To Japanese car nuts, the letters GTR carry the same gravity as, say, the letters “COPO” or “CJ” or “SRT”  do to domestic gearheads.

Nissan first applied the famous GT-R badge back in 1969, to denote a performance variant of its Skyline passenger car.

Note: Don’t confuse the Nissan Skyline with the Ford Skyliner—they’re totally different cars. 

In anticipation of the oil crisis, Nissan discontinued the Skyline GT-R in 1973.

Almost two decades later in 1989, it came back in a big way—bringing a new 300+ horsepower 2.6L twin-turbo inline six with it.

The new Nissan Skyline GT-R became a fierce competitor in FIA Group A racing, where it earned the ominous nickname “Godzilla.”

From there, the GT-R gained fame both on the race track and in pop culture—appearing in dozens of movies and video games throughout the last two decades.

These Skyline GT-Rs are often referred to as their respective generations, R32 (1989-94), R33 (1995-98), and R34 (1999-2002).

After another brief hiatus, the GT-R broke away as a trim level on the Skyline in 2009 to become its own marque. Now officially just called “GTR,” the new supercar bested performance benchmarks from names like Porsche, Corvette, and Ferrari.

A 2013 GTR Nismo N-Attack is currently the 8th-fastest production car to tackle the famed Nürburgring circuit. 

Under the hood is a 3.8L twin-turbo V6 making (depending on the year/tune) anywhere from 480-550 horsepower. Power is sent through a dual-clutch automatic transmission, on its way to all four wheels.

With help from its all-wheel-drive configuration, various publications are having no problem ripping off sub-12-second quarter mile ETs in stock dress.

But perhaps the biggest news about the re-christened 2009 Nissan GTR was that it is finally being sold in the United States.

Previously, Skylines weren’t available in the states, which meant that to get a Skyline GT-R here, you needed to endure a complicated and lengthy bureaucratic process. Even then, the chances for getting a Skyline on American roads were slim.

Note: That is gradually changing thanks to relaxed laws concerning imports more than 25 years old, meaning that foreign-market cars from the early 1990s are starting to trickle in. 

When we saw a GTR pull into the Summit Racing retail store parking lot in Tallmadge, OH, we knew it had to be a Lot Shots feature.

We’re pretty sure this is a 2015 version, here’s why:

  • It’s got the headlights from the 2014 refresh
  • It’s wearing the stock 2014 and 2015 wheels
  • It looks like the taillights are the whole-circle LED rings from 2015+

But…we’re far from experts at Japanese supercars, so correct us if we’re wrong in the comments below.

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Author: Paul Sakalas

Paul is the editor of OnAllCylinders. When he's not writing, you'll probably find him fixing oil leaks in a Jeep CJ-5 or roof leaks in an old Corvette ragtop. Thanks to a penchant for vintage Honda motorcycles, he spends the rest of his time fiddling with carburetors and cleaning chain lube off his left pant leg.