No car enthusiast is unaware of Nissan's generation of Skylines, and of its latest iteration the R35. Although purists may claim that the R35 isn't a true Skyline because of its engine configuration, the fact is that the R35 offers extremely good value for its performance capabilities. Consistent with its goals of demonstrating the R35's track capabilities, Nissan, through its competition arm NISMO, began a development program in 2010, with the aim of offering a customer GT3 racer by 2012.
To this end, NISMO entered into a contract with JR Motorsport to help develop the GT-R GT3. This is not a new venture for the two companies, as JRM already runs a GT1 R35 for Nissan. Nissan also runs a GT-R in the Japanese Super GT series, so the combined knowledge gained from running these cars will benefit the GT3's development. The FIA's GT3 rules are designed for competitive, yet relatively affordable racing. This is why this class has practically exploded, with entrants from Porsche, Ferrari, Aston Martin, to name a few.
Nissan will step into this arena with the GT-R GT3, using the production car's VR38DETT V6 twin turbo engine. Output has been announced at 530 horsepower. GT3 rules specify rear-wheel drive, so a Hewland transaxle has replaced the production all-wheel drivetrain. Note that the GT1 version uses an NA V8 and a Ricardo transmission. Even so, reports are that the GT3 is very close to the pace of the the GT1 in testing.
The weight of the car will be between 1250 and 1350 kilos, which makes it lighter than the Mercedes SLS GT3. Entered in its debut race at Magny-Cours in August, the GT-R GT3 finished 8th out of a field of 35 cars after 98 laps, or about 440 kilometers of racing. For a race car's initial outing, that is an outstanding achievement. Only 10 GT-R GT3 racers will be produced for 2012, with 5 earmarked for Japan and the remaining 5 for the rest of the world. One has already been reserved by an Australian team and further announcements will reveal where the rest will go.Based on its initial outing, it looks like the R35 will continue with the dominant performance that have made Skylines such respected cars on and off the track. Source for this post here.