of Origin: Japan
Host: GT4 & GT5
Price: Nil (GT4 Prize), $13,412 (GT5 used car lot)
24.1 (GT4), 54,557.5 (GT5)
Construction: unit steel
Length: 166.73" // Width: 59.5" // Height: 55.3"
Overhang: 5' 5"
Track: 49.8" [F] 49.4" [R]
Weight: 2,413 pounds
Front Engine / Rear-drive
F. Suspension: M. struts, coils, lwr. wishbones, anti-roll bar
semi-elliptical arms, coils, shox
*GT4 GT-B was not given any maintenance, its power close
* GT5 GT-B was given oil change but no engine rebuild
Engine: 2.0 liter DOHC inline-6
Fuel System: 3 dual-brl.
Valves / Cyl: 2
Bore x Stroke: 3.23 x 2.44"
Final HP: 123 @ 5,600 124
@ 5,500 rpm
Fnl Torq: 122.89 @ 4,400 126 @ 4,500 rpm
Credits per HP: NA
Pounds per HP: 19,62
Pounds per Trq: 19.62
HP per Liter: 61.9
Idle Speed (4 or 5): 750 // Redline: 6,500 // RPM Limit: 7,000
Transmission: 5-speed manual
0-60 mph: 10.933 seconds 10.450
0-100 mph: 31.xxx
400 M: 18.316 @ 79 mph
18.511 @ 80 mph
1 Kilom: 32.921 @ 102 25.954 @ 103
Mile: Nil 18.804 (mph n/a)
45.652 @ 112 mph
100-zero mph: No Test 6.233 seconds
Gear RPM @ 60 mph: 3,250
Top Speed at Redline (GT5):
1st: 28.8 mph
2nd: 49.3 mph
4th: 91.1 mph
5th: 122.3 @ 6,750 rpm
123.02 @ 6,900 rpm (GT4)
----------EXTERIOR / HISTORY------------
So begins Part II of the story of the infamous Skyline. Part I started with the '62 Prince Skyline
Sport Coupe, now we move on to the Skyline's second generation.
Although the '62 Prince Skyline is the oldest to appear
in Gran Turismo 4 and 5, it is not considered a suitable race car, not by me anyways. As I drove it a few days ago, I
found it to be more of a novelty, more of a cruiser. Kinda neat to drive around, imagining I'm a Japanese hipster in
the early '60s or whatever. It can win some races (don't get me wrong, here) but the '62 simply was not bred for the tracks,
you see? It's a great car to view in replays, mostly because it's so unusual to watch as it sashes about. But let's
not fool ourselves.
This began to change with the Skyline's second generation. Here's where it all began.
in 1963, Prince released their 2nd generation of Skyline, codenamed the S50. It could be had either as a wagon or a sedan,
and took on a boxier, less handsome appearance in comparison to the Skyline's first generation. The amount of chrome used
to decorate the S50 looks as if it were cut roughly in half, when compared to the '62 Skyline Sport Coupe, and the S50 took
on a more "generic" demeanor, similar to many other sedans produced all over the world.
But if you look closely, there
are some items of interest. This newer Skyline kept the Sport Coupe's quad headlamps, for instance. It also added a feature
to be found on many later Skylines: circular tail-lamps. And, there are other minor details to be noted here and there, details
which some potential buyers might find attractive, ugly, or perhaps they won't be noticed much at all. This generation of Skyline
was not trying to be an Italian art form, nor was it trying to be anything at all, other than functional, simple, and possibly
an even better seller than the previous generation. Simplified designs from the '50s to the '60s didn't just happen in America,
it's interesting to see they took place in Japan as well.
From 1963 to 1968, 114,238 S50s
were sold, which was great, but the story is not as simple as this.
In 1966, Prince and Nissan merged. This happend
due to a strategy suggested by Japan's government. They theorized: A company which merged with another company would
create a greater amount of resources, factory space, and dealership networks for both manufacturers after they combined.
Overall, this meant there would be a greater chance for success and longevity on a worldwide scale. Prince was still
relatively new at car-making in the mid 60s, wheras Nissan had a much longer reputation. Nissan's roots began before World
War I, long before Nissan was actually known as "Nissan", with the DAT motorcar.
It's possible Nissan needed Prince
at that point, partialy because Prince's models were somewhat on the higher end of the luxury scale. Matter of fact,
at some point Prince was commissioned to produce a few specialized vehicles for Japan's royalty during the 1960s.
Toyota, Honda, Daihatsu, and a few others gaining sales, the Nissan/Prince merger only made both companies stronger. But
that's not the only reason for the merge. Prince had just begun racing a couple years earlier, and had some interesting
During the early '60s, Japanese touring car racing often featured larger autos like Toyota's Crown,
Nissan's Cedric, and Prince's Gloria. Nowadays, the Skyline would be considered "compact", but back then the S50 was more
of a mid-size, while the Crown, Cedric, and Gloria were full-sized. Part of the Skyline's success, therefore, was due to the
fact that it was smaller and nimbler than the typically larger autos to be found in TC racing. The Skyline was probably
easier to drive, as well.
The larger cars mentioned had larger 6-cylinder engines, wheras the first generation
Skyline featured a slightly smaller 4. Part of Prince's strategy was to drop the Gloria's 2.0 liter straight 6 engine
into the S50-generation car. Not only was this engine a little bigger, it had already been prepared for racing. Now,
the new Skyline had the handling and the speed necessary for winning, Prince only had to lengthen the car's front-end
to fit the larger engine. See...it wasn't just America that was messing around with larger engine displacements in an effort
for more glory.
In 1964, Prince entered several Skyline 2000GTs into the Japanese Grand
Prix at Suzuka. According to a couple websites I visited, Prince actually dominated the race early on. Despite the fact that
these boxy sedans were not heavily modified from their street versions, Skylines took 2nd thru 6th place, while a single private-entry
Porsche 904 won the race. After this particular race, one of Prince's executives decided to create the R380, a purer
mid-engined race car. But let's try not to get off-topic here.
Certainly, this race at Suzuka was
where the Skyline's long long reputation in sports competition was really first noticed on a global scale. The 904
was a fiberglass-bodied rear-engine sports car. It was low, lightweight and sleek, and featured a flat-4 twincam
engine which of course had seen racing experience all over the world. Despite this, it was pretty cool that it could
have been trounced by a bunch of new-model sedans, had there been some sort of driver error or mechanical failures. If the
Skyline was capable of taking down an actual European sports car, what else could be possible?
America we had higher-performing versions of our muscle cars to appease street-terrorizing buyers, and in Japan
the marketing formula was no different. Prince started to offer a couple higher-performing Skyline GTs to the public: the
GT-A and the GT-B. The GT-A had a single carburetor for its 1,988 cc inline-6 producing
104 hp. The GT-B, on the other hand had three dual-barrel Weber carbs, producing about 126. We,
of course, are lucky to have access to the GT-B, not the weaker GT-A.
the merger between Prince and Nissan dissolved the Prince Motors name. Although Prince still operates within Nissan (creating
their Skylines) there are no more official Prince cars, not that I know of anyways. Such a shame. But the good news
is, after 1966 with the Skyline now known as a Nissan, its reputation only grew. Who knows, if that merger hadn't happened,
and Prince at some point had faltered, we might not have had any Skylines in Gran Turismo at all. Some don't
consider this a bad thing, I suppose.
At just over 2,400 pounds, the GT-B is light and devilishly nimble at times.
It may not have been much of a looker, but this generation of Skyline (firmly under Nissan's influence) only showed
improvements all-around. The GT-B is oddly hard to attain in either game being reviewed: in GT4 it appears in Nissan's "Classic"
lot, but cannot be bought, it can only be won as a prize. The GT5 car can be found in this game's used car lot, but good
luck actually finding one. Once you do find one, the good news is that (unlike a lot of other classics) you won't need to
drop a lot of cash.
--------ENGINE / DRIVETRAIN----------
As mentioned, the 2000 GT-B's engine was taken from the Prince Gloria, a move which helped Prince (and
eventually Nissan) with some stunning success. But to many of us gamers, it's a bit of a stretch to imagine how this could
have happened. Nowadays we're all used to Skyline engines rated at 276 (under Japan's '90s-era power restrictions) but
these engines often contain more than 276 once we dyno them in our own garages. Early Skylines put forth nowhere near these
sort of numbers!
My used 2000 GT-B had just over 54,000 miles when I bought it in GT5. Before oil
change, yikes...it only had 115 hp @ 5,500 rpm, with 114 foot-pound of torque @ 4,500. Both
of these figures gained about 10 of each (124 hp and 126 foot-pounds) after oil change was managed. The GT4 car (as
a prize) starts 123 horses, which is exactly the amount quoted by Nissan. Our redline in either game starts at 6,500,
which is sometimes where some more modern Skylines begin their peak power area!
Still, despite the fact that the
G7 engine is much less powerful, after gazing at its dyno results it's obvious what sort of engine this is. It is tepid,
yes, but it is also somewhat peaky. Peak torque and power are close in range to one another, meaning that revs mustn't
wander too far south in the wrong gear. Nor do we always need to reach far into the redline area itself to gain that last
bit of power.
Nissan (Nismo, whatever) provides some nice power upgrades. I've driven this car as it appears
in GT4, where it unfortunately makes just over 200 hp, max. All 3 NA kits can be had, but only two turbos. We can do a lot
of racing though, despite these low numbers, including this game's coveted 1,000 Miles! marathons. In GT5, things improve:
all three turbo systems can be had on top of the usual "Big 3" engine upgrades. At most, we've got 199 @ 6,400
with 170 foot-pounds @ 5,400 with peak natural power, and 237 @ 6,400 with 196 @
5,900 with a Stage 3 turbo system. Since this game does not require much power in its early stages, the Skyline
2000 GT-B can safely compete in the Japanese Classics, World Historic Cup, FR Challenge, and Clubman Cup without much overkill
Finally, some notes on drivetrain. The GT-B came with a 5-speed manual
transmission and limited-slip differential, both standard equipment. The limited-slip does seem to have been considered, especially
in GT5. I'm noticing it seems to augment this car's traction and handling out of turns. Let's discuss handling, actually.
----------CHASSIS / HANDLING-----------
for a bit of fun. It's like Christmas morning, GT4 is, and there are....like...over 800 presents for us to open. The
night before Christmas, many of us can't sleep, as we toss and turn in anticipation.
Anyways, 800 is a lot
of presents, so that it can take several years to open them all, and in some cases, many of these gifts remain in
their wrappings. There's just so many of them! And of course, we don't just unwrap these presents, we usually start playing
with these toys soon after they're unwrapped, leaving hundreds of other presents waiting under the tree.
some cases, the presents we find are just as our dreams warranted, in other cases we are less than impressed. This particular
present looks unimpressive at first. It's a rather droll-looking vehicle; almost as boxy as the box it came in. Even
as an historic vehicle, this one doesn't make us go "wow" like some other classics, including the first-generation Skyline
with its cat-eye face and hand-built Italian-designed bodywork. Matter fact, there's nothing really "classic" about this one
at all: this 1967 Skyline 2000 GT-B. It's rather a bit ordinary.
But, we smile anyways. We say "thanks" to Nissan,
while pretending to be excited. Secretly, we might be disappointed. We might just want to quietly take this one back to the
store for an exchange, right? Where's that damn receipt!
Basically: it doesn't look as though this boxmobile
will do well at the tracks of Gran Turismo. Sure, it almost managed to defeat a Porsche, and held many touring car victories
in its day, but that "day" was almost 50 years ago.
Taking a drive at most any track, some of us may start to
feel a bit depressed, as this one crawls its way around. The GT-B is slow, it is nothing like a modern Skyline. Each upshift
has us fearing faster cars will overtake. Yet, as we start to take some turns, eventually we may start to see this
car does have its merits, especially in those twisty bit where we can get more and more confident tossing this one
Matter of fact, the Skyline's reputation for solid, predictable handling didn't begin in the 1990s, or even the
'70s. It's notable how even in this ancient antique, handling can be quite exemplary at times, especially
compared to others of its day. But even when faced against a more modern crowd during the FR Challenge, PD Cup, and various
Special Condition races, this old clunker can sometimes step up to the plate with confidence.
Driver skill comes
into play, of course. Since we can't always rely on power, we must be able to drive the this Skyline for all its worth in
those turns. Fortunately, this car often does work with us at these times.
Despite the GT-B's tall, thin,
boxy shape, and its narrow tires, handling is where this one excells at. Not just handling...predictable
handling. This car is 100% predictable, unlike many many other historic automobiles. There is understeer but it's usually
light. And since this Skyline happens to be so narrow (59.5" wide), it's often eager to find areas to get by larger cars on
those circuits. Use this space wisely! Again, the GT-B only works WITH us as we get by others.
And of course, this
is GT4, so the main thing that sucks about this car's handling is its lack of fun. Other than the fact that it's somewhat
tossable, the GT-B as it appears in this game isn't much fun. I'm talking of sliding, oversteer, and drifting, to which we
can answer with a "sometimes", "No", and "NEVER". Maybe some pro drifter drivers might be able to get this one going on some
cheapie tires, I personally haven't had much luck in these departments.
But what did we expect? Christmas isn't
just about presents and getting, it's also about providing for others and giving. And that's just where GT5 fits in...
slightly more experienced driver is needed to pilot the S50 around in GT5, especially if ABS braking is not being used, but
there's more of a reward system in effect for those drivers who are willing and able to take the time to get to know this
car's mannerisms as it appears in the "Next Gen" game.
One of the main differences from GT4 to GT5 is now
this car isn't 100% predictable anymore. But it's still anywhere from 80 to 90% so, depending on tires, power-ratings, and
such. The loss of predictability is okay, though, for what we have now is a little more excitement in its
That's one thing I love about this car in this game. It still tackles turns like it did
in the previous edition, yet if you push it a bit more, there's a feeling of responsiveness that's missing
in GT4. There's more of a playful behavior now. This is true in lots of cars with more "go", it's nice to see it's also
true in a car which hasn't got mountains of torque and power.
As expected, the GT-B is now prone to
more oversteer in this newer game, yet even this extra rear-end slipping is predictable most of the time. It's
easier to get slipping, or even get sideways if that's your aim, and it's just as easy to recall any of this recalcitrance
back. Yet on top of it all, the front-end still has that solid, predictable safeness with just a bit of understeer. The
front-end is always ready to take our commands, and provides accurate steering into many turns of all kinds.
of this is true with the 2000 GT-B's stock Comfort Soft tires, and only gets better and better with sports. At times,
you may forget you're racing a nearly 50-year old 4-door sedan. No wonder the 2000 GT-B managed to compete with that
Porsche so long ago.
Even understeer in this car is easy to manage! This is one of those rare
cars in which I'm finding I can sometimes just let it push towards the outside, especially in larger turns with no
traffic to contend with. This Skyline won't just take a bee-line towards those walls; instead, it can safely be tossed into
turns, losing small amounts of front-end grip, yet I can sometimes start with that gas early anyways. There's still a
push, but there's not much car being pushed. Once you get the hang of it, those outside tires can safely land
just at the edge of a curb, instead of in the grass, again and again and again.
Basically, in how
many cars of Gran Turismo can we say these words as we watch their replays: "wow, I was understeering when
I skooled that BMW!"
Braking is the main area which must be managed a
little more (sometimes a lot more) carefully and thoroughly. With a lack of ABS, the Skyline 2000 GT-B needs longer
distances and more careful entry into turns at times. It's not really understeer that winds up being a concern, it's small
amounts of brake lock-up and sliding. Usually, the rear will start to slide outwards if brakes and too
much steering are both applied, which can be dangerous in this car mostly because any deviance from its usual safe, predictable
mannerisms can possibly mean lost time. And lost time = lost speed.
Then again, for some of us, this only ADDS to the
fun! Getting this car a little sideways into turns can actually be a great tool mid-turn, where steering orbits can
be played with once those brakes are off. It's great watching replays of this sleeper do its thing at these times.
as power gets raised to 200 horses and beyond do we start to see some more serious issues like excessive wheelspin showing
up. The 2000 GT-B gets more and more nervous; the gas pedal must be managed more and more carefully. This includes sport
tires as well as bias-plys. A limited-slip can be employed, but the trunk area still has a tendency to dance sideways if too
much power is cast to those rear tires.
Basically, before limited slip = more wheelspin from one tire. After limited
slip, there isn't as much overall wheelspin, but the rear can start to slip about anyways.
high marks here, and we get an early glimpse at why the prettily-named Skyline eventually became the track dominator
we know it as today.
1). It's the Skyline which really started
it all at the tracks, in a way. Driving and racing it around, we begin to possiby see why.
2). One of the best-handling
cars of the 1960s, period. This Skyline blows away many of our "muscle cars", and even some smaller autos, in the handling
& maneuverability department, despite being a boxy sedan.
3). Stock limited-slip keeps the traction manageable,
even as the Skyline nears 200 horsepower on its narrow tires.
4). Somewhat lightweight.
priced, as well.
6). At 59.5" wide, it's easier to slip this one into gaps between other racers which a wider
car would not fit thru.
7). The G7 engine soundbyte sounds genuine. Revving it from low to high, there's lots of subtle
tonality differences, too.
8). 5-speed gearbox.
9). GREAT choice for some historic or compact car racing, as
this one isn't too speedy, yet has other qualities of merit.
1). Ungainly, boxy styling; a somewhat un-adventurous-looking car overall.
2). Poor straight-line acceleration.
3). "Power upgrads sux", some might whine. 237 hp at best in GT5.
4). A rather low-revving,
torqueless engine, compared to some later-edition Skylines. Again, this only will bother those drivers who understand
nothing about car-evolution, and have no respect for it.
5). GT4: Not much fun to drive this one, so far as oversteer
characteristics go. There are times that it seems this one wants to break loose here and there; yet it never quite
6). Braking can be the one area where this car lacks so far as handling goes, especially
7). Also, this lightweight can get more and more difficult over bumpy areas, as power gets raised and pounds
8). GT5: Despite its low-power and spiffy handling, this car is not for novices, as it does require
some fighting and driver input to keep it competitive at times, especially as power gets raised.
9). Too many
Skylines in Gran Turismo? Should this ancient weakling have been cut, or not included at all? You be the judge.
Published: October 30, 2011
Some GT4 Content Added: April 21, 2015