Oh My… Nissan's Gt - R Nameplate Is Already 50 Years Old!

Oh My… Nissan's GT-R Nameplate Is Already 50 Years Old!

This year marks the 50th anniversary of one of the industry’s most beloved and famed performance car families. We are of course talking about Nissan’s GT-R– models, a car that will be celebrated at next month’s NISMO Festival in Japan alongside the Nissan Z family.

In 1969, Nissan introduced its very first Skyline GT-R as a model exclusive to the Japanese market. It was initially sold solely as a four-door sedan and from March 1971, also offered as a two-door coupe. Power was provided by a 2.0-liter DOHC S20 inline-six engine delivering 160 hp at 7000 rpm and 130 lb-ft (176 Nm) of torque at 5600 rpm, all of which was sent to the rear wheels through a five-speed manual transmission and limited-slip differential.

In 1973, Nissan started building the second-generation Skyline GT-R also with an S20 inline-six engine, rear-wheel drive and a five-speed manual gearbox. Only 197 examples were ever built due to lackluster demand for performance vehicles because of the global energy crisis. From 1973 until 1989, the GT-R badge was resigned to the history books.

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When the Skyline GT-R returned for its third-generation, it ushered in a whole new era of performance for the Nissan brand. The R32-generation model was designed with Group A class racing in mind and debuted the brand’s iconic RB26DETT 2.6-liter twin-turbocharged inline-six engine with a claimed 276 hp at 6,800 rpm and 260 lb-ft (353 Nm) of torque at 4,400 rpm.

The success of the R32 encouraged Nissan to continue the Skyline GT-R nameplate for a fourth-generation with the introduction of the R33 in 1995. It was sold in two-door coupe and four-door sedan guises and produced in a plethora of different guises, including the 400R model which was limited to just 44 units globally.

In 1999, it was the time of the fifth-generation GT-R dubbed R34. The RB26 engine remained and the car received a plethora of mechanical and technological updates and improvements.

When production of the R34 ended, Nissan decided to separate the GT-R model from the Skyline family and launched the R35 GT-R in 2008. It is still producing this model to this day, and earlier this year unveiled a special 50th Anniversary Edition variant.

Here’s to another 50 years of the GT-R – at least…