Here’s Why The Nissan GT-R R35 Is, Once Again, The Bargain Sports Car It Once Was - story fullscreen Fullscreen

Here’s Why The Nissan GT-R R35 Is, Once Again, The Bargain Sports Car It Once Was

The Nissan GT-R may not be the hottest sports car in 2022, but it’s one of the best high-performance offerings on the used market

The topic of the Nissan GT-R is as trite as worn-out jeans in the 1980s. There’s no hiding the fact that the R35 GT-R is an old car now, and is painfully outdated compared to what the competition has brought. However, back in 2007, GT-R made a comeback and offered supercar-rivaling performance for half the price of a Porsche 911 Turbo. And, in 2022, buying a brand new GT-R isn’t as justifiable as it once was, but buying a used one seems to be the most sensible, non-sensible decision you can make, and here’s why.

The Price

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When talking about bargain performance cars, the main thing to talk about is the price. Back in 2008, a brand new Nissan GT-R had an MSRP of $78,000. As time went by, the numerous revisions to the R35, brought the price up to a point where it was no longer the bargain supercar-slayer it once was. And, let’s not talk about the GT-R V-Spec and GT-R NISMO versions, some of which break the $140,000 barrier. Its main competitor, the Porsche 911 Turbo started from $137,000, and as good as the 997 Turbo is, the GT-R managed to beat it in every measurable category, along with other competitors.

The biggest bang for the buck?

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Currently, a five-year-old Nissan GT-R with about 30,000 miles on the odometer will set you back around $91,000. For comparison, in 2016, a Nissan GT-R cost $101,770. This equates to just over 10-percent of depreciation over a five-year period. In both cases, that is a lot of money, but the GT-R immediately becomes steel once you see what other five-year-old car with similar performance you can buy for the same amount.

Porsche 911 Turbo? For around $91,000, you will be looking at a 2007-2010 Porsche 997 Turbo with around 30,000 miles. Its 3.6-liter (3.8 on 997.2) twin-turbo flat-six provides 480 to 530 horsepower and 457 to 516 pound-feet (620-700 Nm), depending on the year. If you want a PDK, you have to look for a 2008 or newer, and if you are lucky, you might even find a manual car.

When it comes to newer Porsche 911s, $91,000 can get you a 2015 Porsche 911, but it will not be a Turbo. At best, it would be a 991 Carrera S or 4S. With 400 horsepower and 324 pound-feet (440 Nm) from the 3.8-liter naturally-aspirated flat-six, it would not be able to match a 2016 GT-R’s 550 horsepower and 466 pound-feet (632 Nm), from its 3.8-liter twin-turbo V-6.

Old, but proven platform

Here's Why The Nissan GT-R R35 Is, Once Again, The Bargain Sports Car It Once Was
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The R35-generation of the Nissan GT-R was introduced in 2007. Numerous revisions allowed the car to stay in production well into 2022, but there’s no hiding the fact, it’s an old platform. During the GT-R’s, so far, 15-year production run, the Porsche 911 had three different generations – 997, 991, and 992. Stock for stock, even a 2022 Nissan GT-R is outdated and outgunned, compared to a 2022 Porsche 911 Turbo.

Having an old platform can certainly be off-putting when looking for the next high-performance vehicle. However, what the GT-R lacks in straight-line acceleration, it more than makes up with an amazing, Lotus-designed chassis and physics-defying handling. With a GT-R, it’s worth mentioning the tuning potential and as the numerous builds with well over 2,000 horsepower suggest, there’s plenty of that. Moreover, the GT-R prides itself on being reliable and featuring stout mechanicals.

As with any car, of course, it’s a question of good maintenance and the way it’s being used. More track-use would, naturally, spell more wear and more repairs, especially if not accompanied with more frequent maintenance intervals.

Is the Nissan GT-R a future classic?

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Looking at the current trends, there’s a good chance the R35 GT-R could be a potentially good investment. Even in the GT-R family, the R35 is currently the most sensible of all GT-Rs. The R34 GT-R is considered the halo car of the GT-R family, but with good-condition R34 GT-Rs going for $60,000 and above, for a regular one (without import taxes), the much more powerful R35 makes a lot more sense, especially when you don’t have to import one.

Unlike the other aspects of the GT-R, only time will tell if prices go up enough for it to become a potential investment. One thing is certain – just like older GT-Rs, finding an unmodified R35 is becoming increasingly difficult, so those would be the ones to look out for, at least until an R36 GT-R comes along.

Dim Angelov
Dim Angelov
Born in 1992, I come from a family of motoring enthusiasts. My passion for cars was awoken at the age of six, when I saw a Lamborghini Diablo SV in a magazine. After high school I earned a master’s degree in marketing and a Master of Arts in Media and Communications. Over the years, I’ve practiced and become skilled in precision driving and to date have test driven more than 250 cars across the globe. Over the years, I’ve picked up basic mechanical knowledge and have even taken part in the restoration of a 1964 Jaguar E-Type and an Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint. Lately, I’ve taken a fancy to automotive photography, and while modern cars are my primary passion, I also have a love for Asian Martial Arts, swimming, war history, craft beer, historical weapons, and car restoration. In time, I plan my own classic car restoration and hope to earn my racing certificate, after which I expect to establish my own racing team.  Read full bio
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