November 2, 2012
Nissan 2013 GT-R Pushes the Needle in Japan Debut
Nov. 2 – Sugo, Japan – What if Nissan’s super car was tuned for even greater performance?
Media in the northeast city of Sugo had a chance to see the 2013 Nissan GT-R Friday, which goes on sale in Japan later this month and in global markets from January.
After testing at the legendary Nurburgring, the GT-R features greater body rigidity and stability at top speeds.
Toshio Suzuki, development driver for GT-R, said testing at the famed German circuit was key to new model changes.
“We participated in the race using parts for our normal road conditions, and although there were some minor issues, we experienced no critical problems, so we could see the GTR’s potential. Also, after driving at high-speeds, we could understand the balance of downforce on the car.”
The 2013 offers greater mid-range engine response and improved acceleration at higher RPMs, while designers lowered the GT-R’s center of gravity, adding stability at top speeds.
Torque from the driveshaft to the hub bearings was increased to improve reliability in high-stress driving conditions, and the man behind the car, Chief Engineer Kazutoshi Mizuno, says this GT-R iteration reflects enhanced high-speed capability and safety.
“What is important for Nissan as an automaker is our commitment to areas such as safety. We not only contend that in a GT-R a normal car conversation is possible at 300 kph on the German autobahn, or that the car can do a lap at Nurburgring in 7 minutes 18 seconds, but we consider areas that other competitors don’t. ‘How do we design a car to endure a flat tire at 300 kph that can make it to the repair shop?’ or ‘how do we protect the passenger in case of an accident at 200 kph?’ or ‘how do we activate the VDC (vehicle dynamics control) system at over 250 kph?’ Overall, besides just marketing tag lines, we need to develop technologies of trust that other manufacturers don’t. That contributes to the Nissan brand and what I want to push.”
And the ride?
We asked Speedhunters.com‘s Dino Carbonare after his stint:
“Initially, I was very skeptical because they keep on improving the car every year and the changes can be ever so small, but after taking the car on the track and on normal roads it’s very evident that the lowering the roll center makes a difference on handling.”
My own take after Suzuki allowed me to join him for three laps: Wow.