Evolution Of The Nissan GT-R: A Cinematic and Pop Culture Icon

The Nissan GT-R has gone from a motorsport legend to a cinematic icon.

The Nissan GT-R earned the nickname “Godzilla” in 1992 when the R32 debuted. It has become a high-performance icon that seamlessly fuses speed, precision, and innovation. Its journey from the racetrack to the silver screen is a captivating tale of engineering brilliance and cultural influence. The GT-R has a rich history, dating back to the 1960s with the first generation Skyline GT-R. However, the R32 Skyline GT-R brought the nameplate to the global stage. It quickly became a favorite among enthusiasts and motorsport aficionados. That is thanks to advanced technology like the ATTESA E-TS all-wheel-drive system and a powerful inline-six engine.  This generation’s impressive track performance earned it the nickname “Godzilla” due to its supernatural abilities to outperform rivals.

The GT-R’s influence on films became increasingly evident.

It gained recognition for its performance and distinct aesthetics. The R34 Skyline GT-R’s appearance in the 2001 film “The Fast and the Furious” marked a pivotal moment, introducing the car to a worldwide audience and cementing its place in automotive pop culture. Its starring role in subsequent franchise installments only solidified its status as an icon. However, the true watershed moment for the GT-R arrived with the introduction of the R35 model in 2007. Breaking away from the Skyline lineage, the Nissan GT-R stood alone, showcasing cutting-edge technology, including the ATTESA E-TS Pro all-wheel-drive system and a handcrafted twin-turbo V6 engine. Its acceleration and handling prowess were second to none, setting record lap times on famed tracks like the Nürburgring. As a result, it gained the moniker “Supercar Killer,” challenging the dominance of established luxury sports car brands.

In pop culture, the R35 GT-R’s impact was equally significant.

Its inclusion in video games like the Gran Turismo series and various racing titles made it a virtual poster child for automotive enthusiasts. The GT-R’s futuristic design and ferocious performance made it a favorite among die-cast model collectors and custom car builders. The GT-R’s allure blossomed with appearances in movies like “Need for Speed” and the upcoming Gran Turismo movie, where it seamlessly merged with the high-octane action and modern aesthetics of these films. Its menacing stance, distinctive quad-circle taillights, and signature roar became synonymous with power and precision, leaving an indelible mark on pop culture.

Thanks to Nissan, I have been driving the 2023 Nissan GTR for the past several days.

It is a masterpiece of high-performance engineering. It is an exhilarating ride that embodies the heart-pounding spirit of motorsports. With its handcrafted twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V6 engine, delivering an impressive 565 horsepower in the GT-R Premium trim, this powerhouse is ready to deliver gut-punching acceleration at the slightest tap of the pedal. The ATTESA ET-S all-wheel-drive system ensures optimal traction and handling. Its dynamic handling shines through corners, making it a thrill to pilot on city streets, and it is ready for the race tracks.

The GT-R’s exhilarating ride and agile handling are the results of its meticulously calibrated independent double-wishbone front suspension and independent multi-link rear suspension. It features Bilstein DampTronic shock absorbers as standard, providing drivers with three selectable settings: Normal, Comfort, and R. These distinct modes empower the driver to seamlessly blend different degrees of driving comfort with the signature sporty and responsive handling that defines the GT-R. Conveniently placed on the car’s central console, sizeable tactile switches grant control over the engine, transmission, and suspension’s trio of driving modes.

Exuding a timeless and iconic design, the GT-R’s aggressive yet refined exterior is designed to turn heads and maximize aerodynamic efficiency. This car demands attention with its wide and low stance, muscular curves, and distinctive design cues. However, while the exterior remains captivating, the interior could benefit from a much-needed upgrade. The comfy Nappa leather-appointed seats and “horizontal-flow” dashboard design offer a luxurious feel, but the lack of modern technology and features leaves much to be desired.

One of the most remarkable aspects of the GT-R is its versatility.

Despite its race-inspired performance, it’s surprisingly accessible to drivers of varying skill levels. Anyone can enjoy the thrill of driving this supercar, whether you’re a seasoned track enthusiast or someone new to high-performance vehicles. The GT-R’s adjustable suspension settings and intuitive handling make it adaptable to different driving preferences. This feature makes it as suitable for daily commuting as it is for spirited weekend drives.


While the GT-R undoubtedly offers an unforgettable driving experience, notable areas warrant improvement. Despite its comfort, the interior is showing signs of aging, compounded by my disappointment with the utilized materials and finishes. A comprehensive redesign holds the potential to integrate modern technology and features, addressing these concerns seamlessly. Although back seats are present, they lean more towards symbolism than practicality, making minimal contributions to the car’s overall usability. Adding more flair to the GT-R’s interior and an upgraded head unit and gauge cluster could distinctly set the latest model apart from its predecessor.


2023 Nissan GT-R Premium Rating

Exterior – 10/10

Interior – 6/10

Performance – 10/10

Value – 8/10

Overall Grade – 8.5/10

However, the absence of a crisp backup camera or a 360-degree view could be better, especially considering the substantial price tag of over $123,000. Despite these considerations, the 2023 Nissan GT-R remains a resounding testament to Nissan’s unwavering commitment to high-performance engineering. This track-ready vehicle harmoniously fuses timeless design, exceptional handling, and an exhilarating driving experience that is genuinely challenging to match.

Introducing the 2024 Nissan GT-R

The 2024 Nissan GT-R has been unveiled with a range of updates. The new year model will receive redesigned front and rear fascias and innovative rear wing designs. Alongside these enhancements, the T-spec special edition returns. It joins the existing lineup alongside the GT-R Premium and NISMO models. T-spec pays tribute to the rare R34-generation GT-R models with unique paint colors like Millennium Jade and Midnight Purple. The GT-R Premium and T-spec boast 565 horsepower to enthrall sports car enthusiasts, and the GT-R NISMO ramps up performance to 600 horsepower by drawing direct inspiration from motorsports applications. Enthusiasts can anticipate the 2024 Nissan GT-R arriving at select U.S. Nissan dealerships this spring.


Read my Nissan Z Article

2023 Nissan Z: Reviving The Legend In The Modern Era

A Journey Through The Nissan Z’s Iconic History

The Datsun and Nissan Z cars are renowned for their iconic design, exciting performance, and rich history. They have captivated car enthusiasts worldwide and left a lasting impression on the automotive industry. From their humble beginnings to their status as legendary sports cars, the Z cars have earned a special place in automotive history.

In the early 1970s, the Datsun 240Z was introduced.

This sports car, designed by Yoshihiko Matsuo, took the world by storm with its sleek, timeless design and powerful engine. Thanks to its exceptional handling, it quickly became a popular choice for those looking for an exciting driving experience. The car became a symbol of Japan’s growing automotive industry. Datsun continued to expand the Z car lineup, with the 260Z and 280Z models offering larger engines, improved performance, and more luxurious amenities. With a loyal and passionate following, the Z car is now considered an iconic sports car.

In 1983, Datsun underwent a significant transformation as it rebranded as Nissan.

Introducing the Nissan 300ZX marked a new era for the Z cars, featuring a modern and aerodynamic design. The ZX boasted advanced technologies such as a turbocharged engine, electronic fuel injection, and an electronically controlled suspension, setting a new standard for sports cars of its time. In the 90s, Nissan unveiled the fourth-generation Z car, the 300ZX Twin Turbo, which became an icon of the era. Its twin-turbocharged V6 engine, exceptional performance capabilities, and sleek body lines solidified its place as a true supercar contender, adored by car enthusiasts for its raw power and dynamic driving experience.

After a hiatus, the Z car returned in 2002 with the Nissan 350Z.

The 350Z design evokes the spirit of the original 240Z, with a strong engine, rear-wheel drive, and a cockpit focused on the driver. The aggressive appearance and exciting performance captured the hearts of both new and longtime fans. It helped to revive the Z car legacy. Nissan continued this success with the introduction of the 370Z in 2009. It featured updated styling, improved performance, and advanced technology, carrying on the legacy of the Z car into the modern era and demonstrating Nissan’s commitment to producing thrilling sports cars.

Looking toward the future, Nissan has now released the anticipated Nissan Z.

The Nissan Z sports car pays tribute to its heritage while incorporating modern design features and innovative technology. Enthusiasts can expect an exhilarating driving experience from this vehicle. It has a lineage that dates back decades, from the Datsun 240Z to the latest 2023 Nissan Z. The Z cars have consistently pushed the limits of performance and style, making a lasting impact on the automotive industry and captivating generations of car enthusiasts. The legacy of the Datsun and Nissan Z cars will continue to inspire and thrill for many years to come.


Nissan Z Performance – 2023 Test Drive Review

2023 Nissan Z RiceBox

2023 Nissan Z will be loved by 350Z and 370Z owners.

The 2023 Nissan Z is one of the most anticipated sports cars of the decade, and soon they will be hitting the streets. After being introduced to the Proto Z and re-introduced to the Z at the Houston Auto Show, I now have my hands on a pre-production Performance Edition of the header-turn 2-door coupe for seven days. Since day one, in my possession, the Z has received constant attention and praise. Then, jaws dropped, seeing it on the streets of Houston. Finally, owners and fans of the 350Z and 370Z will be satisfied with the redesigned coupe.


The Z in a two-tone Passion Red and Super Black compliments the multi-generational design. The rear screams 300zx and the front is a futuristic extension of the 350Z/370Z. It is almost like a Frankenstein build sewn together cleanly. The rear, which has a low stance and great styling, is my favorite design aspect of the new Z, but the long front hood slowly grew on me as it does compliment the entire car’s silhouette. The black roof, wheels, rear valence, and trunk panel perfectly complete the Z’s two-tone appearance.

Exterior Rating: 8.5/10


The cockpit is nicely redesigned yet still very simple with updated materials. It has a 12.3-inch customizable racing-inspired TFT meter display, triple gauge pods like the previous generation, available leather-appointed sports seats, and an 8-speaker Bose Audio system. The only two features I wished for in the one I drove were cooling seats and a 360 camera. Yet, No bells and whistles are needed to please Z fans. For those familiar with the last generation, you will feel at home in this slightly updated interior. At 6’1, I felt like I was the max size that would be able to drive the Nissan Z and handle the driver-centric cockpit comfortably.

Interior Rating: 9.5/10


The 2023 Z’s 3.0-liter V6 twin-turbo engine is plentiful and paired with an exhaust tone that can’t help but make you imagine that you are the star of Tokyo Drift. The engine pushes at 400 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque and delivers a smooth and perky response. 0-60 with the 9-speed automatic transmission with aluminum paddle shifters is 4.0 seconds. The Z grips well, and the only gripe I had was the loose steering which I expected to be stiffer and sportier. However, in the 400+ miles I drove, I averaged 21.6 MPG, mostly highway driving. In addition, a six-speed manual will be made available for those who want the purest connection between driver and machine.

Performance Rating: 9.5/10

2023 Nissan Z Verdict

At a total MSRP of $53,610, the 2023 Nissan Z Performance is worth every penny. The Z Sport 3.0-liter V6 is the lowest-priced version, with a starting MSRP of $39,990. In addition, a Z Proto Spec version will also be available, which is the highest trim at $52,990. Finally, they should be at Nissan dealers nationwide in late summer 2022.

Overall Rating: 9/10

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Nissan Kicks SR – 2022 Test Drive Review

The 2022 Nissan Kicks SR is a good vehicle for your high school or college student.

The Nissan Kicks in the two-tone Scarlet Ember Tintcoat/Super Black exterior is bold, stylish, and aimed at the youngest generation of drivers. It offers best-in-class fuel economy to help your teen save money at the gas pumps and ample space inside to haul friends.


The Nissan Kicks’ most disappointing feature is its lack of a decently powered engine. It has a 1.6 liter 4 cylinder that only pushes out 122 horsepower and 114 lb-ft of torque. I find it unacceptable for this car to be so underpowered in our current times. It felt like I was driving the Flinstones car as I put my foot all the way down on the highway, and it was barely accelerating. This is due to the vehicle having CVT or Continuously Variable Transmission, which means it does not have gears that provide “steps” between low- and high-speed operation. This allows for the Kicks to be more fuel-efficient which it is. With my heavy foot, I averaged 32 MPG after driving 350 Miles. 31 City and 36 Highway MPG is what Nissan claims.


The interior may not be as fancy or stylish as the exterior, but it is conservatively simple and sturdy. I am 6’1 and did not feel cramped in any of the seats. Instead, there was plenty of headroom and leg space to make you think you are driving something larger. The Kicks comes with standard tech features, including Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a host of driver assists, such as automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning, and adaptive cruise control. Cargo space is the most impressive in the Kicks. The versatile cargo with a 60/40-split rear seat offers space up to 32.3 cubic feet.

The starting price of the 2022 Nissan Kicks is $19,900. The model seen here is priced at $25,980. This car is worth a look at if you are looking at a vehicle for your newly licensed teenager or recent high school grad headed to college.

Nissan Kicks Overall Rating: 7/10

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