The latest Nissan GT-R was revealed at the 2016 New York International Auto Show and it was more of an evolution of the R35 recipe rather than anything truly groundbreaking. The revamped leathery interior is a welcomed change when compared to the spartan and gritty GTR interiors of old. Now we have discovered the next iteration of the GT-R will most certainly not be as unimaginative as the 2017 model year upgrade, rather it will reside on a completely new platform, the R36.
Automotive News and Top Gear has unearthed some juicy details about the next version of Godzilla, primarily it may possess some form of electrification. It shouldn’t be too much of a surprise to hear the GT-R entertaining a hybrid drivetrain. If it plans to keep doing what it does best, which is whooping the asses of much more expensive cars, then it needs to apply what almost every other car company does to climb the 0-60 bragging chart. If the automotive Holy Trinity (Ferrari LaFerrari, Porsche 918, and the McLaren P1) all have some form of electrification/hybrid technology then it MOST DEFINITELY needs a hybrid as a drivetrain.
Shiro Nakamura, Nissan’s Chief Creative Officer, mentions in an interview that developing the layout and packaging of the new GT-R would be the first step in the redesign process. He does not outright confirm the development of a hybrid system for the GT-R, but mentions he needs to deliver a much higher performance car while delivering better fuel efficiency. Those desires suspiciously point to a hybrid setup. Nakamura stated:
Electrification is almost inevitable for any car. If the next-generation GT-R has some electrification, nobody would be surprised at that time.
It’s very tough to redesign this car, but we are starting now… I think we can change to better proportions — the width, the height. Anything that we change on this car will contribute to better performance, better aero.
As to whether the hybridization of the new Godzilla will disturb the design lineage of the GT-R, Nakamura quells any potential theories by mentioning the V6’s placement up front while mated to a dual clutch gearbox transmission. He also mentions:
Mizuno-san (the ‘father’ of the GT-R) says the GT-R will always be a front-engined, 2+2-seater coupe
Supplementing the speculation of a hybrid configuration. Top Gear has confirmation from Nissan’s Ben Bowlby, the man behind the LMP1 GT-R and the DeltaWing, that the next GT-R will possess a version of the V6 twin-turbocharged engine currently equipped in the Le Mans car.
The 3.0-litre V6 (from the LMP1 car) is a sort of god-child of the true, road-going GT-R… It is truly an early ancestor of what will be a future Nissan GT-R engine.
We’re wondering how much more power the R36 Nissan GT-R will be in hybrid form. The most powerful Nissan GT-R, the current Nismo GT-R, has 600 horsepower and 481 lb-ft of torque, and has a blazing 0-60 mph time of 2.8 seconds. Some form of electrification driving one axle would certainly bump those figures by a healthy percentage, and perhaps shave plenty of tenths off of that 0-60 time.