WekFest Long Beach 2012

This Year at WekFest Long Beach was a great turn out. Tons of the best cars you’ve ever seen. Check out more pictures on our Car Show Page on Clutchrides.com!

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2012 Nissan GT-R

Okay, first things first: the revised 2012 Nissan GT-R (or GT-R Supercar, as Nissan calls it; or Godzilla, as its fans call it) now produces 530 horsepower. That’s up from 485 horsepower, which, apparently, was just plain not enough.

It’s all about turbochargers. Bolted onto a fantastic 3.8-liter V6, of course. Pump up the boost of the twin turbos, open up the air intake, adjust the mixture and tweak the valve timing, expand the exhaust, and you’ve just obliterated the 500-horsepower barrier. But before you peak there, you’ve got 488 pound-feet of torque (up by 54) to blur your eyeballs from a standing start.

But don’t let the sheer horsepower impress you too much. Nissan has gone over their Godzilla top-to-bottom to make sure the rest of the car’s performance can keep up with the added horses. There’s a long and impressive list of improvements, mainly to the chassis and aerodynamics.

 

The body shell has been stiffened with carbon fiber reinforcements in front, and a new brace for the strut towers. The suspension geometry has been tweaked and new shocks with lower friction installed. The all-wheel-drive system has an electronic decoupler that disengages power to the front wheels to reduce understeer, in those situations when the tail wants to hang out there where it belongs, with its friends in those Japanese drifting movies.

Lighter 20-inch forged aluminum 10-spoke wheels, bitchin’ in black, reduce unsprung weight for better cornering. They feature new knurling to keep the tires from rotating on the wheels when that humongous torque is hammered to the pavement. The Vehicle Dynamics Control has been adjusted to provide better response off the line. The brakes have been upgraded with a thinner rotor that improves pedal feel and increases fade resistance. Naturally, the GT-R uses a 6-speed twin-clutch automated manual transmission with paddle shifters.

Downforce has been increased by 10 percent and the coefficient of drag reduced to 0.26 from 0.27. The underbody diffuser has been extended, and there’s a new sculpted rear fascia that’s longer and lower. New vents on the lower rear fenders and fascia draw out hot air. At the front, an enlarged fascia with aggressive fins improves cornering stability, and wider grille openings flow more air to the radiator and brakes.

But don’t let all this talk about speed fool you. The GT-R is known to be well-mannered and easy to drive on the street. And that aspect has been enhanced too, with a new SAVE mode added to the VDC that optimizes torque and modifies the shift mapping during highway driving to improve efficiency. There’s also a new ultra-low precious metal catalyst that slightly improves fuel mileage while dropping CO2 levels enough to meet SULEV (Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle) standards.

Inside the cabin, there’s new carbon fiber trim and upgraded materials. And if you demand exclusivity, there’s a new Black Edition that comes in Jet Black with its own 6-spoke black RAYS wheels, and adds custom red-trimmed Recaro seats with a black-and-red interior and dark headliner.

The GT-R has been around for four years, although because it’s a so-called supercar, it’s fairly rare. But even at $90,000, there now might be more of them with this 2012 model. Godzilla has fully arrived.