2009 Nissan GT-R Long-Term Road Test


2009 Nissan GT-R: Godzilla vs. PDK

January 30, 2009

GT-R PDK blog.jpg

As the economy continues to sputter, we here at the Long-Term Blog are turning our attention to burning questions that are in tune with these troubled times. Such as the following:

Which is better, the GT-R's dual-clutch automated manual transmission or Porsche's new PDK?

I'd like to leave aside the question of durability, since we've just reported that less than one percent of GT-Rs have experienced the infamous transaxle failure. But Nissan's eliminating launch control from future GT-Rs, so there must be something to it. As for PDK, it can weather 40 consecutive launches without issue, according to Porsche, and nothing in our experience suggests otherwise. Advantage: PDK.

The margin only widens at speed, where PDK proves utterly seamless in full automatic mode and serves up lightning-quick yet remarkably smooth manual shifts in "Sport." The GT-R's transmission is very good, but there's some perceptible thunking through the gears, and its downshifts aren't as quick as PDK's.

So there's your answer: Godzilla's good, but PDK's better. It's still no manual substitute, though, and never will be.

Josh Sadlier, Associate Editor, Edmunds.com

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The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2009 Nissan GT-R in VA is:

$151 per month*
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