Summary of this week’s contents:
1. R35 GT-R Story
Proof of Reaching World Class Levels – 7 minutes 26 sec 70 at Nur.
On May 15, 2009, Nissan released a press release announcing its new record at Nurburgring. In summary, the press release described the continuing development of the car, and as evidenced by the refreshed 2009 model which, on April 16, 2009, first set a new record of 7 min 27 sec 56, only to reset the best time with a 7 minute 26 sec 70 later on the 23rd of the same month. The 2009 model, about to go on sale in Europe, had targeted the 7 min 26 sec 4 that the Corvette ZR-1 had just set as the fastest road car time on June 28 of 2008, right after the 2008 model GT-R had set its best time of 7 min 29 second 03.
The Corvette ZR-1 sported a 6.2 liter V8 OHV with supercharger, aluminum cylinder block, with titanium conrods and forged pistons, generating up to 638 ps. Powertrain is classic FR 6 speed transaxle mated to an aluminum chassis. Brakes are, currently, the world’s largest on a production car with 394mm rotors, 6 piston caliper Brembos and rear 389mm rotors, 4 piston caliper Brembos. In other words, the car’s concept is the complete opposite of the GT-R. Mizuno claimed “our target is Europe’s supercars. No interest in what America does.”
Interestingly, there was another American car, the Dodge Viper ACR which, on August 18 set a laptime of 7 min 22 sec 1 at Nur. However, this time attack was conducted by Dodge enthusiasts, the car was heavily tuned, and so it was not widely discussed.
In late September, when Porsche bought their own USDM R35 GT-R and tried to replicate the time, it could only manage a 7 minute 54 sec time. Porsche accused Nissan of having the R35 run on S-tires, or run a special spec car. Nissan replied with “we have videos and the tires, perhaps the Porsche test drivers need driving lessons.” Which of course generated controversy on the internet.
Finally, although there is speculation that the Spec V could break the 7 minute 20 sec barrier, Mizuno refuses to release the Spec V’s times. He explains, “what is important to us, is the performance of the base car. The Nur times are a parameter that demonstrates what the GT-R can do. It is meaningless to release the time of a special version of the car.” In other words, the Spec V is not the real GT-R, the base model is.
2. Mechanism & Factory
Air Cooled Oil Coolers, with built in thermostats (ready for race use).
Oil coolers are necessary for those who want to track their car. But most cars don’t come with them, or if they do, the standard ones are too small to handle track duty. The R35 comes equipped with a high capacity oil cooler located behind the right of the front bumper. Air cooled, and thermostat equipped so the car can remain a “multiperformance supercar” capable of desert and snow roads.
The oil cooler is good enough that, the race cars for the 2008 Tokachi 24 hours and the 2009 Super Taikyu series ran the standard oil coolers. With oil used in turbo engines especially under a lot of strain, the lubrication system of the GT-R has been completely thought through, including its cooling ability. The oil cooler, the lateral wet & dry sump, and designation of Mobil 1 oil, this is knowledge passed down by race experienced Mizuno-san.
3. Racing Legend
Kondo Racing GT-R – First Domestic Win!
The season opener for the 2009 SuperGT season was, for the first time in 4 years, held at Okayama International Circuit. The three manufacturer teams had been in practice 2 weeks prior, with the GT-Rs showing top times.
The #24 car of Kondo Racing, piloted by J.P. DeOliveira, started the race on the second row, having come in 3rd place during qualifying.
On Sunday race day, conditions were very different from the dry conditions the day before – being full on wet. But the #24 car was perfectly matched to its Advans, so when the race started at 1400, with full on rain conditions , DeOliveira quickly passed the first two cars, SC430s, and found himself in first place, his only serious competition being the #18 NSX which he also rapidly left behind.
While most of the other field pitted in at 30 laps, he kept going, maintaining and improving his first place lead, finally pitting in at 52 laps. By this time there was a gap of 1 minute 20 seconds between the first and second place car, allowing replacement driver Seiji Ara to pit out still in first place.
This was Kondo Racing’s 3rd first place finish. The other GT-Rs did not do as well, with the #12 Impul car finishing in 4th place, the #3 Hasemi car finishing in 12th due mostly to driver error (A spin off), and the previous serious champion the #1 Motul car coming in at 13th resulting from an accident right after the rain began.
4. How to Build
Mizuno quote – There are various hoses in the engine bay of the R35. A/C and HVAC systems, radiator, intake piping, etc. Please enjoy as if actually building the real car at the factory.
Note: No history
Next week: Various Engine Parts.