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Old LS1 guy buys a GT-R

Old 09-03-2008, 03:04 AM
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Adam Bruce
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Default Old LS1 guy buys a GT-R

Hey all!
As you know I'm a long time member of Corvette Forum, and all the LS1 F-body boards. I just bought a GT-R. Wanted something different, and (while I am in the minority on this here) really liked the car, and thought it would be a fun change of pace. (from an E46 Daily driver and Trans Am project Car)

I'm taking it to Willow Springs tomorrow to give it a healthy flogging. I'll share my impressions if it's wanted. Sadly I only have experience with F-Cars, C5, C5 Z06 and C6 Z51, so I cannot give a good GT-R v. Z06-C6 review, but can fill in best I can.

I know there is a lot of heat around the GT-R right now here on CF, so if a review isn't wanted, completely understand. No need for more pissing contests.

Videos and photos of the new wheels... (not me driving in the video)
http://shinkaze.com/the-rides/2009-nissan-gt-r/

-Adam
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Old 09-03-2008, 07:31 AM
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Niice!
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Old 09-03-2008, 11:51 AM
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02MillenniumVette
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Congrats! I like the Ferrari better though in those pics.
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Old 09-03-2008, 01:18 PM
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Good for you, seems like a cool car, lots of technology
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Old 09-03-2008, 01:34 PM
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sure, let's see the review! that would be awesome. plus, reviews from real owners much better than magazine. gtr looks like great technology, most of us can appreciate it no matter who the manufacturer is.
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Old 09-04-2008, 12:17 AM
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Just got back from a FULL...(ugh, very full) day at Willow Springs..7AM to 7PM. We were shooting a Season of Head to Head that will be on StreetFire.net (Torque.tv production). Had some cool cars there from the Tech Art GT-Street 997 Turbo to a 650hp Supercharged Challenger. I don't think I can talk about the pairings and results until the episodes come out, so I'll keep the talk to the GT-R.

I didn't get any real track time to work the car out, as most of it was taken up by the professional racers doing photo shoot work, so sadly that was a bit of a blow. That said the Pros completely fell in love with the car. In stock form it posted very high in the rankings (again can't talk about the actual results, but I was ahead of some serious metal).

So the big criticisms of the car, I'll address them.

Weight. Not really the issue you would think it would be. The car actually feels deceptively light, and the only way you know has some weight is under super heavy on the brakes hairpin turns. The car builds speed very smoothly, which may be the torque muted by weights, but to be honest the AWD lets you power out of any turn far earlier than I could in my E46 M3.

Tire Wear. Probably did a dozen full bore laps, a bit of drifting and doughnuts for the camera, and the stock tires really look fine. The car is so smooth that it lacks a lot of the drama that really eats up tires. COBB tuning was there with their GT-R, and they said that tires were not the problem, rotors were. They've been through a few sets, but then their car is a 100% track car with no street miles.

Road Feel. The faster you drive the GT-R the more analogue it feels. Cruising down the highway, you can turn off your brain and get away with thinking you're in a stiffly sprung Maxima. Typically that's an insult, but in my I405 commute to work in LA traffic, it's a bit of a blessing. My E46 is much more alive under your fingers, so you are always DRIVING that car, which can get very wearing in LA traffic. If you don't have a hell commute to work like I do, then I can't say for sure if you'll love or hate the synthetic feel when commuting. Put your foot down, and the Mr Hyde wakes up and you get a psychic link with the pavement. The car feels fantastic when driven with some aggression, HOWEVER even a smirk of aggression will put you at 30mph over before you realize what's happening.

Power delivery. so my Trans Am made 550 RWTorque, so I know what big power feels like. My CBR-600RR has no Torque and a 17,000 RPM redline that takes it to [email protected] so I know what revs feel like. The GT-R builds power very smoothly with a little if any lag. Launch Control is blistering, but it very quickly settles into a smooth delivery that builds and builds and doesn't let up at all. my Trans Am fell off pretty aggressively and had much more violence below 100mph. I believe the [email protected] times I've seen people post....but wierd as it may sound to say this, the GT-R is a waste at a drag strip. Drive the car around Willow Springs and you'll agree, the car is made for handling.

Handling. This is the car's forte. The other pro drivers affirmed what Millen said that the car holds astounding velocity in the turns. It maintains the speed by virtue of smooth power delivery and AWD. Because the turbine smoothness of the motor, you can get into the power far earlier than I would dare in a Porsche or my E46 M3. As the power builds, the AWD just keeps you planted and swings you around. COBB tuning told me there is a ECM dedicated to just AWD functions, and I believe it, all 4 wheels are always working for you.

Brakes. Impressive, the Pros had far more confidence in them than I do, but then the E46 M3 brakes sorta suck, so I'm gun shy... still learning where they live. This is a brake late leave sooner corner car. COBB says the stock calipers are fine, it's the rotors that you have to be careful with.

On the Subjective points. Interior quality is very impressive but still Japanese. Not quite up to German levels, but I will say, you can tell Nissan took pride in this car, even the leather stitching on the dash appears to be done with pride. I'm not entirely happy with the Alcantera-ish cloth inserts in the seats, but damn if they didn't work at the track.

Exterior. Photos really don't do the car justice. It looks entirely different in person. Photos are very flat, and the GT-R is a very 3 Dimensional car with lots of body detail. I've received a shocking amount of attention from people that don't know what the car is, and are even more confused when they see it has a Nissan badge. Can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm actually finding myself boasting that it's a Nissan.... I think I may be having a little reverse Brand snobbery after 4 years in a BMW, and Nissan has a bit of underdog syndrome which I'm digging for the few months that the car is still somewhat rare.

Anyhow, so that is the brain dump, let me know if you have any questions....and to answer the whole Corvette vs. GT-R thing up front, Without a doubt, different horses for different courses. Drive both, and you'll see they are very different on many levels, and it's almost like asking "Which is better, a Fork or a Spoon"?...well depends on what you're eating.
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Old 09-04-2008, 12:54 AM
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Thanks for the great review! I'm really looking forward to your video on Streetfire.
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:29 AM
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Uploaded some pics running in a slide show as well. We had a ball :-)





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Old 09-04-2008, 04:28 AM
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Thanks for the great write up, the vid and some nice photos. You are spot on in your evaluations of the car. I just got my Ivory Pearl GT-R
3 weeks ago and although I haven't been to a track yet as you have, I can't wait till I can. I also own an 07 Z06 and your correct when you say apples to oranges trying to compare two great cars IMO. One thing that I am still amazed at is the silky smooth surge that you get when accelerating hard in the GT-R. It is just different than anything else I've driven...kind of surreal in a sense is the best way I can describe it at this point.


Can't wait for the streetfire video. Keep us updated.


Good luck with yours.


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Old 09-04-2008, 10:55 AM
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Nice car Adam! Glad to see you still aren't afraid to drive your cars hard. Sadly, most of these high dollar toys get purchased by wussbags who would rather polish a car than make it perform to capacity.

Now we are just f-body dudes with bigger budgets it seems

Tony
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:31 PM
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Tony! hey hombre, always great to see ya.
Originally Posted by NineBall View Post
Nice car Adam! Glad to see you still aren't afraid to drive your cars hard. Sadly, most of these high dollar toys get purchased by wussbags who would rather polish a car than make it perform to capacity.
Maybe one day I'll get a Porsche 911 C4 Convertible for that, but in the meantime this car has a G-Meter with a red fun line that begs to be crossed...



Oh, the guy that owns the track record at Willow took me around in the car. His first time ever in a GT-R and he put the Total G-Meter to 1.5 G (Probably on a brake/turn combo, but there was one high banked turn, so that could have been it too).

Now we are just f-body dudes with bigger budgets it seems

Tony
Ah yes, but as the Axiom goes, Racing always cost just a little more than you can afford.
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Old 09-04-2008, 06:15 PM
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I have no experience but I must be one of those vette minorities too. I love the new GT-R. Heck, even Jay Leno liked it a lot on his web page when he reviewed it and he's as American as a car collector gets. There just no doubt that Nissan made a good car finally for the states. Don't know where the market will go with it though.
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Old 09-05-2008, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by PostShawn View Post
I have no experience but I must be one of those vette minorities too. I love the new GT-R. Heck, even Jay Leno liked it a lot on his web page when he reviewed it and he's as American as a car collector gets. There just no doubt that Nissan made a good car finally for the states. Don't know where the market will go with it though.
Well, I think the over sticker price thing will probably wear out in 90 days or so, and then something else will be the "car of the moment",

By popular demand, more pics of Sarah....
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Old 09-06-2008, 01:37 AM
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Awesome review...congratulations!
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Old 09-07-2008, 01:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve Theodore View Post
Awesome review...congratulations!
Thanks, the car has been pretty fun so far. Took it in for service today (routine 1,000 performance calibration) and got the white glove treatment from the dealership. I was a bit worried about that to be honest. Chevy dealers have been selling Corvettes for over half a century, and know how to treat their buyers, I was worried that Nissan would not, but actually I was pleasantly surprised.
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Old 09-08-2008, 12:50 PM
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Thanks for the write up. I'm glad to see a "man on the street" report. And for envious reasons.
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Old 09-08-2008, 03:51 PM
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Originally Posted by boracayjohnny View Post
Thanks for the write up. I'm glad to see a "man on the street" report. And for envious reasons.
You're welcome, I'll post more feedback as I get more seat time. I hope to get an honest full track day in the car to really get a feel for it. With the exception of this weekend it's all been stop and go I405 LA commuting.

I will say that this transmission is brilliant with the exception of engine braking. I used to do that all the time with my previous cars, but combine a low compression 3.8 Liter motor and 3,800 pounds, the engine does little to slow the car down on downshifts. Counterpoint to that, the car exceptionally smooth in automatic mode, The Dual Clutch system will be the death of the SMG/F1 style transmission. I *REALLY* want to drive a V8 M3 with the DCT now, because I'm sure it must sound brilliant at full tilt combined with this instant shifting. sort of wish the GT-R had a higher Redline just for the aural pleasure even though it doesn't need it.

I took the car up into the mountains this weekend. Very composed....took a little of the fun out of it since there was zero drama compared to other cars I've taken up there. When the G meter is at 0.75 Gs the car is still completely composed and flat. The side to side transitions are very quick and light. Jeremy Clarkston says it corners at the speed of electricity....I'd call that an apt metaphor.

I would like to push it further to see how it comes unglued, but for safety reasons don't want to explore those limits in the mountains.... i must be getting old.
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Old 09-08-2008, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Adam Bruce View Post
I would like to push it further to see how it comes unglued, but for safety reasons don't want to explore those limits in the mountains.... i must be getting old.
No, you realize you're not invincible as many 18 yo's think. Btw, the GT-R can make ya feel young again or so it's what I'm thinking when I read your write up.
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Old 09-08-2008, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by boracayjohnny View Post
No, you realize you're not invincible as many 18 yo's think. Btw, the GT-R can make ya feel young again or so it's what I'm thinking when I read your write up.
I think feeling young is what any good car does regardless of performance :-)

Drove a Mini Cooper Convertible S the other day and it was a total hoot to drive. Very fun car.
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Old 09-08-2008, 08:56 PM
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Thanks for your thoughts. The GTR looks great.
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