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by David Zalstein

The man in charge of global design at Nissan has revealed that, while the next GT-R is still “more than two years away”, the current car has potential to get even better.

Speaking to Australian media at this weekend’s Le Mans 24 Hour endurance race, Nissan chief creative officer Shiro Nakamura said the current supercar’s straight-line performance will be hard to better, but that other improvements are achievable.

“[Before a new GT-R arrives] we still want to improve [the] current GT-R because it has more potential to be better,” Nakamura said.

“I think it’s an improvement. You will see. Even the design wise, we have some minor change coming very soon. You will see very shortly.

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“Performance is already very good – [able to go from] 0-100km/h in 2.7 seconds – it’s fastest. So it might be impossible to get higher speed wise but maybe more better handling and that kind of thing.”

Promising a higher quality of design in its soon-to-be-seen update, the design head says the next generation GT-R will be more evolution than revolution despite taking inspiration from the company’s hybrid-assisted GT-R LM Nismo racecars tackling this year’s Le Mans 24 Hour.

“I think we’re better to continue to make evolution of today’s [car] rather than switching to something completely different.

“Nissan GT-R LM Nismo is not a production car but it is inspired by GT-R and also to give us inspiration for future GT-R.”

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Intended to be four-wheel drive (rather than its eventual front-wheel drive) layout, Nakamura says the concept – front-engine/four-wheel drive – is the same configuration as the production GT-R.

“We want to be more challenging, we want to be more innovative, just not following what other people do. Therefore this is a racing car, but in the spirit of this one, it’s very similar to what we want to do for the production [car].”

Unable to confirm any electrified or hybrid powerplant for the next GT-R because, “To be honest, we have not yet finalised next generation of GT-R,” Nakamura says the Japanese manufacturer is “still in the process of experimenting” with drivetrains.

“…But electrification is one of the aspects – so nothing confirmed.”

Nissan is hoping at least one of its three GT-R LM Nismos makes it to the end of this year’s Le Mans 24 hour endurance race, though at the time of publish, one car has already retired.




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