The new Nissan GT-R arrived in South Africa just in time for the 2016 Festival of Motoring. The new model offers a range of styling, mechanical, luxury and performance upgrades that makes it a more accomplished everyday supercar, with a major improvement in its everyday driveability and more power on tap at mid- and high engine speeds.
In terms of styling the GT-R has received a new bonnet, bumpers, grille and side sills along with new 20 inch forged alloy wheels.
The 2017 GT-R features the most comprehensive styling upgrades to date, with all features offering a performance benefit as well.
Viewed from the front, the new GT-R is fitted with a wider, deeper V-motion grille with new matte chrome trim and a redesigned mesh grille pattern. Apart from the more aggressive look, this new design improves air flow to the engine for enhanced cooling.
The grille is fitted between a new front bumper and redesigned bonnet. The bonnet has deeper character lines, which have been designed to work in unison with the new front bumper and bottom lip and the wider side sills for improved air flow and greater stability at very high speeds.
Rounding off the new design is a new rear bumper with functional air vents. This new bumper also aids high-speed air flow for improved drag on the rear wing and greater downforce at high speeds and on the track. The GT-R’s drag coefficient remains a low 0.26.
The 2017 GT-R features a brand new interior, replete with hand-selected nappa leather and real carbon fibre.
The dashboard has been redesigned to be more elegant and simple, with the number of buttons in view of the driver reduced from 27 to 11. This was made possible by moving many of the control functions to the new, larger 8 inch capacitive touch screen with Nissan’s proprietary Display Command system.
The dashboard itself is upholstered in a large, single piece of hand-selected soft nappa leather. The slight increase in weight of this leather cladding is more than offset by a new type of cushioning material, which is lighter than the material previously used.
The new GT-R now features steering wheel mounted paddle shifts for the dual-clutch gearbox. The new set-up allows for easier mid-turn gearshifts. Both the gear shift paddles and air vent controls have been re-engineered for a more positive tactile feel.
The seats are also upholstered in nappa leather and feature a new carbon fibre chassis for an additional weight reduction, while new sound dampening and an acoustic glass windshield keep unwanted road and wind noise from the cabin.
The hand-built VR38DETT V6 engine remains the heart of the 2017 R35, but it has been further refined and improved for this model.
The engine benefits from greater boost from the turbo chargers, which are similar to those featured in the GT-R GT3 racing car. It also receives individualised timing control on each cylinder for more power and torque and significantly improved engine performance in the mid- and high-rev ranges.
The VR38DETT torque delivery now peaks at 632 Nm (up from 628 Nm) at a wider band from 3 300 rpm to 5 800 rpm. Kilowatt has increased from 397 kW to 408 kW at 6 800 rpm.
A key ingredient in the 2017 GT-R’s blistering 0-100 km/h run is its launch control system and an improved gearbox. The six-speed dual clutch automatically actuated gearbox remains fitted above the rear axle and is connected to the engine with a carbon fibre shaft, but the shifting has been refined to be smoother and less audible.
The GT-R also features a new titanium exhaust system that has been tuned for improved performance and a more appealing mechanical sound. This is enhanced through Nissan’s Active Sound Enhancement system.
The GT-R is equipped with new 20 inch forged alloy wheels that are shod with Dunlop SP Sport 600 DSST ultra-high performance tyres. These tyres were developed in partnership with Nissan for the GT-R and feature RunOnFlat technology.
Upgrades to the suspension and a more rigid suspension structure mean that the GT-R now exhibits even better stability and grip through quick lateral transitions, such as on a fast switchback or hairpin on a race track. Along with these dynamic improvements, the engineers at Nissan have spent considerable resources and time on making the GT-R an even better performer at everyday speeds. In doing so, they have ensured that the 2017 GT-R exhibits none of the quirks that makes other super cars a taxing drive on everyday commutes.
The new GT-R will be available from September at Nissan High Performance Centres. The first consignment of vehicles has already been sold, but order books are open.
Priced at R1 950 000 for Premium Edition, R2 050 000 for the Black Edition the GT-R remains a great value for money supercar.