The year was 1999, with the introduction of the all new R34 Nissan Skyline GTR road car, Nissan’s motorsports division Nismo, decides to use the all new chassis in the most popular and competitive racing series in Japan, the JGTC (Japanese Grand Touring Car Championship). With its potent twin turbo RB26DETT engine producing 500hp, the car clinches the championship in its maiden year. The next two years however would prove to be a dry spell for the GTR.
In 2003, Nismo decided to change the engine from the RB26DETT to a twin turbo 3.0 liter VQ30DETT unit. The change would prove to be for the better as the Xanavi Nismo team got back the championship. Nismo would be switching to the 350Z chassis in 2004 so the 2003 championship marked a grand going away party for the GTR.
2003 also marked the year that Motul, an international lubricants company, decided to sponsor the JGTC. Running the No. 22 Motul Pitwork GTR, the team would win the 2nd race of the season (Fuji-500) and get 4th overall in the championship standings with Masami Kageyama and Richard Lyons behind the wheel.
In March of 2007, four years after the GTR retired from the JGTC, Autoplus Sportzentrium, the Philippine distributor of Motul automotive lubricants, brought the No. 22 car for local fans to view and behold. Although this car shares the same name as the road going car, that’s about the only similarity they have. This is a pure race car with no expense spared in the pursuit of absolute performance.
The body is purely carbon fiber, with a steel roof to aid in chassis rigidity. The underside is also carbon fiber and completely flat to ensure that air travels at a fast velocity, creating low pressure and sucking the car down. Diffusers at the front and rear, aerodynamically tuned bumpers, and a massive rear wing all contribute to huge amounts of downforce. The suspension consists of horizontally mounted springs and shock absorbers with remote reservoirs. The engine is a 3.0 liter twin turbo unit, producing a restricted 500hp. Power is transferred to the ground via a quad plate carbon clutch, through the XTrac six speed sequential manual transmission, and finally down to the massive 13-inch wide rear wheels and Bridgestone Potenza slick tires (this race car is RWD unlike the AWD road going GTR). The inside is purely business with a carbon fiber dashboard, quick-detachable steering wheel with LCD monitor, as well as a multitude of switches to control brake bias (front-rear, left-right), engine mapping, and other vital parameters. A single racing seat holds the driver tight (an additional racing seat is installed at the passenger area for demo runs).
A curb weight of around 1000kg or approximately 600kg lighter than the road going GTR ensures a 0-100kph time of around 2.9secs. What about the results of the suspension and downforce modifications? Think 2.1Gs of cornering force (F1 cars manage 4-5Gs while road cars usually manage less than 1G) and being able to take a 90-degree corner at more than 100kph. The massive AP Racing brakes stop the car from 260-100kph within 100meters.
With the amount of R&D that has gone into the JGTC Skyline GTR, and the cost of the engines, parts, and other components, the cost for this vehicle adds up to around $1 million. Not that you could buy it though as Nissan reserved these units for demonstrations and shows all over the world.