A technical marvel of its time, and still one of the most sought after extreme street cars ever made, the Nissan Skyline R32 has made landfall in the US. This being courtesy of two things; the 25 year rule on emissions and crash safety, and MontuMotors. The R32 Skyline was part of the 276 HP Pact where Japanese car manufacturers agreed to limit their advertised horsepower to 276 HP. This was because the maximum speed limit in the country was 100 kph (~62 mph) and it was widely regarded that anything with more horsepower was unnecessary. So for years, up until 2005, there was a “gentleman’s agreement” that these cars would be limited to 276 HP. However, it was widely known to tuners that these cars had much more under the hood.
On August 1st, 2014, at midnight, a 1989 Nissan Skyline R32 complete with RB26DETT engine rolled up to the US/Canadian border, and became the first legal R32 in the States by way of the 25 year emissions and crash safety rating rule. After twenty five years, there is no emissions testing or crash testing required by the EPA, DOT, or NHTSA. This allows you to import cars of this age legally into the US. MontuMotors was created specifically to take advantage of this rule, and they are proud to have been able to bring the first legal R32 to the United States.
For some history and stats on the R32 Skyline, here’s a few to start. Dubbed “Godzilla” by Wheels Magazine of Australia, it started its life as a proper racer competing in JGTC championships and winning 4 in a row. It also raced in Australia in their Touring Car Championship, winning from 1990-1992, until the rules excluded it from the 1993 season. The R32 Skyline included the RB26DETT, a twin turbocharged 2.6L inline-6, with hybrid steel/ceramic turbochargers for faster spool time. It was rated at 276 HP and 266 lb*ft of torque, although the aforementioned gentleman’s agreement holds this engine in much higher regards; some estimate somewhere around 325 HP. In addition to this, the Skyline had an All Wheel Drive system named ATESSA (Advanced Total Traction Engineering System for All-Terrain) which had an electronic torque split; it functioned almost exactly like RWD except in cases of low traction on launch or cornering. This is what made it a monster on the track. It also used a 4 wheel steering system called HICAS, which was not quite as race car like. At the limit in racing, the 4 wheel steering didn’t have the solid turn in like a standard car.
MontuMotors specializes in the importation of Japanese cars abiding by the 25 year rule. If you have a car you are looking for, give their site a look. It looks to be an interesting adventure.