2014 Nissan GT-R: New Car Review
The 2014 Nissan GT-R is a 2+2 sport coupe, but that description doesn't do it justice. This supercar's track-caliber credentials are on par with many exotics that cost three, four and even five times as much. For that reason, it's considered one of the best high-performance values in the world.
The GT-R achieves its world-class status thanks to an extremely potent twin-turbo V6, a fast-shifting automated manual gearbox, sport-tuned suspension, powerful Brembo brakes and a sophisticated all-wheel-drive system. All of these elements come together to make the GT-R an extremely capable sports car.
Inside and out, the GT-R looks the part of a fast car. Its exterior is sleek and aerodynamic, and inside is a well-crafted, sport-infused cockpit with no shortage of performance cues.
What's New for 2014?
Nissan adds a limited production (only 150 cars) 2-seater Track Edition to the GT-R lineup. It features a specially-tuned suspension, unique brake cooling guides and a front spoiler with carbon-fiber air ducts. The GT-R model's body has been stiffened and lowered, and a new Premium Interior Package is offered featuring red semi-aniline leather seating.
What We Like
Very fast; superb acceleration; extremely agile; upscale interior; abundant premium amenities; affordable relative to competition
What We Don't
Less of a status symbol than most competitors; feels a little large and heavy in corners; no crash-test data from the NHTSA or IIHS
The 2014 Nissan GT-R is equipped with a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 that makes a tremendous 545 horsepower and 463 lb-ft of torque. All of this energy is fed to an advanced all-wheel-drive system by way of a revised 6-speed dual-clutch automated manual gearbox that offers smoother, quieter shifting thanks to sturdier components. The transmission offers three driver-selectable shifting programs.
The Environmental Protection Agency fuel economy estimates for the GT-R are a respectable 16 mpg city/ 23 mpg hwy.
Standard Features & Options
The 2014 Nissan GT-R is offered in three distinct trims: Premium, Black Edition and Track Edition.
The Premium ($100,590) includes a carbon-fiber center stack with a matte black switchgear and a dash-top multifunction display that details a range of performance data, including G-forces, shifting patterns and lap times. Drivers can use this information to improve their piloting skills.
Notable convenience features include HID headlights, leather and suede upholstery, navigation radio, Intelligent Key keyless entry and start, Bluetooth, a rearview monitor, power front seats with heat and a premium 11-speaker Bose audio system with USB port and Streaming Bluetooth capability.
Performance enhancements include a Bilstein DampTronic adjustable suspension, Brembo brakes, 10-spoke RAYS forged alloy wheels and nitrogen-filled Dunlop Sport Maxx GT 600 performance tires.
The Black Edition ($110,330) adds lightweight RAYS black alloy wheels, Recaro sport seats clad in red and black leather, a handmade dry carbon fiber rear spoiler, a custom dark headliner and a red-accented steering wheel.
The Track Edition ($116,710) deletes the rear seats and adds blue-trimmed high-grip front seats, unique track-inspired suspension tuning for the springs and shocks, lightweight black RAYS 6-spoke alloy wheels and a driver-only heated seat.
Options for the GT-R are limited to two packages for the Premium trim. A Cold Weather package adds a 30/70 coolant-to-water ratio and high-performance all-season run-flat tires, while the Interior Package adds red semi-aniline leather front seats.
Standard safety features for the GT-R include ABS, stability control, traction control and six airbags: front, side and head curtain.
Due to its limited production number, neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have performed crash tests on the 2014 Nissan GT-R.
Behind the Wheel
From a speed and acceleration standpoint, the GT-R is as good as it gets, with blindingly fast straight-line performance and tire-melting torque. All this power feels a little less daunting because it is accompanied by a very precise steering system, sophisticated all-wheel drive and big, strong brakes designed to reel the car in with precision and control.
The GT-R is as sure-footed and stuck to the pavement as a world-class sports car can be. That's especially true in the curves, whether on harrowing canyon switchbacks or a racetrack. The GT-R feels extremely confident in corners almost regardless of its speed. It maintains race-car-like grip and balance, offering a true sense of control and stability. But if the driver is feeling a little daring and wishes to break the car loose, the stability control can always be shut off.
The GT-R model's main drawback is its 3,800-lb-plus curb weight, which makes it feel a bit less agile than a few of its top German competitors. If this car were to shed 200 to 300 pounds, it would be better positioned to outmatch top performance cars.
The GT-R offers an easygoing ride thanks to a driver-tunable vehicle dynamics system. In normal mode, the car takes on a less rigid personality, making it viable for daily commuting or interstate cruising. Everyday comfort is something that many vehicles in this category can't claim.
Other Cars to Consider
Porsche 911 -- The starting price for the iconic Porsche is close to that of the GT-R, but optional equipment adds up quickly. The GT-R model's off-the-line acceleration is more impressive, but the 911 is more nimble.
Chevrolet Corvette -- The Corvette is more affordable than the GT-R. From a pure performance standpoint, however, the GT-R is slightly quicker and more agile.
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG -- Available in coupe or sedan form, the AMG can offer both luxury and performance at very high levels. The GT-R offers more all-around track prowess, while the AMG is better suited to daily drives.
For our money, we'd choose the Black Edition over the Premium. The Black Edition is primarily an appearance package, but it only adds another $10,000 to the GT-R model's price tag, and contributes a bit more exclusivity. Hardcore track enthusiasts should, of course, opt for the 2-seat Track Edition. At 150 units, however, don't be surprised to see big markups and bidding wars.