"

It is the mid-90s, Narita airport, Japan, not very tall man with a friendly attitude is heading towards the exit of the airport located only 65 kilometers from the center of Tokyo. Kozo Watanabe doesn't know yet that in a moment Nissan will decide to appoint him as the head of the GTR Skyline R34 project. This cheerful and smiling Japanese in a few years will build an almost living motoring legend, a car that will become an icon in the land of drifting, racing and "powerful tuning", a car whose posters will be hung on the walls in the bedrooms of fans of four wheels around the Word. The Drift roots in Japan date back to the 70's and 80's, it was then that Japanese race drivers started to entertain their fans by overcoming turs in a controlled slip behind the steering wheel of sports machine with rear-wheel drive with the Nissan and Toyota logo on the hood. The problem is that this game finally began to get out of control and move to the streets. More and more often, the inhabitants of small, mountain Japanese villages heard at night the huge motor roaring and horrible tires screeching. It was the beginning of a new trend, frenzy and adrenaline, that began to flow like a river stream around the world.., and the carriers of this power were the Nissan 200SX S13, S14, the Toyota Supra and the Nissan GTR Skyline. Just why are "Sky" and Supra considered to be pearls in the crown of the Japanese car royal family? Just to drift you need power.., a lot of power, and the six-cylinder Supra and Skyline high-speed engines had an advantage over four-cylinder engines because they were a better basis for modification and they could endure makeover of what other cars will literally fall apart in pieces. It turned out that the RB25 engine head installed in series GTR R34 withstands 1000 horsepower.., do you know what it meant for tuners from around the world? A race in the land of power began, in which the only limitations were the American dollars and the fantasy of the owners of these cars. I remember that more or less in 2008, I found the Japanese Nengun website on the network, on which it was possible to order complete sets for the modification of the drive unit. It was enough to enter the store and choose 400, 500, 800 or 1000 horsepower from the shelf. In the hands of a good driver such a car was not to be caught, as the Swedish police have often learned. The illegal races have become the torment of previously quiet and small towns, and the authorities were helpless towards young drivers behind the Nissan GTR steering wheel equipped with an installation of nitrous oxide and turbochargers, that "blow" over 2 bars to the engine intake systems with a power greater than two city buses. The problem was solved when a closed track was built on the suburbs, on which fans of gigantic power could do whatever they liked, not harassed by the already helpless traffic Police. In 2002, Nissan completed the production of the Skyline GTR model, and only pre-manufactured car units traveled around the world, which reached dizzy prices on the secondary market. It was at this time that the 350z model was introduced to the market, but it was not the same anymore.., and the rest? And the rest is Nissan Almera, Almera Tino and my stylistic "favorite" Nissan Tiida, which had an engine with a firepower comparable to winds flying in the pants of grandpa equipped with suspenders, going on a trip to the plot. The GTR era is over, but fortunately not forever. During the Skyline's absence, the leaders of the race were Germans, who were not disturbed by anyone, boasting of Porsche, BMW, Audi or Mercedes performance, making the best lap times on a race tracks.

 

Nissan GTR Skyline
23 September 2019

Rumours about the birth of the new GTR circulated around the year 2003 when Carlos Ghosn announced that the new model of the iconic car will be made.., but it was not. Prototypes appeared at car shows and further declarations, but not much more... In 2007, the latest Nissan GTR R35 was officially presented (the car went on sale in 2008) in order to knock out rivals on the Nurnburgring track in 2013. It was announced that Skyline made the lap time 7:08.679 receiving the title of the fastest sports Coupe in the world. I've waited a long time for this moment and today I am going to describe this magical car for you. The appearance of this car is nothing like Italian super beauty. GTR is massive, muscular, coarse and huge. All body elements have been designed for aerodynamics. I did not notice any unnecessary details that would only enjoy watching. A reference to the past is the characteristic rear round lights, giant spoiler and radiator grille with the inscription GTR, while the rest is a completely new car. The interior of this Nissan was created for the driver, ergonomics was put on. The materials used for individual cockpit elements are of good quality, but I think that they don’t knock the socks off, because it was not the focus when designing Skyline. Just do not expect a luxury chamber dripping with luxury. The Recaro sports seats are comfortable, but they do not have side support adjustment, which means that only slim people will feel comfortable. The driver and passenger have plenty of space in front what the person traveling in the back can envy. The problem is not space for legs, but the head! Sitting at the back, unfortunately, I rested my "skull" on the glass which was neither pleasant nor safe. Summarizing; the interior is simple, solidly made, this car is supposed to ride, not shine, and the cockpit literally confirms us in this belief. On the center console there is a panel with buttons, with the help of which we can control the Bose audio system and air conditioning. Below there are three switches used for changing the driving modes, and thus the characteristics of the suspension, transmission/the engine and traction control. A great solution is a touch screen integrated into the cockpit, having a lot of functions, and basically information that the computer tells us while driving. We do not really need to set up anything in this car, of course there is Bluetooth, navigation and audio but that’s basically enough what you can play with. From the extras we have different display colors to choose from, photo browser, possibility to view the oil level in the engine and setting a reminder about the upcoming service or oil filter replacement. The real information show begins after clicking the "function" button, which is located on the left side of the monitor. The amount of information our GTR gives us during the trip is impressive and I think it's hard to comprehend everything when driving. By clicking 1 on the screen you will see the current boost pressure, the temperature of the oil in the engine and the gearbox. Number 2 indicates the temperature of the coolant, oil in the gearbox and the engine, the oil pressure in the gearbox, speed and range to be traveled in kilometers. Under number 3, the torque distribution for the individual axles and the percentage throttle opening indicator will be displayed. Number 4 is the angle of the steering wheel deflection and the percentage braking force indicator. Under the letter A we can find the G overload indicator during the acceleration, while under B we find what forces act on us during braking. Of course there is also the letter C, after pressing which we will look at the G-Force during cornering. The remaining letters D, E and F define us accordingly; the gear we are moving along with the fuel efficiency indicator, the fuel combustion graph and stopwatch. Thanks to the multifunctional steering wheel, we can control the radio and cruise control without taking our hands off. A legend has been circulating for years that if the traction control is disabled by the user, the warranty for the car is lost. I decided to get deeper into this subject and I already answer what I found out. It is not entirely true that if ESP is turned off we will lose the warranty. If we bury ourselves in a snowdrift, we can disconnect the traction control as much as possible and absolutely nothing will happen. However, if we turn ESP off and the computer registers extreme driving, then we can actually lose the warranty, but it is not certain. All we have to do is carry out an additional review at a specialist Nissan authorized service center (which supports the GTR model) and our warranty will be maintained.

 

"Birth of the King"

Before I got behind the wheel of this car, I called my friend who is a rally driver and asked what he thinks about the Nissan GTR R35. He replied briefly, "I won't tell you about him, the car is marvelous you'll see it yourself".., and I saw. Skyline was equipped with V6 with a capacity of 3.8 liters, charged with two turbochargers. All the power and torque is transferred to all four wheels via a six-speed dual clutch automatic transmission. The power unit of this car is standard with 550 horses, while my copy underwent treatment which added it only 50 horses for good measure. The manufacturer says that the car accelerates in 2.8s to the first hundred and accelerates to over 330 kilometers per hour. After pressing the Start button, there was the sound of thousands of parts working together, and for a moment I began to wonder if everything is OK with this car, but it was OK, simply GTR lives its own life and we have to get used to it. Allegedly, the versions after 2017 have been improved in some details, thanks to which the work of the engine and gearbox improved. I made the first kilometers calmly using the Save drive settings and the Comfort suspension. It's tough, stiff and sporty, and the steering is quite heavy but very precise. The suspension is reluctant to choose bums but we have an amazing sense of stability on the road. The gearbox in Save mode works quite gently and changes gears very quickly upwards. The engine response to pressing the gas pedal is quite sluggish. During a quiet drive, the car reminds me of a little dormant autobot, which from time to time reveals its presence by some strange sound from the drive system, which is not a sign of the failure but rather the work of many precisely matched and cooperating elements. I associate the sound of exhaust with a high-rev in-line engine and is constant regardless of the driving mode. The only thing I missed was the tire temperature indicator, but well, you can't have everything. When the oil in the engine and transmission was already sufficiently heated I decided to change the characteristics of the transmission/engine, suspension and ESP by switching them to R mode. I put my foot down as hard as I could and immediately felt that the car was starting to make wavy lines on the road trying to catch traction. When the huge Bridgestone tires got along with the surface I experienced a terrible impact and immediately the car pulled forward, roaring like a Japanese grinder. The gear shifting takes place precisely and quickly, and the speedometer hand shows some huge values after a while. Finally, I began to wonder if the 310 km/h I reached on the highway in Germany is not too much despite the fact that there were no speed limits on this section of the road… Up to a speed of about 250 kilometers per hour, I did not feel major vibrations, instability or uncertain steering system behavior. GTR holds on like welded and simply "runs" ahead as if there were no physical laws. Only from about 280 km/h we start to feel the speed and literally. At about 300 kilometers per hour, I heard the car sometimes breaks the air and I gave up with the last common sense.., but the loud, bursting engine sound causes such a huge adrenaline rush that one would like to go all out.., that is, up to over 330 kilometers per hour. The combustion during such fun is huge and exceeds 30 liters of 100 RON gasoline /100km. During mixed driving with a predominance of calm ride GTR needs about 17 ltr/100km. When I slowed down considerably, I decided to overcome a few sharper bends and I admit that I haven't even come close to the limits of this sporting "cat". The traction control intervened several times, and I felt Nissan start sliding abruptly. But at my request. I was only afraid that with this traction it might be something like that; holding, holding, wow keeps holding.., but if it lets go, we will go through an accelerated drifting course for advanced.., so I preferred not to try. At a speed of about 200 km/h per hour a civilian competitor was in my lane and I was forced to brake hard. My car slowed down as if nothing had happened, it looked more like just getting to the traffic lights than a sharp brake. In other words, in a civilian car we would be full of fear and we could smell a bouquet of smells from our braking system (and not only), but not here. I found only one drawback of this car, namely I did not want to get out of it. As a child, I started thinking about long journeys behind the wheel of this machine.

Would I buy a Nissan GTR R35? My dear, I fell in love and this car jumped onto the absolute top 1 of my toy list. If whenever I will get carried away and I can afford to buy a sports car, it will be the Skyline. This engine roar, brutal power, legend and this is something that makes me think about this car every day for a while ... ... it's stupid, it's just a machine.., and yet? However, there is an invisible force that attracts me and does not let me forget about this car.., that's the way Nissan GTR Skyline R35 is. The price starting from 130,000 Euro is not excessive considering that in return we will get one of the best sports cars in the world. If we are thinking about buying Nismo, then we better prepare almost 250,000 Euro.

 

Artur Rojewski

"This is it!"

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Attention! This site is for information purposes only, does not promote any driving style and is not of a training nature. All cars covered by the descriptions and photos posted on this site are used in accordance with traffic regulations and with the highest security measures in order not to cause any damage to road users. The author of the blog is not responsible for other road users who in a manner inconsistent with traffic regulations or with the exposure to the health and life of others, will use vehicles on public roads and outside them.