Nissan

Nissan cars

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The Nissan GT-R is my hero. I was so amazed by the performance of the R35 generation of GT-R when launched that I modified the back of my Legacy 2.5GT to read “2.5GT-R” with an expensive and genuine GT-R emblem from Japan.

To put a badge from another car onto your own, as a grown man, is pretty pathetic in retrospect. But for the year or so that my Subaru was a 2.5GT-R, every time I saw the beveled red letters of that logo, I could not help but smile.

My car, I told myself, was sort of like a GT-R for people with dogs and cargo flexibility needs. I eventually grew up and mounted the GT-R emblem in prime position on my refrigerator, where it delights me even today.

Do not meet your heroes, they say. A lifetime spent worshiping a professional baseball pitcher, only to find out he is meaner than a rattlesnake and twice as deadly. Seeing the underbelly of any icon could ruin baseball altogether - if that was your life’s passion until seeing the bad parts up close.

I got to meet my hero last week via the 2014 Nissan GT-R Track Pack . While the car defined my day, and has consumed my thoughts ever since, I am unable to form an opinion even a full week later.

This is rare for me. Love it or hate it, I generally get a good sense of a car’s merits and issues within a few minutes behind the wheel.

But the GT-R is very different. Our time together was more of a fling than going steady, but if I thought I loved the GT-R more than anything else in the world before I drove it, what do I think now?

Still hard to say. I do know that sitting down in the GT-R for the first time was very intense on a number of levels. The hoon before me had every setting in race mode, and, frankly, I was not prepared for the performance the GT-R offers its drivers every second it is on the roads.

So while I try to stop shaking with cold sweats after only a few full-throttle sessions, the GT-R is better than a hero to me. It was better than everything I had previously read or knew about the vehicle.

We are putting together the full Driven review for next week, but until then, please enjoy these TopSpeed First-Drive Video reviews of the 2014 Nissan GT-R .

Click past the jump to see me sweat it out while hitting 60-mph in a claimed 2.8 seconds.

Posted on by Simona  

Considering how surprisingly popular the Nissan Juke has been since it was first introduced a few years ago, nobody’s going to hold it against Nissan if it continued to produce more powerful versions of the funky-looking crossover.

To be fair, it’s hard to top the 500-horsepower Juke-R , but Nissan has continuously produced more and more powerful versions of the Juke, and at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show , another one is set to grace us with its presence.

The new tuned-up crossover will pick up where the Juke Nismo left off. Taking that into account, the Juke Nismo RS offers an even more powerful engine, sport-tuned suspension with new springs and shock absorbers. There will also be a more aggressive exterior look, an updated interior and other cool Nismo features.

Updated 11/20/2013: This review was updated with the official details, images and specs.

Updated 02/28/2014: Nissan announced today prices for the 2014 Juke Nismo RS which will be put on sale at national dealers later this spring. Prices for the sporty crossover will start from $26,120.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Nissan Juke Nismo RS.

The Nurburgring is typically used by automakers to test their new vehicles in an attempt to gauge how fast it can go around the track relative to the competition.

Now, it appears that Nissan is setting up shop at the ’Ring this week in an attempt to set a new lap record for the Nissan GT-R .

The car that’s poised to challenge that mark?

The soon-to-be-unveiled 2015 Nissan GT-R Nismo .

According to Autocar, the Japanese automaker has booked exclusive use of the ’Ring, which it will use to put the GT-R Nismo through the paces. The objective, as far as Nissan is concerned, is to shatter the record lap time of the GT-R around the Nurbugring. Currently, that record sits at 7 minutes and 18.6 seconds, which was set by Toshio Suzuki last year. Incidentally, that lap time is the ninth fastest time by a road-legal car at the circuit.

Former Formula 1 driver Sébastien Buemi will be behind the wheel of the NIssan GT-R Nismo when it attempts its laps at the Nurburgring. With Nissan promising to get the GT-R Nismo to hit 0-60 mph in just two seconds, it opens up a world of possibilities on how fast the supercar can tackle the Nurburgring.

Whether it can beat the record GT-R time remains to be seen, but from the looks of things, it’s certainly in play.

Click past the 2015 Nissan GT-R Nismo after the jump

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The Nissan 370Z was the first model to get the comprehensive Nismo upgrade from the revered tuning arm of the Japanese auto giant. Long housed in an anonymous mid-rise factory with only a bright red door to signal something special inside, the Nismo team is spreading its wings with further upgrades to normal Nissan models.

The best-known work from these honorable speed demons is, of course, the GT-R . As we will see, this is not a team who adds some stickers and a lightly revised ECU to cars that don the "Nismo" badge.

The pitfalls of creating a performance spin-off series are many. Too much change and the price can nearly double, cutting volume by four in the process. The previous Cadillac CTS-V suffered such a fate.

On the other side of the spectrum; too little enhancement, and the car is dismissed as badge and stickers job by those in the know. So there is a fine line to walk between the loaded 370Z Touring’s $38,000 price and the $43,000 base of the Nismo version.

After some seat time and some driving videos (viewable below), the 370Z Nismo is unlike any other Z-car driven to date. It features extensively restyled bodywork from every angle, a far lower ride height, and exhaust drums so large they might be packing oil reserves.

For those with allegiance to only hardcore performance, the 370Z Nismo really trumps the equivalent Genesis Coupe R-Spec s and Camaro s of the performance world. An apt comparison would be to the previous Ford Mustang Boss 302 that was basically a Laguna Seca time attack special.

The spec sheet of the 370Z shows how busy the Nismo team was in revamping the Z-car to its standards. This is far more than a body and paint shop; this car is purpose-built from the body-in-white chassis upward by Nismo.

Click past the jump for the full TopSpeed Driven review of the 2014 Nissan 370Z NISMO, including a few videos of driving impressions.

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The new Pathfinder is lighting up the sales charts with its seven seats and a newly luxurious, efficient and smooth driving experience. Far from going soft, the Pathfinder is still able to do all the truck-like things that made its previous body-on-frame models so memorable.

The TopSpeed Garage is much classier with the 2014 Pathfinder Platinum in "valet 1st position" out front.

Have kid-friendly features totally stomped out the lenedary toughness of the chiseled hardbody Nissan SUV’s from the 1980s? The irrelevance of this question is pretty clear. This is a business, and Nissan knows it.

We’re thrilled to report that the Pathfinder has not lost its way.

Guiding the trails like it did as one of the first semi-premium, imported SUVs in the 1980s, the Pathfinder is on a new trail now — a much smoother trail. One that has dual video monitors in back, a sliding/reclining second row to stretch out with the wireless headphones, and even a heated rear seats for the ultimate in couch potato lounge amenities in back.

But what about the irritating and non-premium character of most previous CVT automatics?

As confessed CVT haters and without rug-rats (yet), our expectations were quite mixed before the 2014 Pathfinder Platinum rolled into the TopSpeed Garage . The latest CVT automatic is standard and truly is a new breed of lightweight and economical transmissions, and we took a quick video of a brake torque launch to show how snappy this new Xtronic box is.

Click past the jump for the full TopSpeed Garage review of the 2014 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4x4, by far one of the most impressive seven-seat crossovers on the market.

Posted on by Simona  

In the automotive world, we see all kinds of tests and wacky comparisons, putting the most craziest things against one another. We have to admit that this newest competition lauched by Nissan ranks pretty highly in creativity. Nissan pitted its resident sports car against a man in a wingsuit.

Peter Pyzera — the 2012 Nissan GT Academy champion — took the wheel of the 2014 Nissan 370Z Nismo and legendary wingsuit athlete, Dave Barlia, took the leap of faith in the Swiss Alps.

Barlia had to make a 4,510-foot drop, and he hit a top speed of 130 mph, while clearing the rocky surface by just 19.6 feet. Along with him on this scary descent is Jukeride, which is a unique analysis tool that allowed the engineers to monitor biometric and telematic data as he glided to earth.

Check out the video (above) to see whether the Nismo or the wingsuit triumphed.

Click past the jump to see some behind-the-scenes footage.

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The Nissan GT-R is by far Japan’s longest-running and most-talked-about supercar. Even in the face of an all-new hybrid NSX and the shrieking Lexus LF-A ’s V-10, the magic of the GT-R formula continues to fascinate and captivate car guys and gals across the world.

The latest R35 Nissan GT-R is the most accomplished in the family lineage by not only dominating the press in Asia and Australia — where the previous-gen cars were sold — but also taking headlines across America and Europe.

And the headlines are good. Not the standard "newcomer tries to beat Porsche , loses" we are all so familiar with. The GT-R is a machine that wins objective and subjective comparison tests against some of the absolute quickest and highest-tech machines in the world.

It has taken two generations of 911 Turbo models to get anywhere near the GT-R’s pace, and the $100,000 Nissan also regularly spanks Ferrari’s finest .

So much so that Porsche and Ferrari will no longer let one of their cars be in a comparo with the GT-R . Now that is an achievement.

So where to go with this legend of a race car? Keep the world-beating pace and all the latest component upgrades from the forthcoming GT-R Nismo , but improve the weight balance, center of gravity, aerodynamics and style.

A daunting task, to say the least. Luckily, the TopSpeed artists and graphic design team have created a few exclusive previews of where the GT-R’s styling will go in the next generations.

Tagged a 2016 Nissan GT-R, these renderings are purely speculative design studies. The ideas presented here are still quite interesting, with two distinct flavors of modern GT-R from which to select your favorite.

Click past the jump for a closer look at these TopSpeed exclusive previous of the next-gen Nissan GT-R.

Update 3/13/2014: A possible leaked image and insider information puts the 2016 GT-R at over 800 horsepower and gives it a whole new look. See more after the jump.

Posted on by Simona  

Hennessey took its powerful Venom GT and the Nissan GTR HPE750 to Circuit Of The Americas for some media rides during the ALMS and WEC races on September 20th and 21st. This video shows the Venom GT in action on the famous F1 circuit and it was filmed with a GoPro camera installed on the GT-R.

As you probably know by now, the Venom GT is based on a Lotus Exige and it’s powered by a Corvette ZR1 -sourced 6.2-liter, supercharged V-8 engine. In its base setup, this engine delivers a total of 725 horsepower, but in the top version it can be raised to 1,200 horsepower. The Venom GT can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 2.5 seconds and to 200 mph in 15.9 seconds. The tuner reported a top speed of 275 mph.

While the sound is not at its best quality, the video is surely worth watching, so enjoy!

With every passing year, compact cars seem to get better and better, so it’s no surprise that the the Sentra is not the same entry-level, cheapo Nissan it used to be. Our Sentra tester is fitted with the SR trim package, which adds in plenty of bells and whistles that you would expect from a more expensive vehicle, including keyless entry, push-button start and navigation. The best part is the price; at $21,550 as tested, the Sentra SR offers plenty of bang for your buck.

The Sentra SR’s exterior is very well appointed with LED headlight surrounds, sport front and rear bumpers, and side skirts that look like they belong in "The Fast and the Furious" series. Even the alloy wheels look pretty good for the price.

What really pulls the whole exterior together is that Electric Metallic Blue paint that we last saw on the 370Z a few years back. Sure, it’s not a Ferrari, but there’s a lot to take in for the price point.

Nissan Sentra SR

The interior is a not quite as satisfying as the outside, but the push-button start and navigation system for under $22k, we’re not complaining.

The seats are cloth, but they look good for the class, and the dash is padded with the more expensive, soft plastic. Add to that trimming that doesn’t feel like it was stamped in the same Chinese factory as your iPhone case, and the overall interior package is fairly attractive. Top that with good rear leg room, nice visibility all around and folding rear seats, and you have a flexible product with very little compromises.

On the road, the Sentra drives okay, but with a CVT driving the front wheels, it is not an overly exhilarating experience. The leather-wrapped steering wheel feels better than a lot of more expensive cars, and the CVT does a good job at limiting torque steer and unwanted movement in the steering wheel.

The suspension is comfortable for daily use, but it also allows you to take corners with confidence. We even caught ourselves taking a few corners fast enough to get a little feedback from the tires, which added a some extra fun to the drive. Is it Porsche fun? No, but it is above average for the econo-box class.

Overall The Nissan Sentra SR gives you a lot for your money. On the outside, it looks good enough to prevent your buddies from chuckling at you when you roll up in it, and inside, you have plenty of premium features to keep you happy for years to come.

Of course, with the 2014 Toyota Corolla debuting a sporty look, your choice of entry-level sedans is getting harder.

Toyota Corolla
Toyota Corolla
Nissan Sentra SR
Posted on by Simona  

Unlike most of the watches you have seen featured here at TopSpeed, this new Nismo watch was not inspired by a car, but it was specially developed to for drivers of Nissan Nismo cars. Even though it is just a concept for now, the new watch will connect the driver to his car, and will provide drivers with real-time biometric data.

Thanks to the new watch, the driver will have real data on the car’s average speed and fuel consumption readings, and performance data while on track.

When put into production, the watch will be offered in black, white or the flagship black and red featured on the concept. The watch’s futuristic design was inspired by the Nismo ring, and it features a simple user interface that you can control by two buttons. To make life easier, it is secured onto the driver’s wrist via a simple snap-fit mechanism.

Click past the jump to read more about the Nissan Juke Nismo.


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