Nissan GT-R Makes the C8 Corvette Look Like an Economy Car in Runway Drag Race

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When the Chevrolet Corvette finally adopted a mid-engine layout, America’s sports car no longer felt like the dinosaur in a pair of white New Balance shoes trudging through the paddock. The engine was where it should have been 70 years ago, but a simple flip of the script isn’t a panacea to the two turbochargers and all-wheel-drive system found in the Nissan GT-R.

The GT-R has two advantages despite its two fewer cylinders. The turbochargers help crank the 3.8-liter V-6 engine’s output to 578 horsepower. That’s much more than the Corvette, which makes 495 hp. But the Chevy produces more torque at 470 lb-ft. The Nissan makes 466 lb-ft. Both have launch control though, evening out the start.

The GT-R also has all-wheel drive, while the Corvette only powers its rears. That AWD system adds weight though, about 500 pounds for the Nissan. A big advantage for the C8.

The GT-R showed its hand in the first race, getting off the line first and staying ahead of the Stingray through the finish. The Nissan didn’t use launch control in the second race, and the GT-R bogged down at the start. It was so slow to get off the line that the Corvette walked away from it.

The third race was the closest. Both cars got respectable starts, and the pair were even for a few seconds. However, the more potent GT-R was able to pull ahead before the finish. The Nissan completed the quarter-mile race in 10.98 seconds at 126 miles per hour. The Corvette was right on its bumper with an 11.99-second time at 119 mph.

The two might not be direct competitors in the US, but they are on more even ground in Thailand, where this test took place. Both cars cost about ฿10,650,000 (~$290,000 at today’s exchange rate). In the US, there’s a $50,000 price difference between the entry-level Corvette Stingray and the cheapest Nissan GT-R, making a comparison a bit difficult.

If both cars were the same price, which one would you have?

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