Remembering the Nissan Skyline 2.8 GTX

There are some old cars out there that do not really draw a lot of attention to themselves, and then there are cars like the 1986 Nissan Skyline 2.8 GTX (R30). Its visible from miles away, and despite its age, still looks as good as it did back then.

It is one of those old gems who every so often makes a boy racer run home and cry to his daddy, because his new age factory pocket rocket was humiliated by grandpa, and by a few car lengths just to add salt to the wounds.

It is long, flat, not particularly rounded, and indicates serious business with the bulge on its bonnet. This Nissan makes a sound second to none all while effortlessly breaking your neck with its scary performance. The rear also one of the most memorable designs ever with the circular tail lights. A mark that the top Nissans still carry to this day

Skyline side Profile

Looking at its figures on paper it does leave a big question mark. Boasting with a modest  105kw @ 5000 rpm and 209nm torque @ 3000 rpm, some figures don’t add up when you consider how fast it actually was.

At standard spec it featured no turbo or multivalve system. In fact it was a simple 2 valves per cylinder setup. Running a SOHC, 2.8l straight 6 power plant via a five speed gearbox to the rear wheels, the claimed top speed was 192 km/h.

Very little technical information is available for me to do some thorough research, but It was a performance car, without hindrance from any electronic gizmo’s. It was built to drive, slow or fast, uphill or down, while at the same time not shaking your innards to such an extend that could be fed to a lion as a smoothie.


Its mechanical nature meant it spoke to you.  You’d know what the wheels are doing, how far from the edge you are, and how close to heaven your’e flying to. It’s comfortable, and forgiving. I would much rather take this out on a track than the insane Perana Capri. Mostly because I believe I’ll have more fun, but also because I love this car.

It’s a dramatic showpiece of engineering, pioneering innovation, and everything done right. If you ever spot one pulling away from a stop sign at speed, just look at how the back drops. It’s pure, unadulterated magic. It is car porn!

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Juan Loubser

I am an old fashioned 30 year balding, ham fisted egghead, with a love for mechanical engineering, Victorian era architecture. There was always something about cars, and up to this day I cannot put my finger on it, the easiest way to explain it would be to like it to something you just understand, you get it, you don’t know why or how, but it’s something you've understood all your life. With Torquesteer I have created a couple of Goals. One is to tour the little market town of Todmorden, England in a MG B roadster, and the Second is to do the US route 66 in true american muscle style. Driving a Tesla is also on the list.

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