So is this actually the new Skyline?
To answer truthfully, no. This is actually the new GT-R, because Nissan has dropped the Skyline tagline. However, this picture (above) is of the final production car, and it’ll be officially unveiled to the world on 24 October at the Tokyo Motor Show. We’ll bring you all the details from the Tokyo Motor Show as soon as the GT-R is unveiled, but if your appetite for more needs sating then check out www.gtrnissan.com where you can download a countdown clock to keep track of the launch date. That means the PR machine is ramping up. Not that it hasn’t been already with two previous GT-R prototypes in 2001 and 2005, plus the appearance of the GT-R under disguise at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed.
So just how good will the GT-R be?
Very good. The last Skyline was awesome and the limited edition run of 20 special-built NISMO GT-R Z-tune R34s in 2004 were stunning. The new car is supposed to be faster and more refined. How fast? Well, apparently it’s quicker than the 911 Turbo at the ‘Ring and Nissan is also aiming to break the Porsche Carrera GT’s time. Price-wise a 911 Turbo will set you back £99,920, but the GT-R is expected to come in at around £60,000. However, the 7.8 million yen price that Nissan has announced for Japan is less than £33k so it's the Europeans who will fulfill CEO Carlos Ghosn's wish that the GT-R makes money.
But the Tokyo Motor Show is also always a bit wacky. What else is Nissan going to show?
A Pivo 2. The original Pivo was shown in 2005 at Tokyo and recently made an appearance at the 2007 Goodwood Festival of Speed. That car had Lithium-ion batteries and a rotating cabin that negated the need for a reverse gear. The new Pivo 2 goes beyond that with 90 degree turning wheels and uses ‘by-wire’ technology for the braking and steering. So, you drive up to a parking space, swivel the cabin to line yourself up, then the wheels rotate and you drive straight in. Also new is a Robotic Agent, similar to the avatar found in the Mercedes F700. It’s supposed to make the journey less stressful so you have a conversation with the car rather than jabbing at buttons on the dashboard as you queue in Tokyo gridlock. But rather than the young blonde in the Merc the Pivo 2’s Robotic Agent is a wide-eyed grinning icon on the dash. How long until that gets jabbed in the eye is anyone's guess.