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Nissan gives GT-R Nismo an almighty price hike

GT-R Nismo ups the performance ante again – but Nissan increases its cost to match

30 Sep 2019

NISSAN Australia has sensationally increased pricing by $79,000 for its track-focused GT-R Nismo supercar flagship, which has returned to showrooms in updated form priced from $378,000 plus on-road costs.


Now firmly in the same territory as Italian exotica including the Lamborghini Huracan LP580-2 coupe ($378,900) and Ferrari Portofino convertible ($398,888) as well as Japan’s Honda NSX Premium coupe ($420,000), the GT-R Nismo attempts to compensate buyers for the extra charge with a range of aerodynamic, handling and braking enhancements.


Carbon-fibre is used for the GT-R Nismo’s bonnet, front fenders and roof, helping to reduce its weight by 10.5kg over the ‘regular’ GT-R while also increasing downforce and optimising aerodynamics.


The front fenders themselves now resemble those of the GT-R GT3 racecar, with their scalloped vents helping to funnel hot air away from the engine bay and therefore providing extra downforce onto the front tyres without increasing drag.


Nonetheless, the GT3 influence is also felt in the engine bay, where the GT-R Nismo sports a new pair of turbochargers taken from the current racecar, which feature a 10-vane turbine wheel (one less than before).


The reshaped vanes are 0.3mm thinner than that of the previous model, accounting for a 14.5 per cent reduction in mass and therefore decreasing inertia by 24 per cent, resulting in improved responsiveness.


While losing a vane would normally reduce the flow rate, a backplate has been added to prevent exhaust gases from flowing behind the turbine blades, which improves flow efficiency.


Despite these upgrades, the GT-R Nismo’s 3.8-litre V6 still produces 441kW of power at 6800rpm and 652Nm of torque from 3600-5600rpm.


The GT-R Nismo’s six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission has also been given a pull-through, with its ‘R’ mode now shifting gears more aggressively and intuitively thanks to a software recalibration.


The Japanese brand claims the new adaptive shift control (ASC) algorithm “selects the best gear for any driving scenario and can especially be felt during braking and approach into a corner, where the driveline feels more precise with faster downshift reactions to help reduce understeer on entry”.


Both the steering and suspension set-ups have been retuned, with the former having improved in linearity and precision, while the latter has optimised cornering stability alongside enhanced yaw-rate responsiveness and a smoother ride.


The latter is partly enabled by the retuning of the GT-R Nismo’s Bilstein DampTronic shocks, which are 20 and five per cent softer in rebound and compression respectively in order to compensate near-30kg overall weight reduction.


As before, the GT-R Nismo rolls on a set of 20-inch Rays alloy wheels, although these rims now have an exclusive nine-spoke design that is a combined 100g lighter than before and marked by a diamond-cut white-and-red ‘Nismo’ logo.


The redesigned Dunlop tyres fitted to all four corners feature a new rubbed compound that Nissan claims boosts grip by seven per cent, while the tread pattern has one less groove up front, which increases the contact patch by 11 per cent alongside the slightly rounder shoulder shape that comes into play during hard cornering, where force is up five per cent.


Tucked behind is a new braking package supplied by Brembo. Carbon-ceramic discs measure 410mm up front and 390mm at the rear, clamped by six- and four-piston callipers coated in heat-resistant yellow paint respectively.


Teamed with high-friction pads, this upgrade reduces unsprung mass by 16.3kg while improving the responsiveness and progressiveness of the brake pedal. Rotor cooling has also been optimised by altering the angle of the front air guides towards their centres.


Standard equipment in the GT-R Nismo otherwise includes an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, satellite navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, a reversing camera and front and rear parking sensors.


“The Nissan GT-R Nismo offers unparalleled performance that is exhilarating to experience as soon as the drive begins,” said Nissan Australia managing director Stephen Lester.


“Edging closer to its GT3 sibling, the 2020 updates to the Nissan GT-R Nismo are sure to impress.”


The rest of the MY20 GT-R range was released last month, with the 50th Anniversary special the headline act.

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