To tie-in with the launch of the soon-to-be-released Gran Turismo Sport for PS4, Nissan and a company called JLB Design have converted a Nissan GT-R to be controlled by a DualShock 4 controller rather than the normal steering wheel and pedals.
The GT-R is now completely remote-controlled GT-R - and aptly renamed the GT-R/C - as demonstrated by Nissan racing driver Jann Mardenborough, who drove the car around the Silverstone racing circuit from the passenger seat of a helicopter circling above.
As you might imagine, the modifications were quite extensive. A RaceLogic VBOX system sent Mardenborough telemetry in the helicopter. Six computers in the trunk translated inputs from the PS4 controller and actuated the GT-R/C's steering, brakes, throttle, and transmission. And a pair of redundant safety systems were installed, allowing two different operators the ability to apply full brakes and cut the engine in the event of Mardenborough losing control of the GT-R/C.
The choice of Mardenborough as the driver was an obvious one, as he was one of the first winners of the Nissan Playstation GT Academy, a competition that's been turning gamers into professional racing drivers since 2008. He sounded rather enthused after setting a fastest lap of 1:17.47 around Silverstone's 2.6km National Circuit:
"This was once-in-a-lifetime, truly epic stuff," Mardenborough said. "The GT-R /C has brought my two worlds together—the virtual of gaming and the reality of motorsport—in a way I never thought possible. The response from the car when using the controller was far more engaging than I thought it would be. JLB Design has done an incredible job at making everything respond really well. Steering, acceleration and braking were all intelligently configured, allowing for controlled application so I could really get a feel through the corners and hold it steady down the fast straights. Driving a full-size, remote-control GT-R to 211kph at Silverstone whilst chasing it down in a helicopter was an unforgettable experience."