First European test of 2013 Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 demonstrates pace offered by upgrades
JRM test highlights immediate potential of car for teams and driver looking for competitive and affordable GT3 car
Daventry, UK – Following a successful four day test held in Portimao this week, engineers of the Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 believe the raft of 2013 performance upgrades have delivered significant improvements in both qualifying and race pace. Despite the test car not benefitting from all the planned 2013 engine upgrades, the changes to the suspension and a substantially revamped aero package enabled JRM test driver Peter Dumbreck to consistently lap substantially faster than the sister 2012 spec car running at the same time. JRM, manufacturer of the car that came close to securing the British GT crown in its debut year, was also able to capitalise on the comprehensive track time to work through its entire test programme, as well as allowing potential customers to try the car.
"The test gave us four full days running in predominantly dry conditions ,working through aero and damper set up changes to optimise the car ahead of homologation," says JRM’s Nigel Stepney. "The drivers reported turn in is significantly improved and the repositioned rear wing is more efficient than last year’s, resulting in downforce without the drag."
The potential of the car was underlined as, together with planned engine upgrades due ahead of the next test in January, the NISMO and JRM partnership will realise a further weight reduction of 20kg. “For instance, we have taken the opportunity to upgrade the heavier production headlamps for carbon fibre units,” adds Stepney. “Shedding some weight will enable us to optimise balance ahead of final homologation.”
In addition to Dumbreck, drivers from the UK, Europe and the Middle East that are considering the Nissan sampled the 2013 spec car. Competitive pricing, some £50,000 lower than similarly specified cars, led to ten drivers making the trip, including British GT4 champion Jody Fannin. “The 2013 car immediately instilled confidence and I was able to set competitive lap times on an unfamiliar circuit after a handful of laps,” says Fannin “I found it well balanced and very stable. It was particularly strong under braking and on turn in. I'm sure it'll be a competitive proposition in 2013.”
JRM is already planning a further test in January 2013 ahead of the Balance of Performance trials when potential customers can also drive the car.