NISSAN SKYLINE R34 GT-R

AN ICON OF THE PLAYSTATION GENERATION AND REGARDED BY MANY AS THE ULTIMATE RENDITION OF THE VENERABLE GODZILLA

WORDS & PHOTOS ALEX AFFAT

NISSAN’S HEROIC GT-R has well and truly come into its own in terms of collectorship in recent years.

Beginning with the iconic Bathurst-devouring R32 GT-R, then by the further developed and honed R33, rounding out the RB26-powered R-chassis lineage with the much-celebrated R34.

All cars are enjoying their limelight in the secondhand market with prices of all generations roughly doubling, some even more so, in the past decade.

While R32s and R33s were once $15,000 performance bargains, both now command easily upwards of $30,000, with R32s climbing even higher thanks to its unique Australian motorsport provenance. Three Australian-delivered examples sold for $64,000, 70,000 and 87,000 respectively at a recent Shannons auction.

R34s, much-lauded by the younger PlayStation generation, are enjoying dizzying heights on the collector market, often fetching prices doubling that of its older siblings. What was once a $40,000 car has well and truly blown out beyond the attainable performance coupe of yesteryear. Bespoke Motors state that you’ll need a minimum of $80,000-$90,000 to play in this market, and that’s for a “base” GT-R.

After a more performance honed V-Spec or V-Spec II? Or the even rarer leather and luxuries of an M-Spec? Or a limited edition “Nur” (Nurburgring) edition? Prepare to jot down plenty of numbers, six-figures deep, on your cheque!

But, the R34 arguably carries its inflated price tag with merit. On paper, the GT-R only got better with each iteration, its technical tour de force ethos best manifesting itself in what many deem the last of the true and analogue Godzillas.

First born in 1999, the R34 GT-R takes on many of the same technological features that made the earlier GT-Rs famous – a dynamic ATTESA four-wheel drive system, Super-HICAS rear-wheel steering and the same heroic architecture from its cult 2.6lt twin-turbo RB26DETT in-line-six engine.

Power had seemingly not increased much through the generations as Nissan claimed the R34 GTR made 206kW. This is believed to be part of a handshake deal between Japanese manufacturers at the time. The ‘official’ figure is widely dismissed; the true figure is believed to be significantly higher. It certainly feels more than that.

There’s no lag in the new – for this generation – factory ball-bearing ceramic turbos, giving it a snappier and more linear throttle-response closely akin to that of a naturally aspirated engine.

Also new for the R34 was a slick Getrag six-speed gearbox, allowing for closer-ratios lowdown and easier cruising in top gear converse to the older R32 and R33’s five-speed box.

This neat R34 GT-R is available at Bespoke Motors in Bayswater, outer-east Melbourne and presents well in iconic Bayside Blue hue. It is largely factory fresh and is listed for $94,980.

Unfortunately for those of us who remember a different time, this is the reality of today’s market; and we can comfortably say these cars have well and truly reached hero status.