Leo's Austrian Nissan Skyline R32 GTR Fast but Still Street Legal

Honda Integra DC2 Turbo
Honda Integra DC2 - Turbo
Since I was 14, I was a fan of Japanese sports cars and thanks to Gran Turismo, I got to know the GTR. A few years later, I saw my first BNR32 in flesh during a holiday in Italy (actually the car was from the UK). For me the GTR has always been the ultimate Japanese sports car and a kind of unicorn and it was my biggest dream of owning one someday...

…2009 was finally the year were I decided to sell my old DC2 Turbo (here you’ll find some pics and videos if someone is interested: DC2 Turbo Austria) and to go for my dream.

After a few months of searching for the perfect car and for a good importer, I came across the GTR.co.uk forum, and from most of the people there, I was highly recommended to contact Matty and Miguel from Newera Japan. Their reputation along the forum was really great so I thought I’ll give them a try.


Some E-mails later and after telling Miguel exactly what I was looking for, it didn’t took very long until I got the first proposal from him. From then on things got rolling.

May 14th 2009... Miguel won the auction
Miguel sent me an E-mail with the link to the “for sale” thread of this car and also told me something about its mods. The car got lots of Nismo bits, including the intercooler, limited edition Nismo LMs, HKS complete exhaust, HKS oil cooler, Öhlins competition coilover, lots of Defi gauges, and Abflug bodywork including a CF front splitter and a CF rear diffuser, etc…


Miguel told me that initially he bought the car for another customer, but he still hasn’t payed the GBP 1000.- deposit. He told me about this car as I was looking for a white BNR32 (love them in white) which was almost stock as else I wouldn’t be able to get it registered here in Austria due to our regulations. Luckily I sent Newera the deposit right after asking them to source me a car, so I had the first dibs on it.



After a sleepless night of thinking, it was clear to me that I didn’t get the car out of my mind, so I asked Miguel to send me some more pics.


May 16th 2009... Another sleepless night
After another sleepless night I decided to buy the car. The spec was great the price was fair and the car was almost exactly what I’m looking for. Immediately I contacted Miguel to tell him the good news. You can’t imagine how excited I was, that finally my dream would come true.

May 22nd 2009... the shipping yard
I really loved the specs of the car, but wasn’t really sure about the bodywork. On the one hand it was a genuine Abflug car, but on the other hand, what’s my advantage of owning an Abflug car when you’re not sure about the looks. So it was pretty clear to me that the side skirts, the rear spats and the R34 rear wing had to go.
White Nissan Skyline Skirt Body Kit

White Nissan Skyline Bumper Body Kit
The R34 wing didn’t look to bad, but in my opinion, the only wing to be mounted on the boot is that of an R32.
After some searching the web, which alternatives were available for the side skirts or perhaps a complete bodykit (thought about the Trust kit for a while), I came along Bee*R and decided for their side skirts with the CF lining, as I was sure it will look awesome along the line of the CF front splitter and the CF rear diffuser.

June 30th 2009... All Aboard!
Miguel sent me the final pics before my car went on the vessel, I also let them install some other CF bits like the intercooler surround and a Garage Defend cooling panel, a Nismo 320kph dash, a R35 GTR badge and a LED reverse and fog light kit which is obligatory if you want to get the car registered here.
Fresh R35 GTR Badge

White Nissan Skyline Bee*R Side Skirts
Bee*R side Skirts

Nismo Carbon Fiber Intercooler Air Guide
Carbon Fiber Intercooler Air Guide


LED Reverse Lights
LED Reverse Lights

Obligatory Red LED Fog light

Nismo 320 kp/hr Speedometer
August 26th 2009... The Eagle has Landed 
After two nervous months of waiting my car was finally here. I just had to wait until it cleared customs so I could pick it up. The next 4 days felt like 4 months to me.

August 30th 2009... Finally!
I picked up my first BNR32 at the port in Bremerhaven Germany. This was probably the luckiest day of my life. I was about to finally pick up MY dream car.

The port
Luckily the car arrived without any noteworthy damage, as Miguel has removed the front splitter and raised the front of the car so there was enough ground clearance for up and unloading from the Vessel.
Then I just need to put on the German temporary plates and we were on the way back home to Austria.
Installing Temp. Plates
The car was in absolutely top condition, without any noteworthy rust or wear and technically absolute flawless and I was more than satisfied with it. I drove it home, all the 1000km back to Linz Austria, without any incident. No leaking, no smoke, no oil pressure problems nothing. It's just like new.
I have to thank Miguel and Matty from Newera Imports who sourced me this wonderful GTR and made my biggest dream come true. Thank you! 
These guys are really top notch and I'd buy the cars they source again and again as they are of highest quality! To be honest, I was a little scared at the beginning, as you buy a cat in the bag and there are ways to make a crappy car look good on a photo, apart from that you pay a lot of money to someone you didn't know and who lives in a country far away, but I favored them and I haven't regret it. 
I wrote a hell lot of E-mails with Miguel and Matty and they honestly answered all my questions, kept me informed about how things were working out on my car and they went into all my wishes and made them possible.
Even now after I got the car, they stay in contact with me and provide any help if needed. And that's what I really appreciateSo if somebody is reading this and is on the lookout for a top quality Jap import, I can just advise to contact Newera Imports and I promise you won't regret.
August 31st 2009... Back in Austria 
As the weather was fine here I decided to give my new toy a good clean and enjoy it for the time the temporary plates were valid.


Nismo Skyline GTR Carbon Fiber Lip




Then, unfortunately the real trouble began. I found out that it was far more complicated to get this car registered here in Austria than I have thought. It took me quite a while until I got the right connections to a guy, which would give me a TÜV approval for my car so I could register it.


October 27th 2009... PS Show Wels 
Still trying to find someone to give my car a TÜV approval, two friends of mine asked me if I’d like to attend a local car show with my GTR along with their NSX’s. I thought “why not, this could be fun”. This was our stand.


Car Show White Nissan Skyline GTR


Car Show White Nismo GTR


November 11th 2009... Day of approval 


Today was the big day where my car should get its TÜV approval. After months of searching for someone to do the job, I finally found the right person at the TÜV Süd in Innsbruck Tirol.
We put the car on a trailer early in the morning and went down to Innsbruck. After about three hours of inspection and testing, I finally got the approval and received my new “Einzelgenehmigungsbescheid”. Now I “only” needed to pay those silly carbon taxes (which were almost € 4000.-) and then I could finally register it.
Just as a side mark, my BNR32 was the first BNR32 in Austria which got TÜV approval and it is the only one until now which is road registered on Austrian plates (as far as I know).

November 27th 2009... Day of registration
All taxes were paid now, everything approved and tested so there was nothing left to get in the way of the registration.
It got already pretty cold outside, but I wanted to enjoy my car one last time, and especially on my plates, before putting it back into my Garage for its winter sleep. Also trial fitted a genuine Mine’s wing which I bought in the meantime (the good thing was that it used the same holes as the OEM wing, so I didn’t need to drill new holes and I could swap between those two as often as I like).


March 1, 2010... Work started on my GTR
 
After collecting some new parts during the winter, I finally started to work on my GTR.
First parts went out

Next step was to completely remove the HICAS system.
I decided to loop the HICAS line from the PS pump at the front to keep the PS fluid cooler.


After collecting some new parts during the winter, I finally started to work on my GTR.
First parts went out


Removed all solenoids, hoses and the lines which are running under the car (now I also have access to the oil filter. First parts went out

Everything that went out (lines from under the car are not on the picture).


And that's what went back in again, my new HICAS lock out bar.
HKS EVC-S gets installed
I removed all unnecessary hoses from under the plenum which were running to the stock PCM valve. During the installation I also changed my fuel filter just to be sure. I mounted the boost solenoid on the plenum to keep lines as short as possible.
I cut off the stock boost pipe which is leading to the turbos to connect it with the HKS solenoid.
Next was the interior installation and the wiring (at that time I wasn't sure where to mount the display).
I also decided to fit some Aerocatch bonnet fasteners to my stock hood.

Unfortunately when the bolts get mounted in the usual way they were a bit too long so I had to custom fit them. I used the washers and rubber parts you get with the kit as spacer and secured them with two nuts each from the underside.
Work was a little tricky as cutting an alloy hood isn't that easy than cutting a FRP or CF hood, but I pretty satisfied with the outcome.



AC Removal
Next step was to remove some more weight from the front, so out with the AC.
This was one of the easiest jobs until now, as the whole removal is pretty straight forward. Pump, radiator, fan, lines, everything went out.


Far more space now...

I also removed the heat exchanger which was hiding in a box behind the glove box. Now I just need to get some suitable grommets to seal the holes to the engine bay where the lines went out.

Battery Relocation

I got myself a SARD kit as I wanted to move the battery to the trunk for a better weight distribution.
I would have preferred to mount the kit somewhere in the middle, but for now it's okay in the place it's mounted.
I attached the fuse holder to the side of the battery box and used a 200A fuse to secure the system.

The installation of the box in this position was quite simple. I just had to use a 90mm threaded rod on one of the holes, as this one went straight through the rear frame.
That's where the cable is running into the interior.
And that's where the cable is running out into the engine bay.
And here's where everything is coming together. You can already see where the new relays get placed which are switching my new electric fans (the fans are then controlled from my Haltech ECU).

Brakes Refurbed
I disassembled all my calipers cleaned them up and replaced the piston sealings and the dust caps. Then after cleaning my brake discs I put on some new Nismo S-Tune brake pads and additionally added some Nismo braided brake hoses (this setup will have to last until I can buy a new AP big brake setup for front and rear). Afterwards I exchanged the standard brake fluid against a Motul DOT 5.1 brake fluid.


Wiring the interior
pulled in a permanent plus along with the two cables for the control voltage of the new fan relays
I also attached another cable to the ignition to get a separate switched plus. Both plus lines will be connected to two ledges (one for each) that I'll put into the glove box. On each ledge I have eight fused exits, this way I can connect every additional instrument (EVC, TSC, ...) on a separate and fused circuit, either switched or permanent.
TSC Evo Installed
My new torque split controller, already fitted
Nismo thermostat, N1 water pump, HKS timing belt


Next on the plan was to change my thermostat, water pump, timing belt,...
So out with the old and in with the new
I installed a Nismo low temp thermostat, a N1 water pump, new tensioner and idle pulley and a HKS timing belt. Due to a recent thread concerning the tension of such a Kevlar belt, I decided to keep the tension a little more loose than the standard timing belt was so it hopefully won't start whining.

ATI Crank Damper
I installed my new ATI street crank damper that hopefully will protect my oil pump from breaking
Here comes my new shiny HKS Kansai tow hook (and it's orange, as on every picture it looked red...).

CF Naca duct 
The last two days were quite busy.
At first I finished on my bonnet and installed the CF Naca Duct

Carbon fiber hood NACA Duct

DashDAQ XL

Then I continued on the interior.
My center console is now finished and my new DashDAQ XL installed
Unfortunately there's still a lot of wiring left...
Repainted my front bumper reinforcement bar in flat black.
And removed the rear wiper and the washer nozzle.
Already started to put my engine bay back together.
Just my HKS sandwich plate is still not back in place as I'm still waiting for my new oil pressure sensor...
Next part on my to do list was to modify the IC mounting so I could move it a little backwards to get more clearance to the bumper.

Also did a little modification on my front bumper. Now the CF surround fits perfect without any gaps and enough clearance to the IC. Also installed some black expanded metal to prevent my IC from getting damaged through stones.
Interior now finished

My new Trial Sports CF door steps
My new Bride Cuga HL seats
Bride Racing Seat

My additional fuse box in the glove box is now finished too. The upper ledge is for permanent plus and the lower one for switched plus.
Some wiring harnesses left until the Haltech and the Zeitronix ZT-2 is installed.
And some more interior shots.


April 4, 2010... Finally putting all back together
Yesterday was the big day/night! My GTR is now finished to 95% and you can actually call it a car again. As I completely removed all the standard bov's and recirculation stuff, I used a Samco 45° elbow to delete the standard elbow with the bov flange.

Instead of the standard bov's I'm using this HKS bov now. I already wired up my new electrical fans too, which will be put in as soon as the Haltech is installed.
And that's how it looks at the moment with my new N1 lights.

The front and rear Abflug diffuser will be fitted as soon as I got my wheels aligned next week.
Work to do now:

  • Adjust the GF cooling panel to the N1 lights (they seem to be a little different)
  • MOT + full alignment
  • Install decat pipe, wide band lambda and EGT sensor
  • Install my Haltech ECU and the Zeitronix ZT-2 controller
  • Mapping
Later that day I tried to restart my GTR for the first time after the winter.
I turned the ignition key and the car fired up right away
After a warm up I took it for a little test run. Man it feels so good to drive it again.
Now all the work of the last months has finally paid off.
Can't wait to install my Haltech and to get it mapped to see what my little baby can do J

April 19, 2010... 99% finished 
After passing the MOT and getting my wheels aligned on friday I took her for a nice long ride before I took her back to my garage. One word, AWESOME.
Now I know why I was working so hard the last month's to get my GTR finished.
I just need to do some minor cosmetic changes (and yes I'm really finicky) and get it mapped.
So here are the last things that have changed:

Removed the MAF's and the foam filters for some nice Apexi ones...
... got my electric fans installed, changed my spark plugs for Denso Iridium IQ24 and installed my splitfire coil packs...
... installed my Nismo FPR and my Nismo fuel pump (next time I know it will be better the tank is almost empty and not almost full)
... and installed my big bore decat pipe with the wide bad lambda sensor and my EGT sensor (and please guys, I know that the EGT mounted in this position doesn't provide utilizable readings, but it will be moved to the correct place as soon as I can buy new turbos, elbows and exhaust manifolds).
Decat test pipe O2 Sensors
And that's how my GTR looks right now with all diffusers attached and the HKS tow hook mounted.

A short update on my mapping day on Friday:

After a few minor problems at the start car was driving fine. We drove around for about 2 hours to map the car in part load operational range. Then we wanted to map the car on full load, as we realized a problem. He wasn't able to keep the boost level stable...
... after various testings we were sure it only could be knackered actuators.
I already ordered some new HKS strengthened actuators from Newera and hope to get them soon. Unfortunately I already had to cancel my first track day on 1st of May

Mai 3, 2010... Got my new HKS actuators
Thanks to Miguel, I got my new HKS strengthened actuators last Thursday.
I also got my Samco hoses and the better hose clamps in the meantime so I could finish my induction.
Now I'm just waiting to get my painted valve covers by the end of the week and then my engine bay is finished for this season.Wednesday is mapping day, On that day, unfortunately we had to realize that the unstable boost was not due to the actuators (tested my standard ones in the meantime and they were just fine), it was due to the HKS EVC, which wasn’t reacting as fast as it should.
As a consequence I removed the HKS EVC again and connected the boost solenoid to my Haltech ECU. Problem solved

Mai 5, 2010... Final mapping
Thanks a lot to my friend Peter for taking some pics for me (as I forgot my cam at home like usually). 



Nissan Skyline Dyno Tune



Nissan Dyno Nistune


Mai 25, 2010... 100% finished
My engine bay now finished for this season
White Cam Covers Valve Nissan Engine

Powder Coat Nissan Engine Head
And I finally got rid of my orange side markers. Thanks a lot to Miguel and Newera for sourcing me these nice smoked side markers at a fabulous price. 



September 6, 2010... The ending of a successful first season 
I enjoyed my GTR a lot this year and did about 6000 km's without any problems. After my first season in the car, I can hardly describe what I'm thinking about it...  ...what a car!!!

Due to the silly weather in Austria and getting colder each day, I decided that it's time for my GTR's winter sleep. Already started to take her apart again so new updates are coming soon in part two of my build thread. Some final pics of my GTR, my mates S13 and my other mates NSX from the last meet for this year:









Honda Acura NSX Silver