Beater or Sleeper? GT6 Car of the Week Thread

Discussion in 'Gran Turismo 6' started by McClarenDesign, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    -REMINDER-

    For our #GranTursimoTuesday races tomorrow, you won't be limited to just the Primera. Feel free to bring the G20, or anything else that fits the regulations... so long as it's Japanese!
     
  2. XDesperado67

    XDesperado67 Premium

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    Mount Panorama Motor Racing Circuit.jpg Junior Exec
    So I gave the car a slight makeover that included shaving the hideous stock spoiler, redristributing its weight while lowering and firming up the suspension and a healthy power boost to bring the car to 450PP.
    Then took the Primera to the NA: 500PP Clubman race at Bathurst.
    As you can see other than some scratches on the front bumper from the M3 GTR pulling a blocking manuever on me the car had no problem making short work of the field. Above photo was taken on 2nd lap and the 3rd lap saw me open up a nearly 10 second lead.
    While far from the quickest car at 450PP it can be a fun ride and push the pace a bit.
    Not bad considering its an FF four door sedan.:cheers:
     
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  3. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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  4. iainn

    iainn Premium

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    I did something similar and got mine to 271bhp and 471pp, but added a huge spoiler and went off to the IA 550PP World Touring Car Championship. Will post pics and more later.
     
  5. Niku Driver HC

    Niku Driver HC

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    Well, everyone's going for that BTCC look, aren't we? I'm afraid I haven't traveled down that route, I prefered to keep the car(s) road worthy. One Primera is stock, another has received some upgrades for 180-plus hp and lost its wing. I also bought a Infiniti, which has been pumped up to 300 (yikes!) hp, but I restrained myself from placing a super ugly wing at the back (I don't do ricers, haha). I'll post my history with this dynamic trio of sedans soon.
     
  6. McClarenDesign

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    sorry for missing last night, we'll try again tonight at 10p. Hopefully I'll have a new wife by then.
     
  7. Nurburgthing.

    Nurburgthing.

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    Good to see the Primera getting some love. always liked getting this out and surprising a few people at The Ring with it.

    I always wished for the touring car versions, another coin in the well wasted...
    [​IMG]
     
  8. un4givn85

    un4givn85

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    oh good i didnt miss anything
    tho i dont know that i can make it tonight either, i have class until 8 MST so by the time i get home and have some dinner you guys will be racing already
     
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  9. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    Such an epic photo!
     
  10. Vic Reign93

    Vic Reign93 Premium

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    Primeras back then were quite popular choices for racing, Matt Neil was the first independent cup racer to win an overall victory in a red Nissan Primera at Donington park. Coincidently its also where the man piloting this black Primera Keith O'dor had a huge roll over at the Old Hairpin which he walked away from.

    download.jpg
    (not the exact car he was driving at the time but pretty close.)
     
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  11. Devil240Z

    Devil240Z

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    G20 is a total sleeper.
     
  12. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    I'll be hosting the CotW races tonight at 10p CST, if you guys can make it.
     
  13. Niku Driver HC

    Niku Driver HC

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    Not to mention that in Japan, when the rules stated that the Skyline R32 was no longer allowed in the JTCC (Japanese Touring Car Championship for the rookies out there), the Primera served as Nissan's main weapon, with the likes of Masahiro Hasemi and "Japan's fastest man" Kazuyoshi Hoshino behind the helm of these fire breathers.
    primera1.jpg

    (Hoshino's Calsonic Primera. Yes, the Calsonic livery was not used only on Skylines... ;))

    Sadly, I can't join you in the races, but I'll enjoy seeing replays of these cars being given the proper shoving around some twisty tracks (where this car excels). :cheers:
     
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  14. XDesperado67

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    Good racing with the Primera's everyone.:tup::tup:

    Must say I got on much better with at least a semi tuned version than the stock one though.:lol:

    @McClarenDesign any chance you can let us know what PP we will run for race nights in advance?
    I know we usually start at stock PP then go to max but not always. Also knowing if we need both a completely stock car in addition to a tuned one and if NOS will be allowed in advance would help out greatly.:odd::drool:
     
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  15. JackRyanWMU

    JackRyanWMU

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    Yeah, I got thrown off a bit because I thought it was supposed to be "Any car you want as long as it's Japanese," only to have it turn to, "Spend six figures tuning up this car, because now it's the only option."
     
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  16. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    Sorry, Jack, I had completely forgotten. As for early PP notice, I'll do what I can, but some venues are spontaneous.
     
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  17. Vic Reign93

    Vic Reign93 Premium

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    Seems like it was all pretty damn close racing and whilst I couldn't make it, I did buy and prep a Primera with a O'dor tribute flat black paint job and a full N/A build up. 281hp in a sub 1 tonne body. :tup:
     
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  18. Baron Blitz Red

    Baron Blitz Red

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    Thanks for letting me participate last night! I really got to get out and race online more, it seems way different. Good pick as I was thinking I had NEVER driven a Primera/G20 before and was basically clueless as to it's racing history.

    Cheers
     
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  19. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    That's the beauty of this thread, finding new gems!
     
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  20. Niku Driver HC

    Niku Driver HC

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    The Adventures in the world of Simplicity: Nissan Primera 2.0\Infiniti G20 Part 1: Story
    Boy, do I have a story to tell you, my dear readers. This is the tale of the chap that told a 'Murrican "Test a Nissan Primera.".

    It all began a few weeks ago, when I was racing in the Red Bull X2014 Standard Series, after a race in Trial Mountain. During the race, I rolled the car (blame them annoying curbs and their effect on these aerodynamic cars), which in turn caused my head to bang on the canopy. In the pits, my mental condition was not the finest, as yours truly was struggling to construct decent phrases in the proper order. And then came this American man asking me if I could help with his "Car of the Week" article for some important magazine. Sadly, my co-workers did not aid me in saying something that made sense, so my answer came out like this:

    "Hurg derp bazinga Primera argh 1990."

    Not my finest hour, clearly. So, the American man, claming that it would be difficult to write a review on it, but it would be done, walked off, leaving my so called "teammates" to explain that I had just told him to review a Nissan Primera 2.0. Why? Why was the word Primera the first cohesive thing in my mind? Why did I not say Ford Taurus SHO, or Lotus Carlton (great suggestion for the next COTW, by the way, the Lotus)? Why the Primera? Was I high on some ilegal substance?

    As it turns out, there was a method in my (literal) madness. It all happened when I was the happy owner of a Playstation Portable. PSP's own Gran Turismo might not be the greatest car game in the console's history, but it did introduce me to this 5-door rectangle with four wheels. Because I was a impulsive car buyer, I bought anything that could be bought on the day the game was going on, including these old cars that I had never driven. Expecting very little from it, I threw my Primera into the High Speed Ring. And then my poor expectations were transformed completely, when I found out the real Primera hidden beneath the dull body. The car was far more agile than most Japanese cars of its era, and the engine was not doing half-bad either. The car became my own guilty pleasure, as I'm a sucker for simple but fun cars. This weird relation took a turn for the even crazier in GT5.


    The car had impressed me so much, that I suggested one of the tuners of the garage I work at, the Outlaws (now known as the Clueless over the Hill garage in GT6), Onboy123, to tune a Primera for me. The result, "K. Hoshino", was a impressive, 300-plus hp sedan with a tendency to oversteer (!!!) and a stellar handling. So yes, this car has potential, but how did it end up this way?

    Nissan, in the late '80's, had a relationship going with Volkswagen, which gave our Japanese friends the chance of learning the trade of building a Euro-centric car. Using the car of many names, the Volkswagen Santana, Nissan got acquainted with the process (and how hard said process is), learning some valuable tips for the future. As it turned out, that future was not far away. Nissan, tired of staying behind their rivals, started a project, project 901. There isn't much information on this subject, but our friend Narrator-san tells us that said project had the objective of delivering the best handling cars of its time. One of the project's results was the Skyline R32, which should not need a introduction, I think. Apparently, the Primera was one of other members of the 901 (Peugeot didn't sue Nissan over this type of namesake, like they did with Porsche?) group.

    In order to find out, I went to a Nissan dealership, to buy a Primera and see for myself...

    Stay tuned for part 2!
     
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  21. iainn

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    I really liked this one, especially with the added power and lowered ride.

    Initially I took it out to my usual Brands Indy circuit and came home in a fairly pedestrian 1:01.7, but after a loads of engine tuning and fully lowered suspension it only took 50.935 seconds to get round!

    With 271 bhp and 1031kg weight the Primera was a lot racier and there was a lot of wheelspin pulling away from corners even with RH tyres.
    [​IMG]

    Having had enough of time trials for a bit I tried entering the 550PP World Touring Car Championship.

    The first race race saw me come home in a creditable 4th, the lead BMWs were just too far away, but the rest were caught fairly easily on the twisty sections of Grand Valley.

    [​IMG]

    The second race was in Tokyo and I only managed 8th as the opposition was too fast on the long straights.

    Next up was Mt Panorama and again the best I could get was 8th, meaning a 7th place finish in the championship overall. Not bad considering the Primera was probably underpowered compared to the opposition and I don't really know anything about tuning!

    All in all another good choice for COTW as it won't have been tried by many of us in the past.

    [​IMG]

    Cheers
     
  22. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    @iainn what were your suspension settings? I wasn't happy with my 2 minute setup on Wednesday.
     
  23. iainn

    iainn Premium

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    @McClarenDesign
    Height 75mm
    Spring 5.20/2.75
    Damper c 4/4
    Damper e 4/4
    Anti roll 4/4
    Cambridge 0/0
    Toe 0/0.2

    Racing Brakes 5/5

    No idea if it's near optimum or not!
     
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  24. S30Zenzow

    S30Zenzow

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    Found this thread just now and decided to test the Primera/G20. I already had one Primera I bought some time ago along with some other cars to tune to the 500pp range for no particular reason (really, never used any of the cars), so I decided to buy a brand new one, and chose a dull colored Infiniti G20. I instantly took it to Bathurst to test it, and it took an eternity to finish a lap, as it was quite slow. Soon after I finished my second lap, my GT6 started showing some sound glitches, which made me restart the game. Then, I decided to take it to Matterhorn, as I thought it would be a nice place to test it, with great elevation changes, some high and low speed corners, and a pretty fun layout. Started doing some laps, and keeping an eye on the lap times. As I was doing some 2:09 stock, I set the goal of completing a lap under 2:00 without any modifications to the engine or gearbox.

    With that goal set, I bought a fully customizable suspension kit and LSD. With some tuning, I reached 2:05. Then I decided to buy Sport Hard tires, as the Comfort Soft that came with the car were struggling for grip all the time, forcing me to go really slow on the corners in order not to crash or run into the grass. That done, I started to shave some time, reaching the 2:02 first, then reaching low 2:01 and high 2:00. It was just a matter of fine adjustments on the suspension settings in order to break the two minutes barrier. With that done and a triple plate clutch bought, I tried one more time. Used every last bit of grip of the tires, squeezed every one of those 100 something horsepowers from the 2 litre engine, and finally did a 1:59.901.

    After having accomplished the challenge I had created for myself, I bought a set of BBS wheels and painted them Stormbeige Metallic, and had another go at Matterhorn. This time, I fitted the rear wheels with CS tires and the front with SH, just to reduce the understeer. My solution worked beautifully, as I did a 1:58 in the first lap in my first one without spinning uncontrollably after dropping a wheel or two on the grass (that downhill section after a quick right hander is really challenging, thus, rewarding when done right).

    Anyways, I took some pictures of my 1:58something lap, so I thought I'd share with you guys. Enjoying the G20 so far, seems like a really nice car, I'd call it a sleeper.

    [​IMG]
    Trying really hard not to lose speed in the esses right at the beginning of the lap.

    [​IMG]
    Fast and really fun corner just before the "roller coaster".

    [​IMG]
    Getting a little air time before that steep downhill braking zone.

    [​IMG]
    1st gear around this really slow hairpin. Going from first to second on the G27 shifter requires a bit of luck to get it right without losing a lot of time, no idea why...
     
  25. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

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    -McClarenDesign's-
    Super Best Friends Super Aguri Super Review of the Car of the Week
    “The cover is totally audacious, absolutely intolerable and completely irreverent. Who prints such nonsense?” -Nikki Lauda

    Week 6: 1990 Nissan Primera 2.0Te / Infiniti G20

    I doubt that you'll notice, but look around anyway. The next time you're purchasing groceries, clothing, electronics and yes, even automobiles; have a look around. Amongst the varying degrees of detergents, breakfast consumables, designer jeans and economical hatchbacks, lies the root of the problem. Again, yes, there are varying degrees of each, but the fact that you haven't noticed shows exactly why it's such a problem. Had I not mentioned it, however, you'd have never noticed and would continue to contribute to the problem on a daily basis.

    One of these things is just like the other.

    We've become a planet of reckless consumers, quick to snatch up on "the latest trend", regardless of how ridiculous it is. For my generation, this began with an alteration to the original formula of a fizzy drink. Trounced by the competition, Coca-Cola decided they'd had enough and set about introducing a new formula that was "better" and "would change everything." Blind taste tests proved the company right; it was better, and chosen by more tasters than either the competition, or the original formula. Job done, right?

    [​IMG]

    Wrong. Despite the millions invested to alert the public at large, the public backlash was great enough for the company to return to an admittedly worse formula after only 77 days of agony. Imagine creating the cure for cancer, only for children to mock you because they enjoy their chemotherapy. After years of marketing research trying to determine where they went wrong, the only thing everyone could agree on was that Coke had seriously misjudged loyalty to the original product. By making such a big fuss about the change, they'd struck the match that would eventually become a firestorm. Had they kept quiet and simply changed the formula without telling anyone, it likely would've worked.

    It isn't just Coke, either. Countless companies have offered products that did everything they were intended to do, but because of the poor marketing and research beforehand, wound up in the graveyard along with Coke II. From bicycles produced by Smith & Wesson, to cologne from Harley Davidson, many have found ways of making a good thing seem bad. For instance, would you eat a microwaved meal from a toothpaste producer? Neither would I.

    [​IMG]

    According to Polyphony Digital (via Translator-san):
    Which brings us where we are today, sampling two cars made by the same company, but not if you ask either. Perhaps, coming from Nissan, we shouldn't be surprised. If you've ever dug under the hood of a twin-turbo 300ZX, you know that the maker's tagline should be "well... it's not that simple." Founded in 1911, Kaishinsha Motorcar Works produced its first car in 1914, the DAT, named as an acronym for three partner's surnames. Four years later they'd become Kaishinsha Motorcar Company, then DAT Jidosha & Company Limited just seven years after that. A year and a merger with Jitsuyō Jidōsha Seizō Kabushiki-Gaisha later, they were then known as Datto Jidosha Seizo Kabushiki-Gaisha, or DAT Automobile Manufacturing Company, Limited. So while I might get some criticism for the lengths of my reviews, the Japanese were only allowed to shorten the manufacturer's name, to Lila, from only 1923 to 1925.

    "Well... it isn't that simple." In 1930, the Japanese government finally allowed average citizens to operate automobiles under 500cc without a license. In 1931, the Tabato Casting Company purchased DAT Jidosha & Company Limited, became Jidosha Seizo Company, and produced the Datson Model 10 the following year. The "son" was later changed to "sun" because the former held a negative connotation within Japanese society, and if it isn't completely obvious by now, foreshadowing. Once again, a year later, Jidosha Seizo Company was swallowed by the Ishikawajima car company, financed by Nihon Sangyo. Using the financier's first two syllables, Nissan was created.

    [​IMG]

    Performance (as purchased): February 1, 2014, Dark Blue Pearl (Blue) *'90 Nissan Primera 2.0Te
    Displacement: 1,998
    Max. Power: 148 HP @ 6,500 rpm
    Max. Torque: 137.2 ft-lb @ 6,500 rpm
    Drivetrain: FF
    Length: 173.2 in., Height: 54.5 in., Width: 66.7 in., Weight: 1,170 kg
    Tires: Comfort (Soft)
    Performance Points: 368
    Mileage: 163.4 mi

    Having followed all of that, you'd be mistaken if you think that it gets any less complicated from there. When Kaishinsha Motorcar Works started in 1911, only 43 cars had been made in Japan, and most of those were prototypes or knockoffs. By 1935, Nissan was purchasing what would become the Yokohama plant while making Austin Sevens under license. After the a few wars, Nissan merged with the manufacturer formerly known as Prince (not Prince), and eventually dropped the Datsun name in 1981 because they finally, finally wanted a single name. President Kawamata said "Looking back, we wish we had started using Nissan on all of our cars..."

    Really? You think?

    From that automotive primordial ooze drips what we have here today, the 1990 Nissan Primera. Introduced as a replacement for the Bluebird in Japan, it was also designed to appeal to European drivers by being even more bland-looking than the Mercedes, BMWs and Audis of the time. As such, it's a fantastic car to drive, but most would never know it because of the way it markets itself. The styling doesn't say "I'm fun to drive!", it says "would like like a warm glass of milk before your nap?" Richard Hammond once said that "it's a good car in a crap suit" and I'd have to agree. It does nearly everything you'd want it to, except the one thing that gets buyers, and that's simply appearing attractive. Despite generations of evolution from the Darwinian automotive culture of Japan, I have a hard time distinguishing between this and my father-in-law's Lexus ES 250.

    "One of these things looks just like the other..."

    [​IMG]

    Performance (as purchased): February 3, 2014, Dark Gray Pearl Metallic (Gray) *'90 Infiniti G20
    Displacement: 1,998
    Max. Power: 148 HP @ 6,500 rpm
    Max. Torque: 137.2 ft-lb @ 6,500 rpm
    Drivetrain: FF
    Length: 173.2 in., Height: 54.5 in., Width: 66.7 in., Weight: 1,210 kg
    Tires: Comfort (Soft)
    Performance Points: 366
    Mileage: 64.5 mi

    The legend of Nissan Z cars is quite long, and best left for another review. Suffice it to say that despite its success, Nissan kept the Fairlady moniker in Japan to distance itself in case Datsun folded. The theory was that if the Z-cars obtained the same reputation as those under fire from Ralph Nader, then the Nissan name wouldn't be harmed by the subsequent public backlash. What they didn't calculate, much like the aforementioned Coca-Cola, was brand loyalty. Despite spending $550 million between 1983 and 1986, Datsun was still recognized far more than the Nissan label. For decades they'd shun any press report with Nissan and Datsun mentioned in the same sentence, only to spend millions of dollars later trying to convince you that "The name is Nissan."

    I've listened to a few economical boffins explain the Plaza Accord, and how it eventually lead to the creation of Infiniti. While I don't claim to have understood a single word of it, it did seem to make more sense to me than shuttering Datsun in '86, yet secretly exploring the concept of Infiniti in '85. Producing cars in the same country that they're sold in certainly makes sense, even more so considering that Japan's finite resources typically require that the raw materials used to produce cars must be imported, rather than harvested locally, because there aren't anymore left. But wouldn't changing Datsun's name and using the existing network of customers and dealerships have been a better strategy? The way that GM usurped it's brilliant ideas known as Geo and Saturn, for example.

    [​IMG]

    In the early 1990s, the top three in Japan went after Europe's elite in the United States and other opening markets across the globe. Honda introduced Acura, targeting its audience towards Mercedes-Benz buyers by offering Honda cars with sharper styling lines and penchant for terrible turn-in understeer. Toyota created Lexus as its luxury brand, but instead of aspiring to keep pace with Mercedes-Benz and BMW, it actually beat them in studies conducted by Car and Driver and Automobile magazines, despite costing much less than either. If there were a polar opposite to Lexus, it'd be Nissan's efforts with Infiniti. While Acura garnered praise for its RSX, then known by the same Integra moniker as it's Honda sister, Infiniti was trying to woo desperate housewives into the G20.

    One of these things doesn't belong...

    In fact it was so bad that for the first year, Infiniti commercials didn't actually feature the car. Instead of taking pride in their luxury and innovation, voice actors waxed poetic about how Zen it felt to drive but not see one. The initial teaser begins with the sentence "Since now, everything you know about performance motoring, is in the past." This is later followed by "It's designed to give you breathing room, while taking your breathe away, all at the same time.", and "The new performance car for a country called Europe." In America, they proudly proclaimed "Born in Japan. Educated in Europe. Now available in America", and despite persistent cuts to the American education system, Americans still aren't buying it.

    [​IMG]

    Jean-Pierre Diernaz, marketing director of Infiniti Europe, said at the time of Infiniti's European launch “As well as raising awareness of Infiniti Europe, this campaign is about building brand familiarity so consumers understand what sets us apart from the competition. Performance motoring and graceful strength are at the heart of the brand, which is something we are keen to convey with this campaign.” What he accomplished, at least among advertising experts, was one of the best jokes produced by the Plaza Accord. Richard C. Zien, of Mendelsohn/Zien Advertising Inc., said "Despite the fact that it's a great car, very few people are secure enough to buy a $40,000 product that has become the subject of jokes." That's the crux of the problem that Nissan faces still to this day, offering the 370Z for nearly $10,000 more than its rivals, the Mustang GT and Hyundai Genesis, even though it offers fewer standard features. No rev-matching manual transmission is going to convince buyers that the extra cash is worth it.

    Compared with its Primera counterpart, the Infiniti is a full 40 kg heavier, thanks to leather seats, heated mirrors, alloy wheels, posh-but-heavier stereo system, air conditioning and disc brakes all around. Even the engine is standard equipment, while on the Primera you'd have to check the appropriate boxes to even come close to this level of equipment. Although nicer to be in, the added weight does serve a penalty, embellished by the underpowered inline-4 under the hood. In order to compare the two, we've taken them both to the Tsukuba circuit and pushed them as far as they'd go.


    Despite being front-wheel drive, the multi-link suspension does make up for the inherent disadvantages of the layout by keeping the car flat, especially important at Tsukuba. During its time, Infiniti touted the suspension's resistance to leaning mid-corner as both a performance and safety feature. While that certainly is understandable, and especially given our previous experiences on two wheels in the Alpine A110, I still don't understand why this would be used as a tool to bait a woman that had intended on buying a BMW. While the Primera can't be accused of having the terrier-on-cocaine turn-in of the BMW, thanks again to the inherent flaws of front-wheel drive, how many soccer moms drive with that level of performance on a consistent basis? Canadian hockey moms, sure, but in America with its 25 mph school zones?

    If there was one thing I did like, it was they way the car felt in and out of the turns. It wasn't as urgent as a sports car, nor as sloppy as a Cadillac, but a pleasant mix of the two. It made me want to do another lap, and I don't get that sensation in many other cars. This brings me right back to my point about renaming Datsun, as both cars could've easily sat beside each other in a side-by-side dealership like Chrysler uses to sell Jeeps. There's no need to dump $550 million, and if there were, you could spend that money actually making a Formula 1 car instead of just putting a sticker on one and claiming it for your own.


    After ten laps, the Primera scored a best time of 1:10.559, a very respectable time given the power to work with, but again, that was hardly noticeable because of the way the car felt. Given the extra weight, we fully expected the Infiniti sister car to be a tad slower and less responsive. While the weight didn't help, the Infiniti did manage to keep it close. Only 0.635 slower over the fastest lap, a 1:11.184 was the G20's best time. Even though it was only 40 kg, the weight took away some of the eagerness in the suspension, and with it a lot of the fun. Bear in mind, compared to the Primera this is a luxury car designed for comfort over performance. The suspensions might be the same mechanically, but I'm absolutely positive that the G20 is just a touch softer. It's more harsh that the BMW alternative that the ladies were originally after, but then again all the money saved by purchasing this could be used buying shoes instead. From that perspective, perhaps the salesman has a point... but only if the buyer hadn't yet driven the BMW.

    Given the Primera's fun factor, the leap towards racing comes as no surprise. In 1998 the car won the British Touring Car Championship, but not before the next generation P11 was introduced in 1995. Nissan has had a rich racing heritage, reaching as far back as 1936 with the Sports NL 75 at the Tamagawa Speedway. Since that time, they've won a World Rally and Touring Car championships both at home and abroad, won at Le Mans and other lengthy endurance races, and even supplied engines to Indycars using the Infiniti name. Although Infiniti currently sponsors the reigning Formula 1 world champion Sebastian Vettel, it's likely due to their failures to win the Indy 500 that have kept them from making the final transition to Formula 1, unless Renault decides to purchase them outright. After glancing through Nissan's history, the idea of a rockstar CEO like Carlos Ghosen usurping Nissan and giving it yet another name doesn't entirely sound far-fetched.

    Except Ghosen seems to understand how branding works, how marketing works, and that changing the name likely would lose customers instead of attracting them. After all, would you buy a Renault GT-R, or a Peugeot 370Z? Could you fathom buying anything that came with the name "Pissault"?

    [​IMG]

    In Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespear points at the ridiculousness of placing importance solely on a name alone. Even the great Carroll Shelby once replied "If it's a good car, the name won't hurt it. If it's a bad car, the name won't help it." when asked whether or not the Cobra moniker would hurt the sales of his roadsters. As history shows, it didn't. And now, with over 100 years of experience creating and selling cars, you'd think that Nissan would have learned a lesson or two in that time. Except they haven't.

    When Nissan announced that the R35 GT-R would not carry the Skyline name, thus breaking tradition and sending Skylineophiles into labeling disputes that carry on to this day, Infiniti dealers were told that it was their turn. The next halo car for Infiniti would bear the mark that dealers had been lusting after since R34s and the Playstation game system had given the forbidden fruit to the American masses. Just as quickly, on April 12th, 2006, rockstar CEO Carlos Ghosen snatched it right back. The American Skyline became just another letter with numbers amongst the alphabet soup that is Infiniti's line up, but at least its suit was nicer than the G20's. Infiniti dealers haven't forgotten about that day. In what can only be seen as instant karma coming to get them, Infiniti is now seeking to distance itself from Nissan, asking to become an entity entirely it's own. Meanwhile, equally as karmatic, Nissan's announced the return of the Datsun nameplate to new markets, as well as contemplating the return of its iconic 510 sports car.

    Born in Japan... many times over. Educated in Europe... sort of. Now available in America... before it becomes French. The name is Nissan... depending on who you ask.

    *The views and opinions expressed in this review do not necessarily reflect those of the manufacturer, the publisher, GTPlanet.net or it's members, nor anyone with an IQ above 3. If you have a history of epilepsy or seizures, consult a doctor before use. Certain patterns may trigger seizures with no prior history. Underage sale is strictly prohibited. Before using see the instruction manual included with your system for more details. For previous reviews, please visit: McClarenDesign's Very Serious SLS AMG Reviews of the Car of the Week N Stuff. Void where prohibited. All videos were filmed before a live studio audience. Car setup monitored by Dark Lion Racing's GT6 Tunes and Tricks app on Android, as administered by Super Best Friends Super Aguri. Contains wheat and soy ingredients. No goats were harmed in the making of this review that we are aware of. This product may cause significant hair loss, headaches, and damage to the immune system. Best wishes to Michael Schumacher! To advertise, contact McClarenDesign@gmail.com.

    -Super Previous Super Reviews-
    Insightful... but bollocks: Introduction To Failure (or How I went from a Very Serious SLS AMG to Super Best Friends Super Aguri)
    Week 1: '10 Peugeot RCZ

    Week 2: '88 Volvo 240 GLT Estate
    Week 3: '87 Buick Regal GNX
    Week 4: '57 BMW 507 vs '55 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL
    Week 5: '72 Alpine A110 1600s vs '72 Alpine A110 1600s (15th Anniversary Edition) vs '73 Alpine A110 1600s
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2014
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  26. Niku Driver HC

    Niku Driver HC

    Messages:
    9,232
    Location:
    Portugal
    The Adventures in the world of Simplicity: Nissan Primera 2.0\Infiniti G20 Part 2 (and final part too): Euro-centric, at last?

    "Previously on the Adventures:

    Herg derp bazinga Primera...

    Why a Santana?

    In order to find out, I bought one..."

    Yes, the thrilling finale is upon us, but first, let's get back in the groove and return to our last save point.

    Of course, finding a Primera now is not a hard task, but the dull design doesn't make it any easier. Not to mention that the Nissan dealership is one of the most populated in GT world. I heard it has quite a big skyline (I regret nothing about this joke, I state that right now), but the Primera was my main target. So, armed with the green bills, I became the happy owner of a 5-door sedan with a small wing on the rear. Sucess!

    Silverstone_ Stowe Circuit.jpg

    Nissan Primera nº2. Codename: Latio. Not modified in any way
    Ah yes, my dear friend Latio. Why did I say it is "nº2"? Because it was the second Primera I bought. What about the other one, you ask? We'll get to that later. For now, let's focus on the car at hand.

    Latio, as you can see, is as dull as they come. It doesn't have any wrong angles, but it also doesn't have any brilliant ones, a classic Japanese design for sure. Of course, since it is a Standard car, the all black interior will be literal, since these cars suffer from "Black Hole" syndrome, a PD-type disease. Poor thing... Anyway, with the keys in hand, I wasted no time in throwing this into a race track, for testing purposes. And soon I came into the pits with a conclusion:

    "We need new shoes."

    "Shoes"? By this I meant "tires", I just wanted to sound fancy. The piss poor Confort tires Nissan supplied us were no good when confronted with Stowe's finest corners, and it showed. The car was understeering all over the place, not to mention the absurd tire squeal that came with said understeer, the suspension couldn't be any less pleased with this rubber waste. So, in true race team fashion, we threw the tires into the bin and got ourselves brand new sporty rubber, surely the car would complain less if we gave it proper shoes, right?

    Yes, and don't call me Shirley. The understeer was reduced significantly compared to the confort rubbish I had to endure, and the suspension was enjoying the newfound grip and resistance the new tires offered. This is a good time to talk a bit 'bout said suspension.

    Nissan broke all the Japanese conventions when they released this. The Euro-driver could care less about unrivaled confort if the car swerved like a boat and gave up under the pressure of a mountain road. According to the GT2 profile of this car, Nissan used a multi-link suspension at the front, but they also used struts for the rear. Of course, the Japanese brand went the extra mile and set this system with a stiff-biased behaviour. So stiff in fact, many Japanese consumers complained that the suspension was too stiff! Nissan was giving no flocks about the complainers, though, they knew the old Japanese sedan style was outdated. Euro tastes demanded a safe car, but one that could provide them loads of fun at the same time. Ask the French, their sports sedans were the Eden of car handling, the Pug 309 GTI, the Renault 19 16v, those cars were confortable, but they could also carve their name on a road if they wanted to. In order to dominate Europe, the Japanese had to drop their idea of a sedan, or change it into the idea the European people wanted to see. And this car made that dream possible.

    Everything about this might confuse the driver at first. Why is this box handling so well? Why is the engine so willing to push the car along? Why is everything so sporty, when the FF namesake is attached to this? The 2.0, 16-valve engine is not even turbocharged, but has enough oomph to push the car past the 130 mph mark. What black sorcery is this?

    No matter what, this car has so much potential, but you'd be hard pressed to find it under such a uninspiring body, that's what shocked me when I first drove it around the High Speed Ring. It is far more agile than most of its local rivals, it makes a Corolla look like a old people's house in Florida. Nissan proved that above all, one could stick to its guns, as long as the bullets pierce armor. And let's not forget our American friend (not Mclaren, the other one):

    Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit.jpg

    Infiniti G20. Codename: Gung-ho Jones. 300-plus HP engine.
    Yes, this is where Infiniti first began their career. And yes, that is a SRT Viper BEHIND (key word) it. In order to fight Lexus and Acura, Nissan created a luxury brand in order to grab a piece of the USA car market, and the G20 was its harbringer. Funny that a car like this was the foundation for a luxury brand, eh? But no matter what, the selling point was still the same: this car is fun to drive. These words, written in many different ways, were the words Infiniti wanted to point out to their rivals. Our car is confortable, but fun. F-U-N. Lexus can't say that about most of their cars, now can they? Jones was also one of the tuning test mules, used to see where this could go if I gave it some beans. Or in this case, the whole pack of beans...

    Jones was sent to a American car-only race in the English track of Brands Hatch (grounds this car is very familiar with), packed with a huge turbo, many juicy parts, and proper Sports tires, and then, it perfomed a miracle. Simple as that. Even though I did not set the suspension (or the LSD, for that matter) up for this, the car still went out there and drove like the agile corner-thrashing car that it is. Of course, this came at a price, in form of my old enemy: understeer. Adding more horsepower to a FF car has the biggest of all drawbacks; we can never forget that these chassis, for the most part, weren't made to couple with 300 hp engines. The wheels will remember this fact and then they will start to cave under the sheer power we add to them when we try to tackle a corner. This car can work with 300 hp, but I think it is pointless to do it. Why?

    City of Arts and Sciences - Night.jpg

    Latio and my 180-hp Primera, nº1 "Wingless Angel"
    Personally, I think this car can be better suited to a mild tune, rather than a full tune. Angel wasn't even that modded, but it still beat a NSX-R around Brands Hatch during a NA-only race. This car doesn't need 300-hp, I felt Jones was complaing about it with that understeer while trying to beat a Viper. Why waste money to push a car like this to a level where buying a Skyline makes more sense? Yes, I'm guilty of doing so, but it proved that this car does not like being overpowered. You don't ask a low budget FPS game to be Call of Duty. You don't ask a old 1970 Super Robot anime to be a Gundam show. And you don't ask a quiet boxy sedan to be a Skyline. The Nissan Primera sticks so close to the definition of a "sleeper" that it hurts. Especially if you remove the wing. The key point here is this:

    People might find difficult that someone enjoys driving a box like this, but when they look through the front windshield to take a look at the driver, they see that he likes it.

    And that he's smiling about it.

    The end
    Pros:
    • Stellar handling
    • Rightfully priced
    • Can be turned into a super Touring Car if you wish, with little difficulty
    Cons:
    • Not much graphical detail
    • Beware of understeer when tuning it
    • Why does it look so boring?
     
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  27. JackRyanWMU

    JackRyanWMU

    Messages:
    530
    Location:
    United States
    This week's review may come from the "Better Late Than Never" Department here at Car of the Week, but this was due mostly to having difficulty coming to a conlcusion on this car. On the surface, nothing seems that special about the Primera. The styling neither offends nor excites, the engine only puts out a mild amount of power, there's nothing about thie car that stands out and screams, "I'm special!" I can imagine more than a few American Nissan Dealership managers raising their eyebrows quizically and asking, "I'm supposed to sell this as a luxury car?" the first time they laid eyes on the Primera with the Inifiniti badge on it.

    However, it's my duty to give every car we review a fair shake, so it was off to Grand Valley East for the usual laps in pure stock form. There are a few minor quibbles I could make about this car, such as the unexciting engine note or how the transmission seems to take an eternity in 3rd gear to make enough RPMs to reach 4th. But overall, it was hard to fault the car. It handled the corners with competence and provided a predictable and stable ride throughout the track on a way to a best time of 1:24.375.

    [​IMG]
    Hard on the brakes for turn one.

    [​IMG]
    Let no one say I wasn't trying to get every tenth I could out of the car.
    Not a bad showing, but still nothing really special about the car was presenting itself. However, a line in the car's description had caught my eye; "More European than most European cars." I knew I had to find out whether there was anything to that line or if was just mere marketing spin. So I searched for a front-wheel drive European sedan with a similar PP rating. The closest I found was the longwindedly named, '98 Alfa Romeo 166 2.5 V6 24V Sportronic, with a PP rating just 9 points above the Primera, but a price tag three times more than the Nissan. How close would the Nissan come to a more costly, more powerful, but also more heavy European foe?

    The result, was something special it turned out. My best effort on GVE in the Alfa was a almost a full second slower than the Nissan, at 1:25.330. Most laps it was closer to two seconds off the Primera's best time. Even with extra power, the 166 could only match the speed of the Primera through the front straight and the fast section past the first turn. Once the cars reached the twisty bits before the tunnel, the Nissan always pulled away, the heavier Alfa having neither the nimbleness nor the crispness of handling that the Primera possessed. (The Alfa PR Rep at the track was so embarrased by the result that he wouldn't allow any pictures of the 166 in this review.)

    So, it turns out there is something special to this car after all. In fact, I'll be the first to admit that it's truly a Sleeper. That said, even after all the laps turned in it and it proving that it is something special....it hasn't endeared itself to me. Unlike the BMW 507 and the Alpine A110, which both made me grow fond of them, made me want to drive them more, and made me see them almost as having souls, the Primera to me is still just a car, just a machine.

    And finally, I can't end this review without mentioning that instead of buying this car for 23,000 cr and spending another six figures tuning it up to a 500 PP beast, you can spend a little less than that initial 23,000 cr and get a car that's already close to the 500 PP mark.

    [​IMG]
    This is such a hard choi.....actually, no, this is a pretty easy choice, honestly.
    So, while the Primera may be something special, it's just not that special for me. Which means it's likely destined to spend its days sitting in a dark corner of my garage, collecting dust.

    Sorry, Primera. It's not you, it's me. Promise Camaro and I will write sometime. Sincerely, Jack.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2014
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  28. McClarenDesign

    McClarenDesign Premium

    Messages:
    5,785
    Location:
    United States
    Congrats to Vic Reign93!

    Hope you're able to join us this week, Vic, since it's you that's selected....

    The '03 Acura CL Type S!

    [​IMG]

    Is there a Honda version?

    So, it's the '03 Acura CL Type S / Honda Accord EX!

    Apparently this car was so good, they spent 2 million just for this ad alone-

     
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  29. Vic Reign93

    Vic Reign93 Premium

    Messages:
    2,461
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Thanks McClaren. :tup: It'll be quite interesting to see how the CL stacks up to Honda's US version V6 Accord.
     
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  30. Baron Blitz Red

    Baron Blitz Red

    Messages:
    2,175
    Location:
    Canada
    Well after digesting the spiels from both the Acura and the Honda salespeople, I chose the Honda. Possibly due to fact I just could not get over the Acura guy saying this "luxury coupe" was created primarily to take on the BMW 3 series and or the Mercedes CLK. After performing their duties reviving me, the paramedics were informed of what caused my intense shock, and promptly gave the salesman the bill.

    After calming down, I took my Accord to the secret COTW test track, Stowed away somewhere in some non-descript location. Starting off in sixth place, the first car I passed was an older Nissan, looking strangely familiar to me. Primera eh? Hmmph. Deftly dodging another 4 cars, I was clocked passing the line around 1:02ish, which wasn't too bad for my 1st try in this V6 powered FF car. We shall have to see what she says after some attention is paid to her by the boys at the shop, and a bit more experience with her.

    Cheers
     
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