Nissan was a tour de force back in the late 80's and early 90's. They say the best offense is a the best defense...what if we clash two unyielding offenses together? Enter the Nissan R32 Vs. Z32 300ZX showdown.
The focus is on the R32 GT-R. It appeared in 1989 and it was shortly nicknamed Godzilla. The Skyline was a monster on the track and in keeping with its Godzilla name, fought aliens and freaks of nature in order to protect the city. It came in coupe form only and was crammed full of electronic know how that transcends everything you know about performance.
Badass sedan version need not apply
The ATTESA-ETS (Advanced Total Traction Engineering System for All- Electronic Torque Split) was the brains behind the AWD system. The bulk of the power goes to the rears, but 50% of the torque can be thrown to the front as needed. That's why drifting this AWD puppy is as natural as Jello Pudding! As if that wasn't enough, Nissan threw in a Super-HICAS all wheel steering to make it a damn fine handler.
The R32 was armed with the legendary RB26DETT twin-turbo, 2.6L Inline-6. This engine was a cold blooded racing spec engine derived from Group A detuned for road use at 280 HP. The engine may or may have not understated numbers because of the whole gentleman's agreement caps. 0-60 came in at 4.8 seconds which was on par with Ferrari's finest. Throw in the fact that it completely dominated in Group A racing and I think we have a solid contender on our hands. But will it be enough?
The Nissan 300ZX was the same as the Skyline...continuing on their birthright names. The Skyline and Z cars have a legacy that has been immortalized among car enthusiast. The Z32 that steps up to the plate is the twin-turbo spec weighing in at 300 HP. Equipped with the venerable 3.0L DOHC VG30DETT V-6 VVT.
This car was the first production car in the world to be designed using CAD software on Nissan's cray cray super computers. It also was a real looker (remember, we're talking about 1989 here!). It was praised by everyone and anyone, Car and Driver has it on their 10 Best List for 7 consecutive years (which is every year it existed in the U.S, FTW!). Motor Trend also saw pure awesomeness, giving it the 1990 Import Car of the Year award.
Just like the Skyline, The Z32 had the crazy Super-HICAS (Super High Capacity Actively Controlled Suspension) all-wheel steering that could turn the rear wheels a full 2 degrees at speed. It was a champion, besting the Rx-7, Corvette, and Porsche 968s from the heyday regularly in comparison tests.
It wasn't just a show boater either, It's even deadlier than its looks.It crushed the competition in the IMSA GTP classes and was crazy successful in the GTS-1 classes too, winning the 24 hours of Daytona and the 24 Hours of Le Mans that same year. The 300ZX was just too awesome for its own sake; IMSA had to lower the allowable horsepower restrictions to even the playing field, effectively barring the Z32 from competition in its current form.
So what's it going to be? You've seen both sides to the same coin, now what are you going to call...heads or tails?