Meet the new, even brawnier 2017 Nissan GT-R: pricing and performance details revealed

Published: 29 March 2016

► 2017 Nissan GT-R unveiled
► Another New York auto show debut
► Tidied styling, extra oomph too

Nissan has given the R35 GT-R a mid-life facelift for the 2017 model year, with subtle wardrobe upgrades and (naturally) even more power to improve the performance credentials of this most hardcore of Japanese sports car icons.

‘We’ve utilised a Nismo ignition system which has helped enhance mid-range performance,’ said Keno Kato, corporate vice president of Nissan’s global product strategy and product planning division.

‘Acceleration and outright performance stay the same [0-60mph in 2.6sec, top speed of 196mph], but the extra flexibility will improve lap times for most drivers,’ he added.

‘We’ve improved the aerodynamics, boosting stability at higher speed, while the optional titanium exhaust reduces weight – otherwise the kerb weight is around the same as the previous generation.

‘The dampers have also been retuned, improving ride comfort and delivering more forgiving cornering performance – it depends on your driving skill, but for most drivers the lap times will be better with this suspension set-up. The steering’s the same, however,’ added Kato.

Don’t expect a hefty price hike for the new Nissan, either, as pricing for the facelifted GT-R will be comparable with the £78,030 of the current model – although you’ll pay extra for the optional titanium exhaust system.

When the covers slipped off the 2017 GT-R at the 2016 New York motor show, several other changes were revealed:

  • Larger mesh grille, matte chrome, better cooling
  • Reprofiled bonnet aids improved aero stability
  • New front spoiler lip contributes to downforce
  • Wider side sills too
  • Redesigned rear end, air vents next to quad exhausts
  • Cabin more heavily revised, with all-new dashboard
  • New 20in Y-spoked forged alloys
  • Declutter! Number of switches cut from 27 to 11

The new, meaner 2017 Nissan GT-R

How much more power for the 2017 Nissan GT-R?

The current GT-R’s twin-turbo 3.8-litre V6 develops 546bhp in standard trim but as much as 591bhp in the hardcore Nismo variant, but even so Nissan has found some headroom for a power hike. The 2017 GT-R now develops 562bhp and 470lb ft of torque.

Owners will be able to check how the GT-R is performing for themselves, via the new eight-inch touchscreen that now gobbles up many of the minor controls.

Note also the new paddle-shifts mounted on the steering wheel, so drivers can now flick through the six-speed twin-clutch auto ratios without taking their hands off the wheel. Apparently, they click better too with more tactile feedback and gear changes are promised to be smoother and faster.

Cabin of new 2017 Nissan GT-R

Watch CAR’s Gavin Green experience the GT-R Nismo from the passenger seat at the Nordschleife with ex-F1 hand Sebastien Buemi at the wheel on video here.

Will there be a Nismo version?

‘I don’t know,’ says Kato – with a nod. We’ll take that as a yes, then.

How long until the GT-R’s replacement arrives?

If CAR’s January 2016 issue interview with Nissan design boss Shiro Nakamura is anything to go by, quite some time. ‘Seriously, we’ve done nothing for the next GT-R yet.

‘We have several ideas, but nothing’s decided. There’s a facelift in 2016 [that’ll be this one then…] but a new car will not be until 2020 or so.’ Which explains why they’ve gone to the bother of replacing the entire entertainment stack for this New York debut.

Read more of CAR’s 2016 New York motor show coverage here

Click here for CAR’s A-Z guide to the 2016 New York motor show

By James Taylor

Former features editor for CAR, occasional racer