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Thread: Nissan at the 'Ring...amazing!

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    Nissan at the 'Ring...amazing!

    According to Motor Trend magazine, the soon to be released Nissan GT-R has recently been timed lapping the Nurburgring's Nordschleife in 7 minutes, 35 seconds. This was a stock version of the 480 HP GT-R and that time is the 6th quickest among production road cars: faster than the Porsche 997 Turbo, McLaren SLR, Corvette Z06 and the Porsche 996 GT2, one second behind the Koenigsegg CCR, 2 seconds slower than the Pagani Zonda F, 3 seconds behind the Porsche 997 GT2 and only 7 seconds slower than a Porsche Carrera GT! To put this in better perspective, we're talking about a 3800 lb., front engine, AWD, 4 passenger sedan that will cost under $80,000 when it goes on sale next year in the US! BMW has its work cut out for it.

  2. #2
    Wow, that is amazing!! I didn't realize it was such a heavy car?
    Andrew Macpherson

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    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    "Tank" comes to mind...but fast is fast (I guess). Time will tell.

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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    While the technology coming out of the "East" is certainly impressive, I just can't get into the edgy styling that seems to be the norm with Japanese cars, especially those that are performance oriented. The new GT-R is no different. Certainly, the numbers coming out of the preliminary reviews are very impressive, but its looks just kill it for me. It's really a shame as I really liked the look of the previous car that carried the Skyline name (perhaps that's why they dropped it on the new car). The previous car wasn't "gorgeous", but it was at least somewhat attractive, allowing its performance to stand on its own.

    The G2 NSX appears to be heading in the same direction. I really admired the original car for its simple and attractive styling, but the new concepts are hideous. I'm guessing it will also "pork-up". Which, too, is a shame as it was the lightness of the original NSX that really made the car a pleasant performer.

    Oh well, we live in a time of obsession with new technology and not art.
    Last edited by thegunguy; December 6th 2007 at 15:19.
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    Unfortunately, the trend towards heavier cars continues to dominate modern designs. While 3800 lbs. may seem like a lot for a performance machine, consider the following: Current M6 (3909 lbs.), current M5 (4012 lbs.), Bugatti Veyron (4150 lbs.), Ferrari 599 GTB (3865 lbs.), Lamboghini Murcielago (3955 lbs.), McLaren SLR (3750 lbs.), Aston Martin DB9 (3880 lbs.), and for comparison's sake, BMW Z8 (3685 lbs.).
    There may be hope for those of us who believe lighter is better: Ferrari has recently announced that it will no longer try to compete in the ever-rising horsepower wars and will instead concentrate on reducing the overall weight of its future designs to enhance their performance level. If successful, this may spark a new trend towards lighter and faster machines that will force other manufacturers to follow suit. As for current design trends, with a few exceptions (Aston Martin, Alfa Romeo, and Fisker Coachbuild come readily to mind), I completely agree with your assessment. I seriously doubt whether these "edgy" designs will be appreciated in the future whereas classics like the Z8 will maintain their appeal because they are so pleasing to the eye. A perfect example of this dichotomy is the Lamborghini Miura vs. Lamborghini Countach. The former was all swoop and the latter was all edge. The Miura has become a highly sought after and appreciated classic whereas the Countach has become little more than a curiosity. I find it ironic that Lamborghini has resurrected the Countach theme with their latest design, the Reventon. History will judge the decision but I remain convinced that there is an "Aesthetic" to car design which is more universal in its appeal rather than just trendy.

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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grease Monkey View Post
    I remain convinced that there is an "Aesthetic" to car design which is more universal in its appeal rather than just trendy.
    This is true of so many thing beyond even car design. True beauty, like the Z8 , is timeless.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grease Monkey View Post
    The Miura has become a highly sought after and appreciated classic whereas the Countach has become little more than a curiosity. I find it ironic that Lamborghini has resurrected the Countach theme with their latest design, the Reventon.
    Yet they had an updated Miura that was a masterpiece and they chose not to produce.

    The east Asian cars tend to look like angry insects on steroids.
     
    2000 Red over black
    heavily modified for performance. Although, not to the level of GM's car

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    That really is gorgeous, and maybe we'll see it yet since it has been written in a couple of the mags that the end of the line is near for the current Murcilago V12 cars. Lambo will need to do something really stunning to remain relevant in the upcoming credit crisis/depression. I'd be more inclined to reach for something this beautiful than a different variation on the 'wedge' theme.
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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    The edgy designs from Lambo over the past thirty years or so have never done it for me. However, I've always liked the Miura (as do many it seems). It's a real shame that Lambo has chosen to kill the modern Miura, and their latest concept seems to be even more infatuated with aggressive edges. Perhaps, it's appealing to some, but not to me.

    My memory is rusty, but it seems like I remember that the new Miura was going to be an "affordable" Lambo as well...say in the low 100s.
    thegunguy

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    Just a little update on the Nissan GT-R. The cars have been released for sale in Japan and Edmunds' Senior Road Test Editor, Josh Jacquot, got his hands on a privately owned example and ran some performance tests under less than ideal conditions at an airstrip in Japan. The 2009 GT-R hit 60 mph in 3.3 seconds! That's quicker than the latest Dodge Viper, Corvette Z06 and the Porsche 911 Turbo! Mr. Jacquot opined that there was probably another tenth or two to be shaved given improved road surface. The GT-R went on to finish the 1/4 mile in 11.6 seconds at 120.9 mph. That, too, is quicker than the 911 Turbo, the 600 hp Viper and the Corvette Z06. 60-0 braking was accomplished in 104 feet which is only 1 foot longer than the 911 Turbo equipped with the $8000 ceramic composite brake package, the same distance required by the Viper and 2 feet shorter than the Z06. Next came the slalom test, conducted on very uneven pavement with painted stripes to cross and the GT-R managed 72.9 mph which is faster than the 911 Turbo or the Z06 and slightly behind the huge-tired Viper. Folks, this is simply amazing for a $70,000 sedan. Ugly? Yes. Fast? Unbelievably. Frankly, I have no idea how they did it but Nissan has set a new standard by which all future performance cars will be measured. Now if they would just let Henrik design a body for them....

  11. #11
    Wow, that really is quite something, it almost sounds outside the realms of reason that a 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V6 making 480hp can achieve those numbers in a 3,800 lb car!

    It really is ugly though, if I was going to get one (which I'm not!) it would have to be in a very dark grey, to hide it's shapes as much as possible! That said the interior is even uglier that the exterior!
     
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    Z8 Guru 2112's Avatar
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    UGLY! sorry
    2000 Red over black
    heavily modified for performance. Although, not to the level of GM's car

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    Merry Christmas And Merry Holidays And A Great New Year

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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Although, I too fall into the "ugly" crowd, I think most of it is the roof line and the rear-quarter window.
    thegunguy

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    Z8 Guru 2112's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thegunguy View Post
    Although, I too fall into the "ugly" crowd, I think most of it is the roof line and the rear-quarter window.
    Don't forget the front fenders, headlights stretched too far and the Grouper nose.
    2000 Red over black
    heavily modified for performance. Although, not to the level of GM's car

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    I certainly didn't bring this car up because I thought it would appeal to Z8 owners. The aesthete in all of us would never find such an ungainly design attractive. I just can't figure out how they got so much performance out of the package and find it intriguing. If I had to guess, I suspect they're using a higher than normal final drive ratio to provide maximum acceleration capability as opposed to autobahn speed and that they've balanced the weight distribution in such a way as to maximize launch traction. I'd also guess they're using some sort of electromagnetic dampers that can rapidly adapt to changing demands but I can't wait to see specific details on the complete suspension set-up. I guess what truly excites me about this car is the potential it represents. Just close your eyes and imagine it with a voluptuous body and handsome interior! Now would you be interested?

  17. #17
    Yes, but to really have me plunge my hand in my wallet for any sportscar it has to be able to be as good a trackday car as the Lotus, so all that potential could still be that ugly and I' d still buy it, but only if it came in under 2500lbs. The thing I really learnt from my 18 months tracking the GT3 is that 3,000lbs plus cars eat expendibles at a very expensive pace at the track!!!

    The Lotus does almost the same lap times at around a third of the running costs of the Porsche, and it's lightness an lack of sheer power really make it mush more fun to drive. You should try on one day, they really are lovely little things at the track.
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    How will the new ZR1 do? I think its going to be relatively light with mega power. I suspect the rub on the GTR will be that it will put big demands on its tires. Really no big deal, just like its probably being fairly thirsty. In general the weight increase is due to larger cars, which the marketers think require more luxury items and of course increasing safety. You know what- I like that these new cars are comfortable and fast and you can plug in an ipod- and they are safe too. At the same time I say cheers to Lotus for building smaller and lighter cars.

    On the GTR- rumor is they are understating the HP by about 50...

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    The ZR1 should be an impressive performer but I am a bit disappointed with the approach they took. The car is supposed to weigh 200 lbs. MORE than the Z06 and they got all that horsepower by supercharging the engine which adversely affected the car's weight distribution.

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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I 100% agree, GM. I think they took the easy way out. With the Z06 I was actually quite impressed at the level of technology and development that they put into the car. With the ZR1, I am impressed by the numbers, but not at how they are achieved. In the end, the Z06 may be the better of the two for those that prefer a more handling oriented car. While I like the my Lotus' approach to performance, I've had fun taking a few laps in the Z06. The Corvette has really come a long way.
    Last edited by thegunguy; January 4th 2008 at 23:37.
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    Z8Mania
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    It seems to me that both cars play to the stereotype of each home nation's automobiles. The American has gone for a tried and true method of making more power with a pretty traditional delivery system and the Japanese has a more high tech approach, especially in its drive system (high tech awd+DCT type tranny). Both have questionable looks inside and out. Lets face it, no matter what the manufacturers say, these are street cars first and foremost and I agree a Lotus is going to be more enjoyable for a true track driver because its more of a true track car. How much more money is the ZR1 going to be over a Z06? $30-40k? For that kind of money I don't think GM (the automaker, not THE GM! ) could really do much more to the vehicle besides what they did for the ZR1. It seems like solid common sense here if they wanted to do a high power Vette. With gas prices and worries over emissions, this might be the last time we see a car like this from GM. Whereas the GTR comes from a long line of high tech racers so its approach is no surprise. I understand how you guys could say that GM took the easy way out, but I wonder if there was really any other way to do it?

    I agree with you guys that this now makes the Z06 look like an even better value though. My other criticism of the ZR1 is the see through engine cover- if we get to see in the engine compartment, please dont show us a plastic engine cover! I am also disappointed a little bit with the decision to build the GTR solely with an automated tranny- but this is part of its high tech appeal I guess.