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16 Jan 2015

Nissan GT-R

Nissan GT-R R35

Red Cars are Faster

Text and photos: Reinis Babrovskis

You have a track car? That’s cute… 
What do you think of a 1000hp “daily”? Yeah that’ right, this stunning Nissan GT-R has a pumping whopping 1000 horsepower heart under its bonnet while being used as a daily commuter for the last 4 years.
The owner of the car Simon has a history of mentally insane vehicles and his lust for more power is never ending. His previous car Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VII ended up so modified and fast it could no longer be used as a normal car forcing him to search for an alternative, “it was an unfortunate project built on the mainland that never really quite delivered”, lessons were learned and an M3 was a short term alternative but it was never enough.
Simon’s mind was set on a crazy project and the rules were simple: “Your mission, should you chose to accept it, is to build a project car that is reliable, comfortable, useable for the daily commute, run on 95 RON Fuel, be mentally fast and wait for it…have no less than 1000 horsepower.” At this stage many would just hang up the phone, so finding a tuning company bonkers enough to attempt to build such a car was tricky enough. Luckily for him a Northern Irish car tuning company - Momentum Motorsport were just as crazy and happily accepted the challenging job. Andrew from MM has built multiple award-winning race cars and project cars over the years; yet this was one of the most challenging projects he had undertaken.
First and most important decision was the choice of the base car that theoretically would be even capable of such things. That was easy as the Nissan GTR R35 was the obvious choice. Since the launch of the new era “Godzilla” in 2007 the iconic Japanese sports car (even though no longer technically a Skyline) has been tuned around the world with incredible power results from its 3.8 twin turbo V6 engine. If the stock 485hp engine wasn’t a good enough reason for the choice, the ultra-stiff chassis for the ultimate driving experience was. The car was bought in 2010 with merely 4k miles on the clock.
It didn't take long before the work begun in 2011 as the GT-R was treated to the Litchfield Stage 4 engine tuning. The upgrades included larger Bosch injectors, large bore intake kit, Miltek Y-pipe and exhaust system, Litchield improvements on the launch control, maps, ignition control, boost control and many others.
A year down the line the GT-R received further upgrades – the Litchfield Stage 5. In 2013 it received the Stage 6 that included bigger intercooler and fuel pumps. Guess what – in 2014 Simon returned to Momentum Motorsport to obtain the Stage 6+ - yes you guessed it – even bigger intercooler and fuel pumps as the engine maxed out due to the restrictions. Finally the engine was producing the figure he was after – 1000bhp. When running such power the fuel pumps have to come from nothing else than a Bugatti Veyron, pistons have to be made from high specification aerospace alloy; everything has to be perfection, with no room for error. When we opened the bonnet I expected a fire spitting, oil throwing beast under the bonnet, but for my surprise I couldn’t be more wrong – the engine bay was simple, clean and there was no evidence that this engine is a full-on animal with its place in a cage. Surprisingly the engine and exhaust at idle is very quiet and shy; however, when the taps open the fat lady can sing, and damn well I must say, the exhaust and engine certainly come alive when the rev needle travels north. And would you believe if I said the 1000bhp engine can still return 20mpg on a normal drive?
When it came to the exterior Simon acknowledges the GT-R design is a true masterpiece and needs nothing, only a few personal touches were added. The Americans worked on the rear of the car, while the Europeans designed the roof lines and the Japanese perfected the front; so look from it whatever way you want it – the car will appeal to everybody! The car is finished in stunning red (best colour for them if you ask me).
Race car’s best friend - carbon fibre can be found across the car, in fact the entire bootlid along the ducktail spoiler weighs less than an average modern smartphone. The 20” BC Forged complements the bodywork beautifully and the red & black colour combo looks spectacular.
The attention to detail and perfection doesn’t stop with the engine of the car. Simon’s approach to the interior was simple - less is more. By default a Nissan GTR cockpit is very complicated – the racing game Gran Turismo designers were in charge of the design of the centre console; therefore, it is of no surprise that one requires a 5 day training course to operate the dials, switches and the complicated buttons. Adding more gauges or cluttering the interior was out of the question. Instead Simon focused on improving what was already there - the Recaro seats complemented by a Momentum Motorsport logo received a custom trim in nappa leather and dark grey alcantara with custom diamond red stitching. Loads of carbon fibre accents can be found within the interior, including the gear shift surround, steering wheel and centre console. Rear seats were removed and replaced with a beautiful audio build consisting of 2 rear subwoofers and amps illuminated in a matching red LED light surrounds.
GT-R is a vehicle that can break the law of physics with its colossal traction and manoeuvrability like no other; however, to cope with the increased power understandably there was an urge for an upgraded suspension and brake system. The stiff coilover setting might not be the ideal daily set up but a compromise had to be made to retain the superb handling of the car, especially while having a spirited run on the bumpy Irish roads. In order to stop the slightly insane beast the AP 410mm big brake kit was chosen for the job. Toyo Proxies P888 were the tires of choice and I must admit they certainly handle the 1000bhp without a problem.
This car is a proof that a joint ingenious engineering work both from Nissan and Momentum Motorsport can see a reliable daily car with 1000 horsepower. Si’s beautiful and scary GT-R is certainly the most impressive daily car in Ireland. When the car is so fast you do need health warning labels on it you know you’ve done something right!


Carbon Fibre Roof Skin
Carbon Fibre Ducktail Boot Lid
Carbon Fibre Accents Throughout
Carbon Fibre rear diffuser

Brakes, Suspension & Tires:
AP 410mm Big brake kit front and rear
Nitron Coilovers
20” BC Forged Wheels
Toyo Proxies P888

Custom trimmed Recaro Seats
Half Roll Cage
Carbon Fibre Accents Throughout
Rear seat delete with a custom built sound system with 2 rear subwoofers and 2 Amps, with custom red LED light surrounds

Litchfield Sport Engine 3.8 litre producing 1000hp
Litchfield GTR Pistons produced by Capricorn from proprietary high specification aerospace alloy
Litchfield GTR Engine Rods with unique oil grooves and squirters to improve bearing oil supply and to cool pistons for improved performance. Beryllium Copper small ends offer the best friction reduction
ARP Main stud bolt kit
Engine internals and Crank dynamically balanced
Blue printed engine block with oil and water ways smoothed, enlarged and cleaned to removing original casting marks and rough edges
Litchfield Blue Printed and High Pressure Oil pump for more consistent flow at high rpm and power levels
Litchfield Ported and polished cylinder heads with knife edge port separators and valve seat profiling
Litchfield Combustion Chamber modifications to improved squish and detonation reduction
Litchfield Sport Camshafts with increased lift and duration whilst maintaining excellent idle control and low speed performance
Litchfield custom valve springs which insure correct valve pressure but with reduced valve train noise
New bearings, engine gaskets and seals
Litchfield 1000 bhp + intercooler kit
Litchfield Large intake manifold
ANSU battleship fuel system with Bugatti Veyron fuel pumps
6 x 1100cc injectors
ETS GT3586HTA turbo Kit
Nuke Performance Blow off Valve (BOV) kit
Litchfield 102mm exhaust
ECUTEK ECU mapping
Upgraded gearbox with Dodson circlips and Clutch

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