Nissan GT-R
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Overall

Although the body and engine block have stayed the same since its introduction back in 2007, nearly everything else on Nissan’s halo-performance machine has been massaged since then.

Drivetrain

Twin-turbocharged V6 produces 545 horsepower and is connected to a six-speed automated manual transmission that’s responsible for the GT-R’s sub-three-second zero-to-60-mph time. That’s right, zero to 60 mph, from a standing start, in 2.9 seconds.

While the original GT-R (nicknamed Godzilla by its loyal fans) that Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn unveiled back in 2007 was outrageous beyond words, what the company has done to keep it at the forefront of performance cars is doubly amazing. How dare his company take on the world’s most exalted sports cars and claim absolute superiority. But dare it has, and the result is a Supercoupe that can keep up — and often surpass — Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini, etc., and do it for a relative pittance. While there appears little underhood to differentiate the 2014 edition from the previous effort, updates can be found under the sheetmetal, including minor suspension changes. The 20-inch wheels (by a company called Rays) are light and rigid and the standard Dunlop tires are made using a compound that extends tread life and improves ride comfort. As for the engine, Nissan never seems content. Yes, output remains 545 horsepower and 463 pound-feet of torque, however Nissan has made the engine more responsive in the mid-and upper rev range. Little has changed with the six-speed automated transmission that’s located at the rear of the car along with the transfer case for the continuously variable all-wheel-drive system. Nissan claims a zero-to-60-mph time of just 2.9 seconds by using the car’s launch control that electronically limits wheel spin to achieve the quickest acceleration. One of the coolest GT-R iterations is the Black Edition (oddly, available in a variety of colors) that gets a hand-made “dry” (matte finish) carbon-fiber rear spoiler in addition to the unique leather interior trim and painted black wheels. An all-new Track Edition uses even more aggressive suspension settings, brake-cooling ducts, a larger front spoiler and more to make it the fastest GT-R yet, although it’s only for two since the rear seat has been eliminated for weight-savings. Also, there are only 150 Track models coming to the United States for 2014.

Base price (incl. destination): $100,600
Type: Two-door coupe
Base engine (hp): 3.8-liter DOHC V6, twin-turbocharged (545)
Layout: Front-engine, all-wheel-drive
Transmission: Six-speed paddle-shift automated manual
MPG (city/hwy): 16/23
Safety: Front airbags; side-impact airbags; side-curtain airbags; anti-lock brakes; traction control; stability control
Weight (lb.): 3,830