Cult Cars Road Tests

Cult Cars 14: Nissan GT-R Spec V

Time 12 years ago

gtr1It’s already an icon. A handful of lucky Nissan dealers will be basking in the halo effect soon, when it arrives in the UK. It’s the mainstream-maker alternative to the Porsche 911. It is, of course, the Nissan GT-R.

We could feature the regular version here – after all, with well over 1,000 UK orders, yet supply at a trickle, it’s not as if it’s going to be thronging our streets any time soon.

But, to be a true Car Dealer Cult Car, you need to be very, very special indeed. Enter, therefore, the
Nissan GT-R Spec V. The hardcore big brother of Nissan’s Godzilla, if for some reason the standard car is not tough enough.


It really is blindingly special. One of the rare criticisms of the standard car is that it’s a bit heavy. To solve this, Nissan has junked the rear seats, and employed much use of ultra-exotic carbon fibre. It gets the weight down to below 1,700kg – still heavy, but rather lighter than the standard car.

This helps it go even faster. The regular GT-R already has a 0-62mph time of 3.3 seconds… although the twin-turbo 3.8-litre V6 doesn’t get any more power than the regular Porsche-beating 478bhp, it does
get more torque. At speed, Nissan engineers say, this increases punch out of corners. Just the job for
trimming that Nurburgring time.

There are other aids too: 20-inch wheels, for example, which clothe sportier suspension that is a mighty 20 per cent stiffer than the standard model. Initial test drives suggest this makes the handling simply mighty.

And all the extra speed it’s able to carry is hauled down with ease, thanks to Nissan’s first-ever use of carbon ceramic brakes. That’s not the only use of special materials, either.

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gtr3The Recaro seats are made from carbon fibre. Tyres, from highly exotic Bridgestone-formulated rubber. The exhausts – well, they’re built from what else but titanium? Yes, the same titanium that F1 manufacturers use – at huge expense.

Needless to say, all this doesn’t come cheap. The standard car already has a list price that those desperate to own one will have to add five-figure sums to.

But even that pales compared to the cost of the Spec V. For, it DOUBLES the list price of the standard car – to well over £110,000! For a Nissan! Albeit a very, very special Nissan indeed.

No word yet on whether Nissan will officially import it. The factory can only make 30 a month, and already orders are spiralling.

But that won’t stop limited numbers finding their way into the UK, we’re sure. Specialist Japanese car dealers are going to have a field day with this, their new poster car.

Cult? It could almost have defined the word. First car dealer on the phone, to offer us a test drive, wins a big gold star…

Nissan GT-R Spec V

Price: £110,000

Engine: 3.8-litre, V6

Power: 478bhp, 588Nm

0-60mph: 3.3s

Max: 155mph (removable limiter)

Now finance one with Bridford:

Option 1: £40,000 deposit, 24 x £360 plus £70k final payment*

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Option 2: £20,000 deposit, 48 x £1,375 £40k final payment*

*The above options are specifically for applicants who do more than 2/3rds business mileage, limited companies or high net worth individuals. Contact Bridford for a written quotation and full terms and conditions.

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James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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