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1999 Nissan R34 Skyline GT-R - Drags to Riches

Witness the World's Fastest Street-Driven R34 Skyline, Courtesy of Veilside

Ricky Chu
Jul 1, 2001
Photographer: RJ DeVera

Jealousy. Envy. Greed. No, these aren’t the members of the latest wannabe Spice Girls (because remember, there’s only one). These are the extreme emotions I feel when I look at VeilSide’s R34 Skyline V-Spec drag car. Why? Just look at the thing. I bet you feel pangs of those same deadly sins. I don’t want to just ride in the VeilSide Skyline, I want to drive and own it. I want to wake up seeing this gleaming white beauty parked in my driveway. I might even offer rides to my friends. That doesn’t make me all bad, does it?

VeilSide, based in Tsukuba-shi, Japan, is known for its expertise in designing and manufacturing exquisite fiberglass body kits. Each kit is designed and put through a rigorous taste test by owner Hironao Yokomaku. My Japanese isn't the greatest, but I think he once said that he would take the Pepsi Challenge with any of that Amsterdam crap—or maybe that's from a movie. Anyway, the R34 has a full arsenal when it comes to exterior enhancements. A VeilSide R34 Street Drag body kit fits nicely on the factory sheetmetal. FRP doors, hood, and variable angle wing complete the ensemble. But this is more than a showpiece, it's a tuning masterpiece.

Nissan developed the R34 Skyline GT-R to be a supercar straight off the dealer lot. The infamous twin-turbo motor RB26DETT produces a very restricted and government-limited 280 hp@6,800 rpm.

VeilSide’s crew knew this wasn’t going to be sufficient power to propel the bulky R34 to record-holding status. There was nothing but opportunities for the RB26 motor, so with this in mind Yokomaku’s crew tore the motor down and began to rework it from the bottom up. With a distinctive grouping of HKS and VeilSide parts, the RB26 motor gets a savage 1,100hp bump, which is enough to get most passengers to pee in their pants.

VeilSide dismembered the RB26 and left no engine component unscathed. The bottom end is fitted with HKS forged pistons, an HKS full counter crankshaft, VeilSide titanium connecting rods, and VeilSide rod caps. Did I hear titanium? I think my jealous eyes are getting greener by the moment. The valvetrain is also treated with equally royal manners. Stuffed with VeilSide valves, valve guides, valvesprings, titanium retainers, and cams, the newly built top end is capable of atmospheric 10,000-plus rpm revs.

I imagine that the crew at VeilSide was seeing double when they designed the forced induction system for the RB26. An HKS GT3240 ball bearing turbo is rated at 600 hp@1.4-bar. More than enough power for any four-cylinder motor; but nowhere near the potential power output of the RB26. VeilSide’s solution was to use two HKS GT3240 turbos bolted to a VeilSide Pro Drag exhaust manifold. VeilSide somehow managed to fit two of these colossal turbos under the hood.

Boost regulation shows up in pairs again. Twin HKS racing wastegates work in conjunction with an HKS EVC Pro to contain boost at an intense 2.7 bar. Just prior to reaching the VeilSide 100mm throttle body and intake manifold, the hot intake charges quickly cool down through an HKS intercooler. The R34 would not be complete without a deafening exhaust. How do two ball bearing turbos sound when spooling through the 75mm full titanium VeilSide exhaust? Absolutely intoxicating if you’re into things like that. Supervising six Sard 1,000cc injectors is not an easy chore. Fuel management is directed via an HKS F-CON V Pro stand ECU. Using the HKS Power-writer, VeilSide has full access to all fuel and timing maps. When accompanied with the Sard air/fuel analyzer, precision tuning can be achieved.

To most, the factory six-speed transmission would be sufficient for any type of driving, but not for VeilSide. No, no, no—VeilSide tosses the Nissan tranny in favor of a Hollinger six-speed sequential transmission. Further aiding power to the ground are an Ogura clutch, Cusco limited slip, HKS axles, and a VeilSide driveshaft. They operate together better than clockwork, making certain that all 1,360 hp are put to good use.

Safety comes first, especially when surpassing triple-digit speeds. The Skyline’s factory interior has been stripped to make room for the VeilSide chrome-moly rollcage. During the New Zealand top speed trials, Option driver Daijiro Inada fitted himself in a Recaro SP-GN racing seat while a Willians four-point harness anchored him into place. White Sard stack meters are mounted high to monitor the car’s vitals. When you’re out to set records, there is no room for error.

At the trials in New Zealand, contenders have a total of six kilometers to perform. This breaks down to two kilometers to accelerate, two kilometers to maintain constant speed, and two kilometers to decelerate. Keep in mind, this contest is held on a country road infested with potholes. A 1,360hp engine and six-speed sequential transmission provide plenty of power and torque to accelerate the GT-R in the first two kilometers.

The next two kilometers requires maintaining the top speed. Handling at high speeds can get even more brutal when trying to avoid bumps and potholes.

VeilSide installed a set of its Pro Drag coilover shocks and springs. So, a set of 18x9.5 VeilSide Andrew Racing rims wrapped with Bridgestone RE01 rubber surround the four corners of the R34 to present agility as well as stability. Now, with four kilometers out of the way, the last two kilometers are the most crucial. Bringing the GT-R from 346km/h to a complete halt is a duty for the Endless brakes. Now, the six kilometers are a thing of the past, the record is set, and the VeilSide R34 holds it at 346.2km/h. That’s 215 mph to those of you without calculator watches.

By Ricky Chu
157 Articles

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