Godzilla conquers the track.
The Nissan GT-R is known for being a giant-killer. Performance-wise, it matches up shockingly well against the supercar elite. The drag strip? GT-R’s are known to be heavily modified, well over 1,000 horsepower, and dominate. But, what is it like to take a GT-R on the track? Winding Road Magazine takes you through a ridealong at Willow Springs.
Consider this a warning. Not only is it fast, but it’s also a bumpy ride. Hold onto your butts.
While “Nismo” may imply a racing version of the model, the latest GT-R Nismo is actually a more forgiving, more compliant vehicle. Sometimes, the stiffest suspension ever doesn’t always slice off extra tenths of a second. Sometimes, a little added weight doesn’t affect track time at all. Increased sound deadening and a Bose noise-canceling feature help make the GT-R Nismo become a bit more of a casual car, as opposed to a hardcore racer.
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However, the racing spirit remains, with a large bump in horsepower, knocking on the door of 600. The suspension was completely revised with new front links for altered caster settings from the original, and Track, Race, and Race Plus models have been reprogrammed to put on a sharper edge to the driving experience. Downforce was increased to 220 pounds at 186 miles per hour, and revised aero also allows for an ultra-low 0.26 coefficient of drag.
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The latest GT-R Nismo provides the best of all worlds. It is on a different level when it comes to daily driving, but allows for greater reaction to a driver’s inputs with the increased power, revised suspension, and aerodynamics.