Godzilla's Revenge: Next GT-R to Bring Class-leading Fastness, Brick-like Styling

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
godzillas revenge next gt r to bring class leading fastness brick like styling

Nissan launched the GT-R as successor to the high-performance Skyline variant of the same name. Considering the old platform’s reputation as a giant slayer, expectations were incredibly high, but Nissan surpassed them when it launched the GT-R in 2007. The following year, “Godzilla” reached American shores to embarrass most everything on four wheels — getting a little faster every year until it plateaued around 2013.

While still one of the quickest vehicles most people will ever lay their chapped and quivering hands upon, the R35 GT-R is no longer impervious to counterattacks and remains fairly expensive. It’s also getting very old. A technological marvel when it debuted, the GT-R has lost its edge and has gone from a totally unbelievable sports car to one that’s just stunningly impressive.

Nissan can’t have that.

Speaking to Autocar at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Nissan design head Alfonso Albaisa said the next-generation GT-R absolutely must be disgustingly fast.

“Whether we go to a lot of electrification or none at all, we can achieve a lot power wise,” Albaisa said. “But we are definitely making a new platform and our goal is clear: GT-R has to be the quickest car of its kind. It has to own the track. And it has to play the advanced technology game; but that doesn’t mean it has to be electric.”

Since it sounds like the model is still in the development stage, Albaisa didn’t have much to share. After all, he doesn’t even know if it’s going to be electrified or not. But we did like the picture he painted. He claimed the next GT-R would have to exude power without catering to the sleek beauty of a supercar.

“It’s an animal; it has to be imposing and excessive. Not in terms of its wings, but rather its visual mass, its presence and its audacity,” he said. “It doesn’t care what every other supercar in the world is doing; it simply says: ‘I’m a GT-R, I’m a brick, catch me.’ It’s the world’s fastest brick, really. And when I review sketches for the new car, I say that a lot: ‘Less wing, more brick.'”

The design head was clear that the R35’s successor wouldn’t take cues from the GT-R50 (pictured) that appeared at Goodwood over the weekend — which is a little confusing, as the concept definitely borrows from the current-generation GT-R. Presumably, that means the new car also won’t borrow from the vehicle it’s replacing.

Maybe it’s simply a case of office politics. Nissan probably can’t say it’ll borrow from the GT-R50 since that was designed in cooperation with Italdesign. Unless they have a hand in the new super coupe, using their work could be tantamount to theft. But, whatever it ends up looking like, Nissan will have to bump up its output well beyond the current GT-R’s 565 horsepower if it’s going to adhere to Albaisa’s lofty promises. It’s almost unfathomable to entertain the idea that the company could deliver another car like the R35, but the GT-R badge has been all about exceeding expectations since 1969. We think it’s entirely possible Nissan Godzilla will return angrier than ever.

However, such a vehicle is likely to be several years away from gracing a production line. “The challenge is on the engineer, to be honest,” Albaisa said. “We will do our jobs when the time comes to make the car something really special. But we’re not even close to that yet.”

Let’s wish them luck.

[Images: Nissan]

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3 of 20 comments
  • Blackcloud_9 Blackcloud_9 on Jul 17, 2018

    I guess I'm in the minority here but I think the car looks stunning. The original/current GT-R was never a beautiful car but this looks like a worthy successor. I hope they borrow heavily from it

    • Arach Arach on Jul 17, 2018

      I agree. Stunning and beautiful. But for some reason the general populous seems to like ugly cars that suck. "Give me a poop colored car that looks like a wedge of moldy cheese with a massive fake grille please" - General car buying populous.

  • Iamwho2k Iamwho2k on Jul 17, 2018

    Looking back, the R32 is the best-looking Godzilla, but I guess the designers have decided that *overwrought* is the future of car design.

  • SilverCoupe I am one of those people whose Venn diagram of interests would include Audis and Formula One.I am not so much into Forums, though. I spend enough time just watching the races.
  • Jeff S Definitely and very soon. Build a hybrid pickup and price it in the Maverick price range. Toyota if they can do this soon could grab the No 1 spot from Maverick.
  • MaintenanceCosts Would be a neat car if restored, and a lot of good parts are there. But also a lot of very challenging obstacles, even just from what we can see from the pictures. It's going to be hard to justify a restoration financially.
  • Jeff S Ford was in a slump during this era and its savior was a few years away from being introduced. The 1986 Taurus and Sable saved Ford from bankruptcy and Ford bet the farm on them. Ford was also helped by the 1985 downsize front wheel drive full sized GM cars. Lincoln even spoofed these new full size GM cars in an ad basically showing it was hard to tell the difference between a Cadillac, Buick, and Oldsmobile. This not only helped Lincoln sales but Mercury Grand Marquis and Ford Crown Victoria sales. For GM full size buyers that liked the downsized GM full size 77 to 84 they had the Panther based Lincoln Town Cars, Mercury Grand Marquis, and Ford Crown Victorias that were an alternative to the new GM front wheel drive full size cars that had many issues when they were introduced in 1985 and many of those issues were not resolved for several years. The Marks were losing popularity after the Mark Vs.
  • SCE to AUX Toyota the follower, as usual. It will be 5 years before such a vehicle is available.I can't think of anything innovative from them since the Gen 1 Prius. Even their mythical solid state battery remains vaporware.They look like pre-2009 General Motors. They could fall hard.