Caveat Emptor - 2009 Nissan GT-R Long-Term Road Test

2009 Nissan GT-R Long-Term Road Test

2009 Nissan GT-R: Caveat Emptor

November 23, 2008


Sorry for the delay in posting this, but there was a lot going on with the service and it took a bit of time to iron out the wrinkles.

Follow the jump for full details, this one's a doozy.

As always, easy stuff out of the way first: 12,000-miles in GT-R world is transmission calibration and oil change time. That runs $384.95, $300 in labor and $84.95 in parts. Air filters are also recommended at this interval and given the amount of time this car spends in the desert, it was an easy decision to drop the $85 (this price is for the filter elements only -- still $15/ea more than Courtesy Nissan in Texas wants--because of an original price misquote here they threw the labor in for free. Expect that to cost more when servicing your GT-R.). After the recent fires we've experienced here in SoCal, though, we may need to replace them again sooner than we had wanted. That brings me to the first thing we did not have serviced; the in-cabin microfilter. But again, after these fires, we'll have to do soon.

The big thing here was the windshield. My usual contacts had no luck finding a GT-R windshield and wouldn't get one from Nissan. I could bring them a windshield, they said, but we'd have to buy it ourselves. Well, at that point it was easier just to have the dealer set up the appointment and that's what we did.

It took Nissan of Santa Monica about an hour to get a quote on the piece, but boy was it a good one; $1,300.43 for the glass alone. We're used to prices being a little higher in Santa Monica than they would be in Wichita, but wow...that's a big number. Oh, and that big number doesn't include the $$322.80 for labor on the swap. Take a second and compare that to the $1231.67 we paid to have the dealership replace the windshield on our 2007 Mini Cooper. That price included $725 worth of labor which leaves about $500 for the actual part. We didn't have much of an option as parts costs generally fluctuate very little between the dealers here, so we went for it.

The part came in about 5 days later and the install was performed the next day. They outsourced the repair to 1st Class Auto Glass, a local outfit we've used before with good luck. With a few warnings (don't go racing around, don't slam the doors, don't go to the carwash for 48 hours) we had our GT-R back the very same day but without $2,244.23 of our dollars.

But then we read the blog posting by GTRZ in a follow-up report. We weren't thrilled by what he had to say, "I broke my windshield also on my 2009 GTR. I had it replaced by Team Nissan (Oxnard, CA) for a little more than $1k and this included installation." *sigh* This got me calling around, again, but this time to competing Nissan dealers from Texas to Massachusetts and then back here to California. The most expensive, of course, was here and it was $960. The other dealers had them in the 8's. By this time we had already paid for the repair and I was more than a little pissed, so I called our service advisor at Nissan of SM and left a heated, but polite, message. When he returned my call he had already done some leg-work on his own and found that their prices were wildly out-of-whack with what others were charging. I was offered the choice of partial refund for the overcharge or credit towards a future repair, we took the check. They didn't have to do anything, but when it comes to keeping a GT-R owner happy they seem to understand the need for extraordinary measures. Gotta keep the conductor of the gravy-train happy during the tough times, right?

Mike Magrath, Vehicle Testing Assistant @ 12,072 miles

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