2015 Nissan GT-R Nismo Nurburgring Details:
- Nissan began testing at the Nurburgring in 1989 with the R32 Skyline GT-R
- Four drivers invited to get the fastest time
- Nismo global brand ambassador and racer Michael Krumm finishes in 7:08.679 minutes
- 2015 GT-R Nismo set fastest factory GT-R time ever at Nurburgring
What happens when the minds of Nismo get their hands on a Nissan GT-R? It results in the ultimate production track and street car, the 2015 Nissan GT-R Nismo. In the motorsports world, Nismo competes in the highest forms of GT and sports car racing such as Japan's Super GT Series and the European Le Mans Series. The Nissan GT-R became a back-to-back champion in 2011 and 2012 in the Super GT racing series.
We've seen the Nismo-spec Nissan 350Z/370Z here in the states and we've seen the Nismo Nissan Skyline R34 in Japan, but now we're getting a proper GT-R. Finally, the states are getting the car in its ultimate form. No water-downed version here, just the Nismo GT-R in all of its 591 horsepower glory. To further prove the capabilities of the new AWD beast, Nissan brought it to ultimate motorsports proving ground, the Nurburgring in Germany.
It's been 24 years Nissan since the brand first brought a GT-R to the Ring. Since the 1989 Skyline GT-R R32 run, all GT-R badged cars have been proven on this circuit and been awarded critical acclaim in the market. When the Nismo GT-R was conceived as the flagship of the Nismo brand, the team agreed the car would first have to earn its place atop the range before the world would see the final design in an auto show setting.
"A good lap time at the 'Ring is part of the credibility of a top performance car," says Andy Palmer, Nissan's executive vice president of Product Planning and Brand Strategy. "Most of the cars that lap in the low seven minutes are hand-built, very expensive supercars. We have created something that does better than nearly all those cars, and I think that's quite an achievement. No one is anywhere near Nissan when you take value for money into account. And that's what the brand stands for - innovation and excitement for everyone."
Furthermore Palmer explains the meaning behind GT-R. "They stand for Gran Turismo Racing. The 'GT' is all about four seats and fast miles over a long distance in comfort. 'R' is the race breed, and the credibility of being able to go fast on a circuit. The four seats are very important to us - it's a four-seater and a very fast supercar. That's quite a combination."
Nissan invited four experienced race drivers to stretch the legs of the 2015 GT-R Nismo at the Nurburgring. This included Red Bull's third driver Sebastien Buemi, Nismo global brand ambassador and racer Michael Krumm, German touring car veteran Armin Hahne, and Japanese driver Tetusya Tanaka.
Nissan's most experienced Nurburgring test driver, 57-year-old Hiroyoshi Kato, admits he's done "over 5,000 laps of the 'Ring - yet it never gets boring." He was one of the pioneers who tested the Skyline R32 and all of the different GT-R iterations since then. Kato-san played a crucial role in technical and dynamic feedback for the engineers.
First to go up was Sebastien Buemi from Red Bull. "I did a 7:12 on my first lap," Buemi says. "I stopped to take some fuel out to reduce the weight. I was on the way to do a lap under 7:10 - it was a fast one - but on the back straight it started to run out of fuel. I got back to the paddock but the lap was ruined. I would like to congratulate Michael Krumm for achieving the targeted record."
Michael Krumm went last and on his second lap he crossed the finish line with a 7:08.679 the record for the fastest-ever time for a factory GT-R on the Nurburgring. "The weather was perfect. Cool. No rain. Not too windy. We had the afternoon to try for the record. The car was in road trim. The Nissan GT-R Nismo with track options was used," says Krumm. "For a car to be fun you need a good ratio between the power and the grip in the corners," he says. "The Nissan GT-R Nismo can be really fast with respect to its power because its balance is superb. That balance is a very important factor in the driving enjoyment."