Tickets to the 2020 Tokyo Auto Salon Will Include a Tomica Nissan GT-R NISMO GT500
If you’re attending the Tokyo Auto Salon on January 10, you can score a Nissan GT-R NISMO GT500 race car if you order tickets to the show early. No, you’re not getting an actual GT-R NISMO GT500 race car. Instead, you’re receiving a toy version of the racer courtesy of Japanese toy car maker Tomica. Pre-sale tickets for Friday, January 10, will cost 4,000 yen or around $37 based on current exchange rates. The cost of the ticket already includes the Tomica GT-R NISMO GT500. Costs of tickets for Saturday, January 11, and Sunday, January 12 add up to 3,000 yen or almost $28. If you’re not looking to score the Tomica GT-R NISMO GT500, the cost of tickets for January 10 is 3,000 yen and only 2,000 yen ($18.5) for January 11 and 12.
2019 Nissan LEAF NISMO RC
The new Nissan Leaf Nismo RC is as much a race car as it is a PR stunt. Yes, it builds on the experience Nissan gained by developing the first race-going Leaf only it doesn’t actually go racing anywhere. Nissan says six will be built and, with 327 horsepower and 472 pound-feet of torque on tap, it’s quite a beast but it’s not homologated for any series, and it will never be, so what is really the point?
The Nissan Leaf is without a shadow of a doubt the most successful EV car on the market today. Since its introduction in 2010, nearly 400,000 units have been sold worldwide and, as of October 2018, the U.S. is the Leaf’s biggest fan, buying over 126,000 examples in the first ten months of this year. It’s natural, then, to see Nissan partner with Nismo and create a new racing rendition of this eco-friendly compact car.
The first Leaf Nismo RC, that was unveiled back in 2011, looked like a big lump of fat. It was round in all areas and was about as aggressive as a pufferfish. With technology still in its infancy, the output wasn’t ground-shaking either: a little over 100 horsepower and about 200 pound-feet of torque. But it taught Nissan some important lessons about EVs and, so, we’ve expected a lot more from this new car, and we’ve got a whole lot more. There will also be more than one built but there’s still an issue: Nissan won’t enter the Leaf Nismo RC in any racing series since it doesn’t comply to any set of regulations in the world. It’s a test mule, which is a bit sad.
Why Can’t the 2019 Nissan Leaf Look Like This Leaf Nismo RC?
In 2011, Nissan unveiled what was called the Nissan Leaf Nismo RC - an electric racer made of carbon fiber, with a propulsion system partially borrowed from the production Nissan Leaf and with exterior touches reminiscent of the Nissan electric car. Fast forward to this day, and we’re looking at a new Nissan Leaf Nismo RC. It looks better, it is much quicker, and only eight examples will be produced.
While some of the tech inside is clearly amazing, one has to wonder, why can’t the 2019 Nissan Leaf Look like this Leaf Nismo RC?
2019 Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3
As the current Nissan GT-R is preparing for retirement with a new, hybrid-powered model underway, the race-spec Nismo GT3 was upgraded for the 2019 racing season.
Last revised in 2015, the GT-R Nismo GT3 has now received a new aerodynamic package on the outside and borrowed the recent changes that Nissan rolled out for the road-legal sports car. The race car also boasts an upgraded chassis that includes new suspension components, more durable brakes, and a more reliable transmission. That vehicle that has won many races in series like the Blancpain GT Series and the Super GT, just to name a few, will hit the track with these new upgrades for the 2019 season.
Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3.
Nissan Shows Off Cool Formula E Nismo Livery in Geneva
A small series that didn’t get too much attention a few years ago, Formula E has become quite the big thing. Larger automakers all over the world are now interested in the series, with Audi, Jaguar, Renault, and Mahindra already competing this season. In addition, Venturi, DS, Nio, and Andretti run their own team. Although the 2017-2018 season is far from over, the FIA is already rounding up the lineup for the next championship and has already introduced the second-generation Formula E car at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. Here, three competitors unveiled their liveries for next season, including Nissan, which joins the championship for the very first time.
2017 Nissan GT-R Nismo GT500
The current Nissan GT-R, also known as the R35, was introduced in 2007 as a successor to the popular R34. Redesigned from the ground up, the R35 set many new benchmarks for the GT-R nameplate. It’s the first to no longer feature the Skyline name and the first GT-R to use a V-6 engine (previous generations have used inline-six units). More importantly, it’s the first GT-R offered globally, being exported to the U.S. and giving Nissan unprecedented popularity in the sports car market. Finally, it is also the longest-running GT-R model. While previous versions were produced for three to five years, the R35 is ten years old as of 2017. Although a bit long in the tooth, the current GT-R is still making headlines on both the road and the track, the latter fueled by numerous versions prepped by Nismo. One of them is the GT500 and it just received an update for the 2017 racing season.
Used by Nissan in Japan’s top-spec Super GT racing division since 2008, the GT-R has brought the company five championship triumphs in nine years. However, after winning the series in 2014 and 2015, the GT-R was defeated by Lexus and its RC F-based GT500 race car in 2016. Nissan wants to fix that in 2017, which brought significant modifications to the GT500 rule book, with a revised version of its Nismo-built, race-ready GT-R.
"We will make further development improvements during off-season tests and aim to create a race car that will shine brilliantly within the history of motorsports," said president and CEO of Nismo, Takao Katagiri. "We hope to thrill fans with a fast, more appealing GT-R that will excite fans as it lines up on the grid for the opening round competing against the new Lexus and Honda machines."
The new GT-R GT500 was unveiled at the Twin Ring Motegi along with entries for rival companies Lexus and Honda, and was showcased once again at the Nismo Festival at Fuji Speedway in December. The 2017 Super GT Series is scheduled to begin in April.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Nissan GT-R GT500.
BMW And Nissan Plan To Enter Formula E
Nissan and BMW are reportedly preparing to join the all-electric Formula E series. According to Autosport, the two manufacturers are in talks with existing teams to join the series as early as next season, which is scheduled to commence on October 9, 2016, in Hong Kong.
Nissan, which axed its LMP1 program in 2015, would need approval from the Renault-Nissan Alliance, which also oversees the Renault e.Dams team. BMW, on the other hand, would have to change its position on the series’ dependence on mid-race car swaps, the main reason it ruled out a Formula E program in the past.
The only certainty right now is that if Nissan or BMW commit to entering Formula E in 2016, neither would be allowed to develop its own drivetrain, meaning a tie-up is their only realistic chance of joining for season three.
If it joins the series, Nissan will become the first Japanese manufacturer to do so. On the other hand, BMW will be the second German maker as the European country is already represented by ABT Audi Sport.
The current grid for the 2016/2017 season includes 10 teams from France, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, India, Monaco, and China. The latest brand to join Formula E is Jaguar. Next season’s calendar includes 14 venues in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North and South America. Both Montreal and New York will host two races. The season is scheduled to begin on October 9, 2016, and come to a close on July 30, 2017.
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Valentine’s Day Special – Spread The Car Love
There’s really one good reason you’re reading these words right now – you love cars. Non-car people don’t get it. They laugh and roll their eyes, calling it a waste of time to fix up that old beater, a waste of money to get out to the track for another weekend. That’s ok – let ‘em. Of course it doesn’t make sense to them. They don’t know the joy of finally getting an engine to spark back to life. They don’t know the thrill of setting a new personal best lap time. Too bad for them.
In celebration of Valentine’s Day, we’ve assembled five videos that are sure to remind you why you love cars. We’ve got a little bit of everything here, from Euro speed to Japanese tech, ground-up rebuilds to expansive muscle car car collections.
So sit back, hit play, and when you’re done, treat yourself to a drive.
Continue reading to check out the videos.
The Nissan GT-R LM Nismo has to be one of the oddest cars out there. Let’s face it – a front engine configuration, front-wheel drive, plus its weird overall design – the car really didn’t fit in well amongst the other racers. Back in June when the GT-R LM debuted at Le Mans, technical difficulties led to it running without its hybrid system. Back on October 1st, Nissan said it was working on the associated problems and that the GT-R LM would be ready for the FIA World Endurance Championship in 2016. Those plans have changed, and it’s likely we’ll never see the car in this form again.
Official word has come down from the powers that be, and the GT-R LM Nismo project has officially been canned. Surely this wasn’t an easy decision, but Nissan has released a statement saying, “The teams worked diligently to bring the vehicles up to the desired performance levels. However, the company concluded that the program would not be able to reach its ambitions and decided to focus on developing its longer term racing strategies.”
It’s unfortunate the project has been completely cancelled, though Nissan has confirmed it will “focus on developing its longer term racing strategies.” This gives hope that Nissan will return someday with a prototype that will live up to the hype the company spreads. Until then, we’ll have to sit back and enjoy the FIA World Endurance Championship without the GT-R LM Nismo.
Continue reading for the full story.
Gentex Corporation, a company known for manufacturing military helmets, respiratory, and electro-acoustic products, has just introduced a Full Display Mirror system for OEM applications at the 2015 SEMA Show. Composed of glare-eliminating exterior mirrors and a high-dynamic range imager, video of the vehicle’s rearward view is captured and streamed to a unique mirror-integrated display. This new system was showcased on the Nissan GT-R LM Nismo race car.
The technology has already made its debut on the Japanese prototype racer during the 24 Hours of Le Mans earlier in 2015 and will become available for OEM applications by the end of the year. The Full Display Mirror system replaces the standard rearwiew mirror with an LCD display that captures video footage from a camera mounted on the GT-R LM’s massive fin. The combo allows the driver to see what goes around behind his car despite not having a rear windscreen.
Although Gentex doesn’t provide details as to which manufacturers will use the Full Display Mirror in the future, it does say it will soon be found in passenger cars.
"Our work on the Nissan race car pushed our development teams and our integration engineers to design a Full Display Mirror system that could handle the ultimate test of performance in the 24 hours of Le Mans. This development work helped us perfect our Full Display Mirror system, which we just began shipping for OEM applications this quarter,” said Craig Piersma, Gentex director of marketing.
Though it was originally developed for the race track, the Full Display Mirror could be used to improve rearward visibility of a wide range of road-going sports cars. The Porsche Cayman, Nissan 370Z, and Chevrolet Camaro are just a few of the vehicles that could benefit from this product. But, until mainstream automakers adopt this technology, let’s have a closer look at how it works in the video above.
So far, Nissan has yet to clinch ultimate victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but it’s not for lack of trying. The Japanese automaker made its initial debut at the prestigious racing event in 1986, with best results achieved in 1998 with a third-place podium from the #32 R390 GT1 car driven by Kazuyoshi Hoshino, Aguri Suzuki, and Masahiko Kageyama. A year later, Nissan opted to simply provide engines rather than field full prototype racers.
Now, after a 16-year departure from the top echelon of endurance racing, Nissan is back with one of the most unusual cars to ever take the grid. At first glance, the GT-R LM NISMO looks totally unlike its main rivals, and for good reason – while the other marques all feature mid-mounted engines and RWD, the GT-R LM places its engine ahead of the cockpit and uses FWD.
This setup is the brainchild of Team Principal and Technical Director Ben Bowlby, also known for creating the All American Racers DeltaWing and the ZEOD RC. Nissan calls it the “ultimate GT-R," but with such a radical reinterpretation of the rulebook, will it have a fighting chance against the current crop of proven machinery from Audi, Porsche, and Toyota?
Updated 10/01/2015: Back in June the Nissan GT-R LM NISMO made its race debut at Le Mans. However, the car featured some technical difficulties and it had to race without its hybrid system engaged. Now, Nissan announced that the team has been working hard to address these technical issues and that the GT-R LM NISMO is ready to make its race return at the FIA World Endurance Championship in 2016.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Nissan GT-R LM NISMO.
It’s Friday, the day of the week companies like to unload all their bad news because fewer people are paying attention, or so goes that line of thinking. Today’s bad news comes courtesy of Nissan, which announced that it’s delaying its return to the World Endurance Championship, following the many technical issues that plagued the 2015 Nissan GT-R LM Nismo’s debut at the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The problems centered around the GT-R LM’s non-functioning energy recovery system, meaning the three cars entered were powered solely by their 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6s, putting them at a significant disadvantage compared to the Audi, Porsche and Toyota hybrid prototypes. The power deficit meant the Nissans were getting overtaken by LM P2 cars on the Mulsanne Straight, and because the ERS wasn’t functioning, the front brake pads also had to be replaced more frequently than planned. The ERS was to power the rear axle as well, but Nissan quietly shelved those plans in the lead-up to the race.
“We know people will be disappointed, but be assured that nobody is more disappointed than us,” said Nismo boss Shoichi Miyatani. “We are racers and we want to compete, but we also want to be competitive. That is why we have chosen to continue our test program and prepare the GT-R LM NISMO for the strong competition we face in the World Endurance Championship. When you innovate, you don’t give up at the first hurdle. We are committed to overcoming this challenge.”
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For a team that nobody really expected to win at Le Mans, Nissan sure got a lot of attention this year. But that’s pretty understandable, as Nissan’s LMP1 car, the 2015 Nissan GT-R LM Nismo, is pure lunacy on wheels. The front-engine and front-wheel-drive machine is unlike anything else that was competing at La Sarthe. The car is still very much a work in progress, so where it finished in the race wasn’t as important as it just making it the full 24 hours, which it did manage to do. Good thing too, because it was very, very slow compared to all of the other LMP1 cars, and even a lot of the LMP2 and LMGTE cars.
What was most perplexing to most racing fans though, was the question of what it must be like to try and drive something with such an insanely long hood on a racetrack, especially one as crowed as this. The video here shows some in-car footage of the GT-R LM Nismo being driven at Le Mans at dusk, and it certainly doesn’t look easy. It’s not the first racecar to offer poor visibility, but it’s still something you have to see to believe.
Nissan has been incredibly open with the development of its bizarre front-engine, front-wheel-drive science experiment, the 2016 Nissan GT-R LM Nismo, and now the team is preparing to make its race debut in one of the racing world’s toughest arenas, at the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans. In this latest video, Nissan drivers and engineers discuss the progress that’s been made since the first Le Mans test session earlier this month.
The team has found some time since arriving at Le Mans but there’s still a long way to go. The fastest of the three Nissans, the No. 23 car of Olivier Pla, Jann Mardenborough and Max Chilton, posted a 3:38.468 in the first qualifying session, a roughly five-second improvement over its best time during the test day. However, that’s still over 20 seconds adrift of the blindingly fast time set by Neel Jani in one of the 2015 Porsche 919 Hybrids in the same session.
There are still a few more qualifying and practice sessions before the race itself, but, barring three Porsches, three Audis and two Toyotas all suffering catastrophic failures, don’t expect to see the Nissans vying for the race win this weekend. The team won’t say it, but they’re likely looking at this weekend’s race as a 24-hour practice session, in which they will try to learn as much as possible before the WEC season continues. The GT-R LM Nismo has completed several 24-hour race simulations at NCM Motorsports Park (near the Corvette factory of all places) in Bowling Green, Kentucky, so the durability should be there to get them to the end.
The GT-R LM Nismo is a radical rethink of the Le Mans prototype formula. The front-engine, front-wheel-drive layout is unique in a field of mid-engine race cars. Its 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 combines with a flywheel kinetic-energy recovery system to produce around 1,250 horsepower, and Nissan says the lack of an engine in the back cleans up aerodynamics around the rear bodywork. It’s weird, but that’s why we love it.
With the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans only a couple of days away, the teams are gearing up for what promises to be one of the most spectacular races of the year. While drivers and engineers are giving their best during qualifying, the PR teams are making sure there’s enough buzz to keep enthusiasts excited ahead of Saturday’s green flag. We’ve already seen Toyota showcasing all of its Le Mans attempts since 1985, but now it’s time to check out Nissan’s latest video of the 2015 Nissan GT-R LM Nismo.
Though it might not be as spectacular as watching Toyota racing prototypes evolving over the course of three decades, Nissan’s "Scrutineering Timelapse" shows what happens when entrants exhibit their vehicles in the town of Le Mans. There’s a lot of packing and unpacking going on, as well as a media event that includes presenting the team that will soon take to the track.
As a brief reminder, the Nissan GT-R LM Nismo is one of the more exotic competitors of this year’s LMP1 battle. With its engine mounted at the front and power routed to the front wheels, it uses a layout Le Mans hasn’t seen for more than five decades. For the uninitiated, most LMP1 prototypes are either rear- or all-wheel-drive and have their engines mounted behind the seats.
We will find out whether Nismo’s out-of-the-box approach will make a significant impact on the track this weekend. The race begins Saturday, June 13th, at 8 AM EST, and ends Sunday, exactly 24 hours later.
To commemorate Nissan’s return to top-flight racing at the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans, watchmaker Tag Heuer has released a new timepiece called the Carrera “NISMO” special edition, and while it might not be powered by a 1,250-horsepower hybrid drivetrain like the GT-R LM Nismo race car, it is a pretty slick watch. The watch will be worn during the race by the entire Nissan P1 driver lineup, as well as actor-turned-race-car-driver Patrick Dempsey and P2 drivers Ho-Pin Tung and Karun Chandhock.
The watch itself is similar to other Tag Heuer Carrera watches. It has a 43 mm titanium face in black that’s been micro-blasted with titanium carbide. I’m not exactly sure what that does but it sounds pretty cool. Grey and red stripes run vertically down the left side of the face, and as you know, stripes make everything faster. A scratch-proof ceramic bezel surrounds the face and houses a sapphire crystal. The back has a Nismo decal, and a matte-black alligator strap with red accents keeps it all attached to your wrist.
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The front tires of the 2015 Nissan GT-R LM Nismo have a really hard job. Not only are they tasked with the majority of braking and turning duties like other Le Mans prototype racers, but they also have to put down 1,250 horsepower produced by its twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6 and flywheel-based energy reclamation system. Despite sounding like a machine designed specifically to vaporize racing tires, designer Ben Bowlby says the car is actually relatively easy on its front rubber.
Working with the team at Nissan, Michelin has developed a bespoke set of tires, 14 inches wide at the front and just 9 inches wide at the rear. The ratio between the two is the same as the Nismo GT-R’s 65-to-35 front-to-rear weight distribution, which is achieved thanks to the car’s unusual front-engine layout. It’s a weird setup, but Nissan anticipates the fronts will last two to three fuel stints at Le Mans, which is more or less on par with other P1 teams. Crucially however, the rears can last up to nine stints because they have so little work to do. That means the rears may only need to be replaced three or four times over the course this year’s entire 24-hour race, saving an estimated 24 seconds per pit stop.
The unusual setup also allows for some interesting aerodynamic features, which Nissan hopes will give it an advantage. The lack of an engine in the rear creates room for two “tunnels” that run the length of the car on either side, allowing air to flow through the GT-R LM rather than around it. This is enhanced by the rear tires, which, because of their smaller aerodynamic profile, allow for better airflow around the rear bodywork.
So, how’s it working so far? Honestly, not all that well. The fastest of the three Nissans was some 20 seconds off the pace set by the fastest Porsche 919 at this year’s Le Mans test day, and was slower than several P2 cars. We’ll find out if the team learned any new tricks new when the GT-R LM makes its race debut later this week at the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Virtual racers looking to make the transition to a real-life pro-racing career via the GT Academy program can now obtain Nissan’s highly anticipated GT-R LM NISMO P1 racing machine for digital hot lapping in Gran Turismo 6.
The technological powerhouse GT-R is available to those taking part in the fourth and final round of online GT Academy Qualifiers. All participants in the fourth round will receive the car for free simply by completing a single lap, regardless of lap time.
The GT-R’s availability in GT6 coincides with its upcoming competition debut outside the gaming world at the 83rd running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race. A total of three GT-R LM NISMO racers will be run in the prestigious event.
With its premiere track test occurring in November of last year, the GT-R LM NISMO is Nissan’s first foray into the world of enduros in 16 years. Under the guidance of Team Principal and Technical Director Ben Bowlby, also know for masterminding the All American Racers DeltaWing and ZEOD RC, the car sports an unusual front-engine, FWD layout, a concept that flies in the face of conventional LM P1 racing practices.
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After a 16-year break from the biggest event in endurance racing, Nissan will once again return to the Circuit de la Sarthe for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, this time with a trio of unusual race cars aimed at upending convention in the LM P1 class.
In case you weren’t already aware, Nissan’s entries will sport a number of features that are a clean break from the usual prototype racer. Most notable are the driveline layouts, which will be front-engine and FWD, rather than the usual mid-engine, RWD/AWD layout found in top competitors from the likes of Audi and Porsche.
Taking the helm will be an international assemblage of nine drivers plucked from the ranks of Formula One and sports car racing. Nissan will also source hot-shoes from its GT Academy, a competition program that offers Gran Turismo gamers the chance to take their virtual skills into the real world with a shot at a pro racing career.
Behind the wheel of the #23 car will be ex-F1 racer Max Chilton, GT Academy winner and GP3 competitor Jann Mardenborough, and sports car star Olivier Pla. Meanwhile, NISMO athlete Michael Krumm, LM P2 Le Mans-winner Harry Ticknell, and GT Academy ace Alex Buncombe will be assigned the #22 car. Finally, the #21 car, which is draped in a special red, white, and blue livery to commemorate the Nissan R90CK that managed to clinch a pole position at Le Mans 25 years ago, will be driven by current Super GT Champion Tsugio Matsuda, premiere GT Academy winner and current Super GT500 competitor Lucas Ordonez, and the first GT Academy Russia winner, Mark Shulzhitskiy.
Look for the three Nissan GT-R LM NISMOs to take the track on Wednesday, June 10th, for the free practice session. Qualifying gets underway a bit later on Wednesday and runs into Thursday evening, followed by the official start of the 83rd 24 Hours of Le Mans on Saturday, June 13th.
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