No car better embodies Nissan's philosophy of building uncompromising performance machines than the GT-R. Easily one of the most capable cars for the money, the Nissan GT-R feels downright invincible on the road. With power output and handling dynamics rivaling the world's best, the GT-R remains a genuine high-performance bargain, even as its starting price has crept up over the years.
Underneath its chiseled features, the GT-R is a technological tour de force, boasting a dual-clutch automated manual transmission, an advanced all-wheel-drive system, an adaptive sport suspension and a heaving turbocharged V6 that supplies its power in a head-spinning jet rush. On the other hand, the GT-R is large and hefty for a supercar, and the transmission bumps and staggers in slow traffic. Plus, a Nissan key fob will never carry the prestige of top European marques. But as a worthy successor to the legendary Skyline GT-R -- a car never officially available in the United States -- the Nissan GT-R is an absolute must-drive for any automotive enthusiast.
Current Nissan GT-R
The Nissan GT-R is a high-performance sport coupe offered in four trim levels: Premium, Black Edition, Track Edition and Nismo.
Standard equipment includes 20-inch wheels, Brembo brakes, an electronically adjustable suspension, leather/faux-suede upholstery, heated power-adjustable front seats, keyless ignition/entry and an 11-speaker Bose audio system with satellite radio, iPod connectivity and Bluetooth phone and streaming audio.
The Black Edition adds lightweight black wheels, a carbon-fiber rear wing, red interior trim and Recaro seats. The Track Edition gets a firmer suspension, special brake-cooling ducts, a carbon-fiber trunk lid and Nissan's own sport front seats. The GT-R Nismo pumps up the volume with higher engine output, an even stiffer suspension, aerodynamic upgrades and exclusive interior flourishes.
Every GT-R is powered by a turbocharged 3.8-liter V6. In the Premium, Black Edition and Track Edition models, it sends 545 horsepower and 463 pound-feet of torque to all four wheels. The GT-R Nismo boasts an even 600 hp and 481 lb-ft. The transmission in all models is a six-speed automated manual gearbox. Fuel economy approaches 20 mpg in mixed driving, which is quite respectable for one of the fastest cars in the world.
In reviews, we've noted that the GT-R's electronically adjustable dampers hardly coddle, though some tweaks for 2015 have noticeably improved the ride. We recommend saving R-Mode for track use, as it'll rattle your brain on surfaces that aren't perfectly smooth. The middle setting, Normal, is ideal for charging along an empty back road, where the GT-R tracks through curves with robotic precision. The steering is as communicative and responsive as we've ever experienced in an all-wheel-drive car. If anything, the GT-R is almost too easy to drive quickly, lacking the sort of drama one expects from a supercar. Still, changes over time have made it a little more involving.
Firm dampers aside, the GT-R is actually quite livable on a daily basis, thanks to a reasonably spacious cabin and a generous features list. There's even an immersive onboard performance app that was co-developed with Polyphony Digital, maker of the Gran Turismo video game series. The Nissan GT-R gives you almost everything at a sub-exotic price, and that's a mighty impressive feat.
Read the most recent 2016 Nissan GT-R review.
If you are looking for older years, visit our used Nissan GT-R page.