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GT Turbo Expands Skyline Range

Godzilla, the awesome Nissan Skyline GT-R that has been available on special order in New Zealand for the last twelve months, now has a stablemate, the Skyline GT Turbo.

“We’ve been very pleased with the response to the GT-R, but it does have a very select appeal,” said John Manley, Nissan New Zealand’s Director of Sales and Marketing.

“With the Skyline GT Turbo we can offer a striking performance car to a wider section of the market.”

Selected Nissan dealers will sell the 206 kWs Skyline GT Turbo, two door coupe for $64,495 for the five speed manual and $65,995 for the four speed automatic.

The current, 10th generation Skyline (R34) was launched in Japan in May 1998 and was facelifted in September this year.

“We could have launched the GT Turbo earlier in the year,” said Mr Manley, “but we decided to wait until the facelift model was available.”

The facelifted Skyline GT Turbo 5 speed which is now available has more torque – 363 Nm at 3200 rpm, an increase of six percent over the previous model. It also has an improved gear shift action, with shorter lever travel.

The combination of the powerful engine and its phenomenal torque makes the Skyline GT an ideal long distance tourer for the open road, true to the original meaning of Grand Turismo.

It will eat up the kilometres quickly and comfortably without the need for constant gearchanges, the more than ample torque of the engine making overtaking a simple matter of prodding the accelerator whether you are in fourth or fifth gear.

Apart from the five speed manual gearbox, the GT Turbo is also available with a four speed automatic transmission – Dualmatic – that incorporates manual shift operation with either the transmission selector or switches on the steering wheel.

While the special order Skyline GT-R showcases Nissan’s technology with four wheel drive transmission and even greater engine torque from its 2568 cc twin turbo-charged straight six cylinder engine, the Skyline GT Turbo is no shrinking violet.

It’s 2498 cc engine still has the same 206 kWs peak power at 6400 rpm from a single turbocharger, fed to the rear wheels with the aid of a limited slip differential and traction control system.

A Helical LSD is employed on the manual transmission model while a viscous LSD is used with the automatic.

The turbo-charged and intercooled double overhead camshaft, 24-valve engine also features Nissan’s variable valve control system (VVTC) designed to provide stronger mid rpm performance.

For a 6 cylinder coupe, the Skyline GT Turbo has surprisingly nimble handling thanks to the Super HICAS four wheel steering system, the large footprint from the 225/45 ZR17 tyres and the sophisticated multi link front and rear suspension, the same basic design as that used on the GT-R.

The R34 Skyline’s roadholding has also been enhanced by a reduction in wheelbase to 2665 mm, compared to the R33 model, and an overall reduction in length to 4580 mm. The latest Skyline was designed to be even more of a driver’s car.

The electronically controlled HICAS four-wheel steering system incorporates steering wheel angle and rate of direction change sensors. At moderate speeds when turning into corners, the rear wheels momentarily turn in the opposite direction to the front wheels, creating sharper turn-in. The rear wheels then turn in the same direction as the front wheels. At higher speeds the rear wheels turn in the same direction as the front wheels.

HICAS creates a feeling the vehicle is easier to drive by providing faster response, greater vehicle control, and improved straight line stability.

Large ventilated disc brakes capably handle braking with four piston calipers at the front and twin piston calipers at the rear. An anti-lock braking system with brake assist is standard.

The Skyline GT Turbo does not lack for standard equipment either. There is climate control air conditioning, electric windows with key off function, remote control central locking incorporating a security system and engine immobiliser.

The door mirrors are electrically adjustable and there are variable intermittent front wipers. The stereo CD player has its aerial built into the rear window.

Comprehensive instrumentation includes a voltmeter, oil temperature, oil pressure and turbo boost gauges.

The muscular body design is set off with 17-inch alloy wheels, body coloured bumpers, door handles and mirrors, a rear spoiler and front air dam.

The driver’s sports seat has independent height adjustment for the front and rear of the squab, while the leather-covered steering wheel is tilt adjustable.

A comprehensive safety package includes dual airbags, ABS anti-lock brakes with brake assist, front seat belt pre-tensioners, anti-intrusion beams in the doors and impact absorption zones front and rear. There are powerful xenon headlights to complement the Skyline GT Turbo’s performance.

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