Back in July 2003, ‘Holiday Auto’ magazine (Japan) reported the existence of a 1:5th scale clay model of the Next GT-R in which various aerodynamic aids and styling were being trialed… then we heard nothing. Since then a myriad of CG images – by GT-R fans and Nissan alike – have been conjured up, all original designs but all based roughly on the 2001 Tokyo Motor Show Nissan GT-R Concept.
Our source expects the final design renderings to be released by Nissan Design Europe which goes against previous rumors that Nissan Design America would play a part. From now on, NDE will be taking into consideration just how much their design will limit mass production, so there’s a good chance minor details will be changed from the 2005 ‘Concept’ to be shown at this years Tokyo Motor Show. That said, the final shape of the car is complete as is illustrated below:
The above image shows a front bumper with large openings which form one large opening with the grille included. There’s a large diffuser incorporated in the rear bumper too, so both these parts form the basis of the advanced underbody aerodynamics package. Seeing the design of these two major parts of the car have been decided, we can assume that the wheelbase and overall body size have been made final. The main focus of the 2005 Concept design has been to differentiate the GT-R from the regular (and yet to be released) V36 Skyline range. This is evident by the crease line around the waist of the car and details around the headlights and aft of the front wheel arches. The final design is completely original, sharing no major panels with the Skyline. That’s right, the next GT-R has completely shed any links to the ‘Skyline GT-R’ of old. Even though cosmetic details of the next GT-R mirror previous GT-R’s (such as the four round tail lights), it will be very different from any Skyline either current or past.
Lets now have a look at the overall dimensions. The entire length of the next GT-R will be shorter than the R34 (4600mm) coming in at about 4500mm. Then the width! Our informer has jokingly said that the next GT-R will look like a Choro-Q! (a miniature toy car with ‘squashed’ proportions) We can expect the GT-R to be about 1900 to 2000mm wide, with a wheelbase of 2700m giving the GT-R a ‘forward cabin – short front overhang’ look, with large rear fenders reminiscent of the Porsche 911 Turbo used to be back in the late 1970’s. As for other cosmetic changes, there has been talk that Nissan will ‘remake’ the head lights and rear combination lights once again…
Moving on to the engine and driveline, development is really starting to move along. As has been reported on before, the next GT-R will use a 3.2L V6 motor-assist twin turbo engine rated at 480ps powering the rear wheels through a traditional RWD transaxle with the front wheels powered by electric motors controlled by an advanced 4WD controller even more sophisticated than the last version of Nissans ‘ATESSA’… but it seems like something new has happened?
The next GT-R will be lighter than the Fairlady Z/350Z., with the use of carbon and aluminum throughout the car, the next GT-R is destined to weigh in less than the Fairlady Z’s 1450kg. This should put any concerns about the GT-R being heavier due to the incredible amount of new systems and technology that’s slated to be included in the final package.
Back in October last year, the next GT-R prototype was spotted at the Nurburgring old course and subsequently appeared on the cover of just about every car magazine around the world. The Nurburgring prototype completed only a single lap of the old course and was sporting a clever Infinti G35 disguise. The single lap was intended to test mechanicals, but the main focus was on testing a ‘semi-wet sump’ system which is much more practical than the original dry sump system that was planned. So the final decision is a semi-wet sump and we’ll update the details of this as soon as more information arises.
It’s GT-R lore now that the 1989 – 94 BNR32 GT-R sold at a loss for about 5,000,000 yen, when in actual fact it cost 12,000,000 yen to produce, and Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn has vowed that that situation will never occur again. In fact, Ghosn has said to be pushing for a higher quality vehicle than the next GT-R’s arch rival, the Porsche 911 Turbo. The Porsche 911 Turbo is still the car Nissan want to beat and it seems Ghosn wants to do it better at two thirds the price… But we can rest assured that the next GT-R won’t put Nissan into the red.
Based on Getrag components, Nissan have developed their own sequential 7-speed gearbox for use in the next GT-R. More on this in our next update.
The next GT-R will be sold as ‘Infiniti GT-R’ in markets outside Japan, as that model name has already been registered in Europe, Australia and the USA, and Infiniti GT-R has been registered in Japan too! Although it’s difficult to imagine the final product, we can’t see why there would be any difference at all between the domestic Japanese GT-R and the export version. The last question on everyone’s lips is: Will the GT-R show up as an Infiniti, completely separate from the Skyline?
Nissan will keep production costs of the next GT-R to a minimum by ‘aggressively cutting costs’, which means parts sharing to you and me. In fact, the 7-speed sequential gearbox will be adapted to an all new RWD car which will be the next big surprise after the GT-R is released. As for marketing and final minor details of the next GT-R, Carlos Ghosn is doing his best to keep everything very secret as he has all but claimed the next GT-R project as his own. But all will be disclosed at the Tokyo Motor Show come October.
Text: Justin Karow