Damn, Nissan! It hasn’t even been a year since you last upgraded the GT-R, and you’re pumping it up again? You do know it’s a car, not a smartphone, right? You don’t have to upgrade it every year.
The latest round of upgrades for the R35 GT-R (the new car is called the 2012 model in other markets) include a bump from 523 horsepower to 542, and a torque boost from 451 to 466 lb-ft. It doesn’t sound like much—in fact, it’s only a gain of about 3.5 percent—but combined with easier breathing, enhanced exhaust control and cooling and a strengthened gearbox, the new GT-R will supposedly now run from 0-60 in 2.7 seconds—two-tenths better than the outgoing model.
The additions aren’t all in the drivetrain, though; the body has been strengthened, carbon ceramic brakes are now optional, and a rear view camera is standard. Right-hand drive markets also receive a few tweaks unique to markets where they drive goofy: a new asymmetrical suspension designed to counteract the fact that the driver is now mounted on the same side as the prop shaft, and a new track pack that reduces weight, changes the suspension, and adds clingier seats and improved brake cooling.
Add up all the changes, and Nissan says the newest GT-R runs around the Nürburgring eight to ten seconds faster than the outgoing model—which puts its estimated Nordschleife time between 7:14 and 7:16. Now for the bad news, though: the changes don’t apply to U.S. models just yet. But we’re wiling to bet they will before too long. So if you’re considering buying a GT-R, we say hold off.
Nissan Releases the 2012 Model Year Nissan GT-R
YOKOHAMA, Japan (November 7, 2011) – Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. today announced the launch of the 2012 model year Nissan GT-R. The new model goes on sale November 24 in Japan and arrives in European showrooms in January 2012.
At a glance
- More power (550PS), improved economy and lower emissions
- Unique asymmetric suspension settings on RHD cars
- Enhanced transmission shift feel
- Special race tuned oils used in differential
- Body strengthened for even greater handling finesse
- Ceramic brakes option according to model
- New Bose® Precision Sound System woofers
- Rear view camera now standard
- New version ‘For TRACK PACK’ enhances GT-R’s pure performance (RHD only)
Significant improvements to the engine, chassis and transmission, plus a new lightweight “For TRACK PACK” version (currently available in some market such as Japan, UK), which accentuates the pure performance potential of the GT-R are the key changes to Nissan’s flagship model for the 2012 model year.
When it was launched, the iconic GT-R created a new type of super car. Performance and handling were exceptional, of course, but more importantly the car’s potential was accessible to all drivers under all conditions. It was greeted with universal praise but Nissan’s policy of constant development means the GT-R continues to evolve.
The latest version, which is due on sale in Europe in January 2012, is the most efficient yet. It offers even greater performance but this is allied to improved economy and lower emissions to provide further excitement to drivers and passengers.
As well as more power, the 2012 MY GT-R has a newly developed asymmetric suspension which compensates for greater weight on the driver’s side in RHD models, enhanced transmission ‘feel’ and a stronger body for extra rigidity and ever better handling.
There’s also the arrival of a new “For TRACK PACK” version (currently available in some markets such as Japan, UK) which inherits the DNA of the Spec_V model and turns the GT-R into a light-weight two seater for the ultimate in trackday performance.
2012 MY Nissan GT-R Overview
1. Mechanical Features
By improving the GT-R’s engine efficiency, its fuel economy has been decreased from 12L. to 11.8L/100 Kms, while engine output rises significantly from 390kW to 404kW (550PS) from /6,400rpm with maximum torque of from 612 to 632Nm(64.5kgfm) from 3,200 to 5,800 rpm.
Engine response and torque at mid- and low-speeds, and power at high revolutions, has been significantly improved, mainly due to:
- Improved intake efficiency
- Better air flow resistance, which has been reduced by the addition of an intake manifold fitted to the head of each unit and the use of resin in the enlarged air intake duct for the intercooler.
- Improved exhaust emissions efficiency and enhanced control.
- Reduced air flow resistance thanks to a more compact under floor catalyzer which improves emissions efficiency and reduces weight.
- Improved exhaust valve cooling performance by the adoption of a newly-designed metallic sodium-filled valve. At the same time, valve control timing, the air mixture ratio and ignition timing have been improved.
Shift feels and quietness has been refined thanks to a strengthened design of the shift fork arm and a firmer fixing bearing for the flywheel housing. A special differential oil R35 COMPETITION Type 2189E (75W140), which was developed for competition is now used in every version of GT-R.
As well as greater power and torque, the reinforcing of certain areas around the rear part of the engine compartment and dash panel deliver more responsive handling while a greater sense of the vehicle’s grip on the road is transmitted to the driver.
At the same time, more precise production methods, accompanied by advancements made in the vehicle body, have improved the inter-vehicle detection capability. This was achieved by changes in the positioning of the sensor and more rigid, highly-damped vehicle body, and by adding a more accurate acceleration sensor in areas with higher sensitivity in the vibration testing of each vehicle body.
Suspension and brakes
Accounting for the added weight of the driver in a right-hand drive vehicle coupled to the fact that the propeller shaft for front wheels is located on the right side of the vehicle; the GT-R’s suspension in RHD versions has been set asymmetrically. For the front suspension, there’s a harder spring rate on the left side while at the rear the suspension arm has been installed upwards on the left side and downwards on the right. This means an imbalanced wheel load when the car is stationary, but which is equalized during driving, providing improved responsiveness, smoothness and steering feel, as well as enhanced cornering stability and riding comfort (for RHD only).
NCCB (Nissan Carbon Ceramic Brakes) are available as a factory-installed option for the GT-R Premium Edition and EGOIST grade. These brakes accentuate the car’s agile road hold and supple ride feel thanks to a dramatically-reduced spring weight and refined, sharp braking performance unique to carbon ceramics. (In addition, service parts prices for the rotors and pads have been reduced.)
The quality feel of the instruments placed in front of the driver have been enhanced by the addition of blue lighting inside the tachometer ring to match the shift position indicator light giving a more sophisticated atmosphere in the cockpit.
Rear View Camera device will be standard on all models.
The Bose® sound system woofers, have been changed to Bose® Precision Sound System woofers that were developed for the EGOIST grade to further enhance sound quality.
3. “For TRACK PACK” (currently available in some markets such as Japan, UK)
“For TRACK PACK” (currently available in some markets such as Japan, UK) is a new version in the GT-R line up, designed for customers who want to enjoy a more visceral driving experience in their Nissan GT-R.
Jointly developed with NordRing Company in Japan, it features revised suspension settings, extra brake cooling (front and rear), and aluminum-alloy wheels from Spec-V made by Rays (with black quartz chrome color coating). The front spoiler with carbon air duct has been exclusively made for this edition and is installed as a set.
To reduce the car’s weight, this edition is a two-seat configuration with quilted fabric mats in place of the rear seats. The front seats are covered with leather and high-grip fabric, newly developed for the “For TRACK PACK” version and which firmly holds the driver in place during even the most spirited of trackday action (RHD only).
With the latest 2012MY version, the legend that is the Nissan GT-R continues to evolve.