CARS.COM — The race-ready variant of Nissan’s all-wheel-drive supercar, the GT-R, appropriately made its global debut for the 2017 model year today at Germany’s famed Nürburgring racetrack. The automaker has updated the GT-R NISMO inside and out, both for improved performance in a pack and livability on the street.
Related: 2017 Nissan GT-R: First Look
“Despite its more potent nature, the new GT-R NISMO boasts better overall balance than before, evolving into a car that can be enjoyed on a winding mountain road, as well as on the local race circuit,” Nissan said in a statement.
Exterior changes are geared largely to improving aerodynamics on the track. In addition to an aggressive new look for the front end courtesy of new lower-body elements, designers enlarged the dark-chrome grille for maximum air intake with minimum effect on wind resistance. A reinforced hood, Nissan said, resists deformation at extreme speeds. The front bumper uses multiple layers of carbon-fiber sheets overlapped to create stiffness, while small wings on the lower front end improve airflow around the car and generate high downforce.
The supercar’s dimensions remain unchanged with the exception of its length, which grows 0.7 inch to 184.6 inches. Width remains 74.6 inches, height 53.9 inches and wheelbase 109.4 inches.
Nissan said the refreshed cockpit goes for a more upscale feel, featuring a redesigned dashboard and steering wheel — both covered in Alcantara simulated suede — and a carbon-fiber center console. The heavily bolstered, Recaro-brand sport seats, meanwhile, are covered in leather with red faux-suede inserts. The center stack layout has been improved and simplified, according to the automaker, reducing the number of navigation and audio controls by more than half to just 11, enlarging the multimedia touch-screen to 8 inches and adding large, readily identifiable icons for ease of use.
Under the hood, the GT-R NISMO’s twin-turbo 3.8-liter V-6 returns, as does its 600 horsepower and 481 pounds-feet of torque. The engine is mated to a six-speed dual-clutch transmission. Nissan said the stiffened structure enabled engineers to refine the GT-R NISMO’s shock absorbers, springs and stabilizers for enhanced handling. Driver-selectable modes for varying conditions come courtesy of the GT-R’s Bilstein DampTronic system.
Nissan did not immediately announce pricing for the 2017 GT-R NISMO, which will be available in four colors: silver, red, black and Pearl White. The 2016 version starts at $151,585, including a $1,595 destination charge; with the Titanium exhaust system, that price jumps to $164,485. For comparison, the “regular” 2016 GT-R Premium trim starts at $103,365, including destination, and makes 545 hp and 463 pounds-feet of torque.
The GT-R NISMO is expected to launch in the fall. To tide you over while you wait, check out the gallery below.