Though it had no brand new models to show at the Chicago Auto Show, Nissan entertained the crowd with new variants of its two most exciting cars – a more hardcore version of the GT-R supercar dubbed the “Track Edition” and an updated 370Z Nismo coupe. The former is a US-specific model, with Japan and the UK already enjoying the “Track Pack” option on their GT-Rs since last year.
The GT-R Track Edition goes away with rear seats, replaced with ‘lightweight quilted cloth mat’ to reduce weight. Which is just as well really, as you’re not likely to take passengers round a track anyway. Developed at Nürburgring Circuit (where else?), it also features a specially tuned suspension, new brake cooling guides, front spoiler with carbonfibre air ducts and, get this, high-grip front seats.
Suspension changes include bespoke Bilstein DampTronic gas pressure shock absorbers and higher spring rates that have been fine-tuned through rigorous track testing. Oddly enough, the 545 hp/630 Nm engine is left unchanged, as is the six-speed dual-clutch transmission. Production will be limited to 150 units for the US market.
The 2014-model year Nissan 370Z Nismo, being an annual model update rather than a new variant, carries minimal changes. The tweaks are all purely aesthetics too, with the 3.7 litre V6 engine left completely unfettled. It follows the new Nismo design theme introduced on the Juke Nismo, adding dark gray painted front apron, side skirts, rear diffuser, side mirrors and rear spoiler. They each have red pinstripe accents on them too.
The theme continues inside, with splashes of red on the new Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel and Nismo tachometer. Power and torque remain at 350 hp and 375 Nm respectively, all driven to the rear wheels through the standard six-speed manual gearbox. Sport suspension, high performance brakes and lightweight 19-inch forged aluminium-alloy wheels round off the racing-inspired sport package.
So there you go then, two specially prepped Nissans. One for the racetrack and one for the road. Pick your poison.