Nissan-Italdesign GT-R50: An Anniversary Celebrated The Right Way

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The iconic GT-R and Italdesign both will be fifty years old this year, so Nissan and the Italian design studio decided to pool resources on a rather special project. The outcome is the Nissan GT-R50 by Italdesign, a one-off supercar that is the perfect blend of Nissan’s engineering and the studio’s design prowess.

Before we measure up the car, let’s get one fact out of the way: This is not the next-generation R36 GT-R. “Although this is not the next-generation GT-R, it is an exciting celebration of two anniversaries in a provocative and creative way—wrapping one of Nissan’s best engineering platforms and Japanese design with Italian coachbuilding,” said Nissan’s design head Alfonso Albaisa.

The GT-R50 looks so neat though, we wouldn’t be against some of the design elements making its way to the R36. One look at the floating signature taillamps, and you know you want those on the next GT-R, in addition to the retracting rear spoiler. The front fascia of the GT-R50 is recognisable yet sleeker and sharper. The designers lowered the roof of the R35 by two inches to achieve this. The gold accents on the grille provide a nice contrast to the dark theme of the car. The golden treatment also finds place on the flared rear wheel arches to emphasize their muscular proportions. The GT-R50 sits on bespoke 21-inch wheels shod with Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres.

The stock 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V6 of the R35 has been heavily retuned and now produces 710hp and 780Nm under the GT-R50’s hood. In stock guise, the motor is good for 600hp and 650Nm on board the GT-R Nismo. To achieve such a huge spec bump, engineers raided the company’s motorsports parts bin. Upgrades to the engine include larger diameter turbochargers off the GT3 race car, larger intercooler, altered camshaft profiles, high-flow fuel injectors and stronger but lighter internals such as the crankshaft, pistons, con-rods, and bearings. All necessary systems and parts are updated or strengthened to handle the extra power the GT-R50 puts down.

All things said and done, this GT-R was sure tuned the right way. Italdesign and Nissan will officially unveil the GT-R50 at an event in Europe this July.

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