2010 Nissan GT-R  
Nissan GT-R

2010 Nissan GT-R
Price: $83,040+
Engine: 3.8 liter V6 twin turbo
Torque: 434 lb-ft
Horsepower: 485 HP
0-60 MPH: 3.3 sec.
Top Speed: 193 mph est.
EST MPG: 16 City / 21 HWY
Available: Late 2009


A Supercar for the Superconscious
Written by Erica O'Young

Allow it to reintroduce itself. The Nissan GT-R is back, packing the same deadly punch of performance and price. With very few compromises and five additional horsepower, a revised suspension, updated wheel finishes and standard front-seat and roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags, the super-car from 2009 relaunches in time for the super-cost-conscious in 2010.

Introduced in July 2008, the 2009 version of the GT-R roared onto the scene garnering awards worldwide as Motor Trend “2009 Car of the Year,” Automobile magazine’s 2009 “Automobile of the Year” and Kelley Blue Book’s “2009 Best Resale Value Award.” But while the model set racetrack records and tore up sub-4-second dashes to 60 mph, it gained less than rave reviews in reliability. The GT-R’s secret weapon was its launch control system, but the same system also placed extreme stress on the car's rear-mounted transaxle.

Critiques, however, did not fall on deaf ears. The 2010 GT-R features a reprogrammed launch control system standard to all new models (and retrofit-able to '09 models) designed to limit transaxle stress. It works, and it actually works rather well. To pack an even bigger punch, the horsepower rating of the GT-R’s 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 engine has gone from 480 hp to 485. With new Transmission Control Module (TCM) programming to optimize clutch engagement for improved drivability and improved vehicle acceleration with the Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) activated, the 6-speed, dual-clutch transmission holds its own with the best. An updated braking system features more rigid brake lines for improved durability and brake calipers with both the Brembo and Nissan logos. As a final adjustment, the 2010 GT-R’s state-of-the-art suspension has redesigned Bilstein shocks with a new valve body design and revised spring and damper rates.

On the outside, things are looking better as well. The 20-inch RAYS forged aluminum-alloy wheels now have a darker, high-luster, smoke finish on the base model and a new “near-black” metallic wheel finish standard on the Premium model. For 2010, one new color – Pearl White – is offered, and even the Super Silver exterior color boasts a polished front bumper.

The inside is a bit less glossy, but functionally driver-centric. Here, speed and efficiency are top priority. Snug sport bucket seats and a high center console cradle the driver and front passenger, and rear seats are modest but functional. In terms of quality, the GT-R interior does not lack with plenty soft-touch materials and a general feel of quality construction.

Safety-wise, the massive antilock Brembo brakes, stability control and traction control are all standard, as well as front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. With a best 60-0 mph stopping distance of 98 feet, last minute screeching halts in the GT-R won’t be a problem for the pedal-happy.

Perhaps the only caveats to the 2010 GT-R’s comeback are the slightly bulky handling (The car weighs in at 3,800-plus pounds, a mass that becomes perceptible in tight corners) and the lack of a conventional manual transmission option. The GT-R's automated manual transmission makes its break-neck acceleration available to everyone, but gearheads will miss the irreplaceable feel of shift, clutch pedal and road.

All in all, the 2010 Nissan GT-R remains undefeated in the category of performance for price. Still the most accessible exotic sports car on the market, the Nissan GT-R races back for another year of rave reviews.

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