Is the Nissan Skyline 400R the ultimate family sedan from Japan?
Have you ever heard of the idea of the “one car solution”? If you haven't, it's a kind of car that should be practical, comfortable, and relatively under the radar. At the same time, it should deliver a performance that could give some sports cars a good scare. Think of it then as a family car that can satisfy the car enthusiast.
Nissan's solution is the Skyline 400R. That 400R tag should sound familiar to GT-R fanatics, as it was first, and last, used in the '90s for that era's Skyline GT-R. So, what can we expect with the modern-day Skyline 400R? For starters, it's a four-door, so you can take the family along this time around.
No, it doesn't make as much power as the R35 GT-R, but the Skyline 400R still packs a lot of punch. Its 3.0-liter V6 gets a pair of turbochargers to bump up the power to 405 PS. Maybe Nissan should have called it the 405R, but then again, it doesn't roll off the tongue as smoothly.
But before we get carried away with the name, let's take a look at more stats. Not only does this hot Skyline sedan put out over 400 PS, but it also punches out 475 Nm of torque. Sadly, a manual transmission is not available, but it does come with a seven-speed automatic transmission. But perhaps the craziest part about the Skyline 400R is how it delivers that power and torque. The Skyline 400R does not come with all-wheel drive, meaning this understated sedan can pull skids as it's rear-wheel-drive only. Of course, it's best to do that in a closed course.
If 405 PS in a rear-wheel-drive family sedan isn't enough, the folks at NISMO will even sell you a performance chip to add more power. NISMO didn't mention how much more their chip makes, but they did say that it increases the Skyline 400R's top speed.
It's not all about performance though, as the Skyline 400R can still be comfortable, says Nissan. This performance sedan uses adaptive suspension to either soak up the bumps or offer a sharper drive. Nissan also tuned the dampers to make it pliant on the road. And to be sure everyone doesn't get down from the Skyline 400R with a sore back, it even comes with Nissan's Zero Gravity seat technology. Oh, and it has 400 liters of trunk space which should be good enough for a couple of overnight bags and strollers.
Unfortunately, the Skyline 400R is reserved for the Japanese market only. Still, we think it's awesome that Nissan still makes a hot sedan, which is typically a European thing. Besides, when was the last time you heard of a mainstream Japanese manufacturer rolling out a 405 PS, rear-wheel-drive family sedan? That alone makes the 400R a car we wish we had.