As we head toward the next-generation GT-R, which will reportedly feature a hybrid drivetrain and gobs of horsepower oozing from every square inch, we still have to keep one eye on the ever-changing current-gen GT-R. On November 25, 2014, Nissan released the 2015 GT-R to the Japanese market, and much like the 2014 JDM-Spec GT-R previewed our 2015 GT-R, I anticipate that this will preview the U.S.-spec 2016 GT-R.
Year in and year out, Nissan has kept true to its promise that the GT-R will receive an upgrade with each and every model year, and the 2016 model year is no exception. Granted, the changes are all under the skin and rather mild, so they will likely go unnoticed unless you drive the 2015 and 2016 model years back to back.
The 2016 GT-R’s biggest change is to its suspension and steering systems. Nissan revised the damper rates of the shocks and revised the ECU settings to help with stability in the corners. Additionally, the automaker tweaked the steering system’s damper to reduce the amount of corrections needed on rough roads and reduce vibration when idling.
Contacting the road are revised tires that feature an updated inner structure to improve straight-line stability and confidence on rough roads. Behind these tires are modified brake pads with new shims that reduce noise and provide better braking control.
Though the engine remains in its same state of tune — 545 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 463 pound-feet of torque at 3,200 rpm — the engine management system has been retuned. Additionally, the clearance of the transaxle and driveshaft is tighter to reduce vibrations, and new bearings in the flywheel housing help to further reduce vibration.
Sound insulation was also improved as Nissan has changed the type of carpeting used in the trunk to help deaden cabin noise. Fortunately, it appears as if Nissan left the deadening material between the cabin and the engine compartment alone, as the various noises from the engine are part of the GT-R’s charm and are there to remind you what you’re driving on a second-by-second basis.
The final change for the 2015 JDM-spec GT-R is a Track Edition, which was already a part of the 2015 lineup in the U.S. This special edition features custom adhesive for added shell rigidity, flared fenders with an air outlet, a revised suspension, an exclusive stabilizer, custom RAYS aluminum-alloy wheels, and specially built Dunlop Sport Maxx GT 600 DSST tires.
The 2015 JDM-Spec GT-R is already available in Japan with a starting price of JPY 9,477,000 ($80,674). Also available are the Black Edition, the Premium Edition and the Track Edition, which are priced from JPY 10,400,400 ($88,534), JPY 10,587,240 ($90,124) and JPY 11,700,720 ($99,603), respectively. Nissan did not release any details on the 2016 U.S.-spec GT-R’s pricing or release date, but expect to hear more in the coming months.