2014 Nissan GT-R Walk Around
Visually, the Nissan GT-R appears unimaginative. It doesn't carry the elegance of a Ferrari or the ostentatious nature of a Lamborghini. It's functional and purposeful and its aggressive stance portrays a swagger and attitude of a machine that doesn't really care about its inferior looks. It was designed to do one thing and do it really well. And that is go blisteringly fast.
The fish-like front grille not only channels air to the intercooler and radiators but it is designed to increase front downforce and reduce lift. The lower grille opening provides a home for two side-mounted scoops to cool the enormous Brembo brakes. The polished black spoiler wraps around the chin of the car providing additional front downforce to help combat the cars inherent understeer. The hood has two functional scoops on top, in-between the narrow slick-back front headlights.
The front fender swoops back to the extractor vent just behind the front wheel with the GT-R symbol sitting atop a brushed silver badge overhead. The door handles are nicely integrated and a handy black button is directly adjacent, enabling you to open the door without removing the key from your pocket.
The polished black spoiler from the front continues around the side and behind the rear wheels. At the top of the door the car tightens up at the waist, housing the frameless door windows and fixed rear quarter windows as they taper back to a point. The 20-inch, six-spoke polished black wheels on our Black Edition test car covered the orange Brembo calipers on the 15.4-inch front and 15.0-inch rear floating rotors with diamond-pattern internal ventilation.
From the rear view the GT-R sports a mean appearance. It bears a monster quad exhaust system and four circular taillights, two on each side. The Black Edition we tested is topped with a dry carbon-fiber rear spoiler, on the Premium this would be body colored. At the bottom is a carbon-fiber composite diffuser tray finishing off what is, in my opinion, the best angle to view this car, and let's face it, the view most people will see as you blow them into the weeds at every stab of the gas pedal.
The GT-R interior is much like the exterior in which it doesn't live up to the standards set by some of the more prestigious and massively more expensive supercars on the market. That said, it is functional, practical and serves its purpose.
The driver's seat is nicely fitted with good grip coming from the side bolsters. The eight-way power adjustments provide good adjustability and finding a happy driver position was never an issue. The front passenger seat has ample legroom and an individual who is six-feet plus should still fit nicely. Headroom is also surprisingly adequate for a car of this nature and the view out of the rear window is decent, made better by the rear view camera to assist.
The rear seats provide zero legroom for a grown adult. But they fit child seats perfectly, with the LATCH system, and I was comfortable taking my wife, including two of our kids, for a spin. In fact, with children about 6 years and under, or any human with abnormally short legs, this car was actually very practical. This was rather shocking for a supercar, proving the versatility of the Nissan GT-R.
The trunk is large enough to store even my mother-in-law. I managed my mulch shopping from Lowe's in the GT-R too and it handled the everyday journeys as good as any large sports-sedan.
The trim in the cabin is certainly not luxurious but provides a level expected for a supercar at this price point. The carbon-fiber plate on the center console is a nice touch and buttons are easily accessible and intuitive to use. The steering wheel, wrapped in leather, looks dated and could use freshening.
The climate control was a little lacking in terms of its ability to maintain a comfortable temperature, with even the lowest fan setting still blowing quite a breeze and the only other option to turn the system off all together. To get around this I kept it on the lowest setting but would continually adjust the vents to prevent the air from blowing directly on me and then bring it back when I became too warm. It was as annoying as it sounds.
A horizontal bar beneath the control panel contains three settings for suspension, shift points and traction control. Just in front of the two-cup holders is a shiny red button, signifying the ability to bring Godzilla to life with a mere push.
Of the instrument clusters, the speedometer goes right the way up to 220 mph, reminding you, as if you need it, just how powerful the GT-R actually is.
The multi-layered information center on the LCD screen provides as much data as any driver can handle, from boost pressure, lateral and longitudinal G-Forces, throttle and brake position, steering position, lap times, coolant and oil temperature as well as graphs to show fuel economy and basically every other statistic you can dream up. The car even comes with a built in data system that is downloadable and viewable on your computer when you have taken the car to the racetrack and want to analyze your performance. The data are comparable to those used in professional race series across the world and the system is a major selling point for those who will be utilizing their GT-R on track.