It's not often that we welcome a long-term tester so popular with staffers that it never remains parked overnight at our office. It's even more rare for said tester to be a bona fide supercar, tried and proven as a legitimate Ferrari-Porsche-Lamborghini annihilator. Such was the case with our Super Silver Nissan Gt R
Premium, which we enjoyed, flaunted, and admired every day of its yearlong test.
The GT-R's popularity is understandable. Its storied lineage dates back more than four decades and includes all-wheel-drive monsters that ate up the competition -- hence, the Godzilla nickname. Further, our long-termer's combination of futuristic, controversial sheetmetal and spellbinding, Nurburgring-bred performance for well under $100,000 is indeed exceptional. The GT-R's body drips with Japanese functionality, while paying homage to the natural world and famous ancestors. Most staffers considered themselves fans of the standout shape, which attracted innumerable stares, upturned thumbs, and shouts from balconies (really, that happened). A few, though, thought it too chunky for a sports car of such magnificent stature. Regardless of opinion, wherever it rolled, it made a bold statement.
There's no denying the twin-turbocharged, 485-horsepower coupe is the consummate athlete: muscular in build, powerful in stance and vigor, and crafted specifically for constant physical exertion. We never grew tired of the 3.5-second 0-to-60-mph sprints this beast nonchalantly laid down, nor took for granted the unimaginable quickness of its six-speed twin-clutch transmission or the vice-like power from the racing-derived 15-inch Brembo brakes. Sure, there have been a few highly publicized instances of NISSAN GT R
gearbox failure, but we experienced no trouble with our model's unit after a year of tough driving, including about 40 full-bore acceleration launches. Let us repeat that last bit: no trouble at all.
We also never grew tired of its uncanny personality. As docile as a NISSAN SENTRA
when trotting through town, the NISSAN GT R
proved tame and collected when commanded, with none of the expected supercar demerits in terms of livability and usefulness. Click off a double-downshift with the slim magnesium left paddle, throw the NISSAN GT R
into a corner, and its pent-up ferocity immediately transfers to its four huge Bridgestones. No other sports car at the GT-R's price can match its utility and performance credentials.