From the innovative LEAF electric car to the game-changing Qashqai, Nissan’s range is not short of variety.

And it can never be accused of standing still.

Take the latest iteration of the fire-breathing GT-R, its flagship for performance.
Nissan is constantly tweaking this car and every year there are updates, however small, to keep it at the top of its game.

The 3.8-litre, twin turbo V6 produces a hefty 550ps and sounds wonderful, but that’s only part of the story.

Put your foot down and, if your vertebrae survive the savage surge of power, you’ll be at 62mph in a frankly ridiculous 2.8 seconds. 

That’s supercar pace and make no mistake. On a machine that still costs less than £80,000 in its ‘base’ form.

Launch control, which involves putting your left foot on the brake, planting the throttle and then releasing the brake, is so brutal that it makes you a bit dizzy for a split second.

Race mode opens all the taps and sharpens everything up – not that it needs it – for full-blooded track-orientated performance, while there’s also a ‘save’ mode that gives you half-throttle to stop you flying away when you don’t want to.

It should probably be called ‘save your driving licence’ mode, as in this car you’ll be at the legal limit before you can say ‘crikey’, which is the cleanest word that comes to mind when trying to describe the GT-R’s incredible pace.

Tweaks for this latest model include optimised handling and it feels every inch a substantial Grand Tourer behind the wheel, never putting a foot wrong.

And the car is clever enough to never let you exceed the limit – its sophisticated electronics will automatically take you out of race mode if you do.

Also new is an improved lightweight suspension system, with modified damper rates and shock absorbers contributing to a smoother ride than ever.

That V6 is a beauty to behold when you open the bonnet, each one built by one of just four master craftsman in a dust-free, temperature-controlled room. Each block bears the name of the expert that put it together.

Things inside are pretty excellent, too. It’s comfortable yet purposeful and is lovely enough for the long haul. You can even squeeze two people in the back.

The touch screen system is the gateway to a much-improved Bose sound system, but, more importantly, also contains all of the performance information you could ever need.

I was planning to avoid mentions of Playstations and racing game Gran Turismo – where many people first cast eyes on the GT-R’s predecessor, the Skyline – but that’s tricky because Nissan has collaborated with PolyPhony Digital, creators of said game, to build the system that gives details of performance, cornering, acceleration and g-force.

And that sums up the fact that this is a performance car for the digital generation, yet at its centre is a beating mechanical heart of which you can barely scratch the surface on public roads.
At a few quid over £78,000, this is a car that can outperform rivals that cost twice as much, if not more.

And if you want more, another £10,000 will get you the even-more-hardcore Track Edition, while the frankly unhinged 600ps Nismo commands £125,000.
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