Skyline: The Evolution of a Japanese Legend


Our Favourite Skylines


We love the Skyline. You love the Skyline. Let’s face it, everybody loves a Skyline. But the model had evolved hugely from its first conception at the end of the fifties to the current supreme example of passionate Japanese engineering and design. The GT-R Spec V is targeted specifically at enthusiast drivers who desire race car-level performance in a street-legal vehicle.

Developed around the multi-dimensional Nissan GT-R sports car, which was introduced just more than one year ago to universal global acclaim, the new SpecV model builds on the original’s “ultimate supercar that anyone can enjoy driving anywhere, at anytime” philosophy – taking it to an entirely new level of “oneness between man and machine.” The SpecV model includes unique body, interior and performance equipment and modifications, raising the GT-R’s unmatched performance to even higher levels.

The GT-R SpecV’s new exterior features include a carbon fibre rear spoiler, a carbon fibre grille, and carbon fibre brake ducts. The SpecV is available exclusively in Ultimate Black Opal (RP) body colour. Inside, the SpecV’s unique two-seat interior (non-SpecV GT-R models also include a two-place rear seat) offers special Recaro carbon fibre bucket seats, while carbon fibre insets embellish the rear centre storage box, instrument panel and other trim areas.

Performance is enhanced with a new high gear boost control device, which momentarily increases boost of the engine’s twin turbochargers for greater torque in the intermediate-to-high speed ranges to provide a more powerful feeling of acceleration, while also allowing the engine to operate at a lower speed for improved fuel economy. Other modifications include a titanium-coated exhaust system and carbon-ceramic brakes that provide powerful stopping performance.

The GT-R SpecV is also equipped with lightweight, racing-style forged aluminium wheels that were developed for this model and have been sold by Nissan Motorsports International (NISMO) since September 2008. The lighter unsprung weight provided by the new wheels, together with the enhanced braking capability, an exclusive suspension and high-grip tyres, combine to deliver the SpecV’s exceptional performance.

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30 Responses to “Skyline: The Evolution of a Japanese Legend”

  1. Ray Pearson

    Nice picture of the first Skyline, I’ve just bought one – but mine is called a “Hillman Minx” Seems like this is yet another copy of a British vehicle copied (and generally improved upon) by the Japanese. Ah well, what more can you say.


    Oh what arrant nonsense. Carbon fibre spoilers. 0-60 times, absolute power. All to flatter the below the belt aspirations of all those who might be challenged in that region and who probably could not adequately control these machines when these funtions came into play….

  3. @Paris
    what a load of nonsense….you have clearly never been in such a machine let alone own and enjoy one
    …bit like the tyre kicker who says of a Ferrari, “not very practical is it….wouldn’t get your weekly shop in that…..who needs all that power when the speed limit is 70mph…..etc…etc….etc
    Go out and buy a R34 GT-R (if you can stomach the embarassment), drive it then review what you’ve written. I’m sure reluctantly you may then start to see the point of such a car

  4. Geominceur

    banzai has it absolutely right. There are those who like to whine about how impractical etc. performance cars/bikes are. Yep, it’s often correct but the same could be said of Studio flats. You can just hear them whingeing “not a lot of use if you’ve got a big family’. Of course not, if you have a big family you have a larger house, if you need to carry 5 kids and a weeks shopping then you go and buy a people carrier or whatever. I had 5 kids at home at one point and what did I have? Yep, a people carrier, however I also had a Mk1 MR2 – purely for fun. I’ve only got one at home now so, I’ve got an MG ZS180 actually quite practical but I got it FOR FUN! If I had the money I’d have something grander like a Maserati and why, because they’re fun. Why can’t people just shut their mouths about other peoples lifestyles if they don’t like them and just leave those of us who enjoy a bit of speed and impracticality let us get on and enjoy our lives. Hmm rant over! Apologies to all for the length.

  5. Terry Inskip

    I owned a skyline r33 gtr vspec 12 years ago. i previously owned and chipped up all the ranges of cozzies, sierra, sierra 4×4 Escort, Granada, none of which were in the same class as the r33. i might add that since i departed with it i have had the 355 ferrari, 360 modena, lambo gallardo and now the 360 spider. And yes i still miss the sheer torque of the r33. Absolutely amazing power. Paris sounds like a very jealous person who has never drove anything apart from his peugot 206.

  6. Samuel

    Ferrari Performance, super reliability and an enthusiasts car that you can take the family out to do the shopping in! The japs have everything covered!
    I laughed at the Hillman Minx comment, My dads dad had one of those! Although it was always breaking down, I doubt a single piece of even the first 1990 Skyline GTR range bears any resemblance in design or parts used to the Hillman.
    You see folks, The Japs realised that they could do alot better than the s***e the british developed. I wouldn’t touch a British car in these times, …wait a moment, we don’t actually manufacture or mass produce our own cars anymore do we.. maybe because we were so c**p at it? 🙂

  7. Skyline Man

    If you have never owned and lived with a Skyline don-t make comments about them.

    They will run circles around any Ferrari/Porsche, especially when tuned to well beyond any Italian/German Manufacturers wildest dream – and what car holds the Nuremburg Ring fastest lap – SKYLINE.

    No more needs to be said to you idiots who have dissed this car.

  8. Anonymous

    What a great car, perhaps not so rewarding for hardcore drivers cause of all the electronics involved in making it so good.

    I don’t think its a k**b enlargement, I doubt many people outside enthusiasts know what it is, stick with your Porsche for that “Paris”

    Cant see the relation between the hillman & the GTR there, maybe its just me.

  9. DodgyD

    I totally agree with pmbanzai. People who feel the need to post negative comments about subjects like this are really just wasting their time and effort. And to myself and most others, their opinion is completely worthless. If you don’t have a positive view on articles of this nature, why read them in the first place.

    As for the Nissan GTR, it is pretty much entirely an enthusiasts car. In my mind it is designed and built for the sole purpose of pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with a road going vehicle, to the limits of performance and far beyond. It has certainly done that and by a long way. I must admit, I haven’t had the pleasure of driving one yet myself, but I’m sure it won’t be long before I do and I know 100% I will not be disappointed.

    Personally, I think Nissan/Datsun have made some the best cars around, but I would, I’m mad on them. I say mad because I currently drive a Sunny. No, not a GTiR or anything like that, but an H reg saloon, the old boxy looking ones that look like the kind of thing a 5 year old would draw. Go on, you can all laugh, but I’ve had many oppotunities to get something others would call ‘a decent car’ and I’ve knocked them back every time. See what I mean, MAD!! But, when you can make a fool of the boyracers in their Saxo VTS’s and other so called ‘hot’ hatches by beating them off the lights in it, it’s hillarious! The look on their faces of total disbelief, I can’t help but laugh.

    Oh dear, now I sound like a Chav or something. But then again I can’t be, they wouldn’t want to be seen dead in my car!! 😀

    Hmmm, think that’s enough of me going on and on, but one last thing. I don’t race, it’s not the kind of thing I do on the roads, I value my licence thank you very much. So anyone offering to beat me in their souped up little boyracermobiles, I’ll only decline. But if you’re unfortunate enough, maybe you’ll have the pleasure of becoming my next victim on a track somewhere… Hahahahaha!!! 😉

  10. papercutout

    I’d want any of these skylines:
    R32 GTS-T
    R31 with an RB30
    2000 GT-R
    C110 GT-R

    And thats about it!

    I almsot bought a C210 a while back, but didn’t have the space or the funds. Would have had a few jap touches for sure!

  11. clayxblade

    Had my skyline since 1996, i bought a two year old import, i have done 50k miles in it and apart from a new rear section of exhaust and the timimg belt i have nothing to it apart from a bi-annual service, still rides beautiful and when i get around to putting some polish on it it still looks stunning!!

    It had some 18inch BBS II wheels fitted prior to me buying it.

  12. Muzzaman

    I must admit as an avid Japanese car fan some of the comments on this page are very ignorant, uneducated and extremely silly.

    Comments like:

    “All to flatter the below the belt aspirations of all those who might be challenged in that region” – I really don’t see the relevance of this comment in regard to cars! Jealousy maybe that they cannot afford or afford to run such a car?
    Surely they have to have some interest in cars or why ready this article? Or maybe the have just plain ignorance of what a performance car is and it’s purpose.

    I have no problems in the trouser department, and my sole reason for owning a Skyline (yes I have one and thus warrant the right to have an opinion from first hand experience) is the pure adrenalin rush from such a car.

    Maybe this guys adrenal glad doesn’t work? then fine feel free to drive about in a “Euro box” like everyone else and keep your pointless, frankly uninformative and useless comments to yourself.

    As for the people out there who say “Jap cars ain’t my thing” I applaud you and respect the fact you have different tastes.

    For all the Jap car fans I’m with you all the way!

  13. Muzzaman

    Oh and one more thing, Paris: I’m sure your car control is exceptional compared to all of us! What do you actually drive???

  14. Nissan make a fair few amazing sports cars. I actually picked a Nissan 200sx S13 over an R33 GTS for the sheer explosive excelleration and tail happy personality (and there were no GTR’s going at the time), but the R32, R33 and R34 are all amazing cars. My 200sx I’ve now had for nine years, it’s modified to 250bhp and the only thing that’s ever needed replacing is the starter motor. A credit to Nissan’s craftmanship.

  15. I own a Focus ST but luckily have had the pleasure of driving a few Skylines and was mightely impressed. If i could afford to buy,run or insure one i’d have one now and would keep it forever,they are fantastic cars. The new GTR is the ultimate dream car for me. Any one with a Skyline gets my respect,no daft bodykits mind you! Keep them original,long live the Skyline……

  16. big ben

    i think all of the skyliner range are super cars i am thinking very hard about buying the new skyliner gtr spec v a cracking car will leave many cars standing

  17. clayxblade

    totally original and no daft body kit on mine

    they don`t need it!!!

  18. I remember very well when the garage I managed changed from selling British Leyland too Datsun (Nissan). Over night the warranty claims disappeared. The quality control was just amazing. The old 120Y engine and others in the range had such fine tolerance control on the engine you could not hear them when idling. The gearboxes were like silk. One mistake Nissan made was a collaboration with Alfa . Alfa made a Nissan Cherry with an Alfa boxer 1.2 engine. Compared with the Japanese Cherry 1.3 it was just awful. The quality was dreadful and the engine had no torque which is what made the Japanese cars such a delight to drive. The reason why modern cars are made better than they used to be is because of the Japanese. We have alot to thank them for. GT-R is just one example.

  19. Caroline


    All I can say is you are an air thief – GO AWAY and play with your handbag/manbag whatever and leave the lads and girls that enjoy and appreciate the beauty, craftsmanship and pure engineering genius of this exceptional car to enjoy it without having to listen/read your banal comments.

  20. Ok wait a minute guys , and ladys ….. Paris has an opinion , but this is why the cars like the skyline were and are made to prove a point over the old school way of thinking .
    Think about it the italians , body lines to die for engines that sound great .Americans big v8s in all sorts body types , great fun but room for improvement .The English had Jaguar , aston martin etc known for great looking cars , good suspension and a good turn of speed and then along came The Japenese who gave then all something to think about . And they do it so well .

    Paris who ever you are …. i think you should think how far we have come in the car industry , and what you drive in your car what ever it is , the skyline has had it for years or been testing it or making it better.
    And if you ever get to drive an std 300bhp +/- skyline or more , down to get your paper or go to an event or to the track …one thing is for sure you will wear a smile on your face , because you know what you have .
    I owned one , my wife drove it , my dad of 70 years old drove it …. we all loved and it satisfied our driving styles .
    So Paris good luck , your comments did stir us up ….but really you don`t know what your missing ……….

  21. banzai

    Guy’s & Gall’s, interesting comments. This is evoking the same kind of passion you get on the GT-R Forum, which proves the point…….it’s all about passion.
    I would challenge any passionless individual to play passenger in my R34 GT-R round the full GP circuit at Brands……and not get a woody (or female equivalent!!!)
    I’m afraid you would have to be clinically dead not to feel something
    And to me that’s what it’s all about in this sanitised, Health and safety world we live in
    Go on Paris…..spoil yourself… may prove to be a journey of self discovery….LOL

  22. DiverNic

    Hi All, I currently drive a Mitsubishi 3000GT(GTO) and have to say when you have a lot of power, having a lot of electronics standing by to help out when you screw up is very reassuring. I think the Vspec sounds delicious and would love to own one – guess I’ll have to wait a few years and get one 2nd hand.
    The Universal hate figure that is Paris has every right to post his opinion no matter how wrong, foolish and reactionary it might be, I do think now is the time he should hand in his drivers licence as he probably should take the bus with all of us petrol heads on the roads! We are scary with our big fast cars.
    ‘Nuff said, Japan keep ’em coming!

  23. Generic Viagra

    Paris who ever you are  think you ought to think how far they have come in the automobile industry , and what you drive in your automobile what ever it is , the skyline has had it for years or been testing it or making it better.
    And in the event you ever get to drive an std 300bhp skyline or more , down to get your paper or go to an event or to the track  one thing is positive you will wear a smirk on your face , because you know what you have .