The crazy Nissan GT-R LM Nismo is this week's Lego Le Mans car!
The case of the 2015 Nissan GT-R LM Nismo, to give it its full name, is a pretty interesting one. It very famously failed to be anywhere close to competitive in the only race it ran, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. This also brought with it the abrupt end of Nissan's endurance project at large.
But you could wonder whether it actually failed at what it set out to do. When it comes down to it, there's only one reason manufacturers go racing: publicity. And, with its crazy concept of a front-engined, front-wheel drive hybrid LMP1 car, Nissan sure raked in a lot of publicity. Arguably way more than rivals Audi, Porsche and Toyota, and for a lower budget, too.
Everyone remembers it. Even people who never cared about Le Mans. Sure, not all of that may be positive -- the car was slower than most of the LMP2 field and woefully unreliable -- but I think it also showed that Nissan was one company able to think outside the box. I personally remember it fondly because of how crazy it was.
I'm also a bit disappointed it didn't get a chance to improve. At Le Mans, for the only race it got, the Nissan had to run without its hybrid system, which would have not only given more power and to the rear wheels too, but provided a helpful breaking assistance. The car was very visibly hard on its brakes; you could see incredible amounts of carbon dust behind the front wheels, thoughout the race. Well, when it was running anyway.
Who knows what it would have been capable of with a full hybrid system. I doubt it would have ever matched the Porsches -- there's a reason everyone uses the mid-engine, RWD layout -- bit it could have been way less of a catastrophic failure than it was.
I just love crazy designs. The Nissan GT-R LM was frankly ridiculous, and that's what made it so cool. It's also what made it so fun to build with Lego bricks!
As always, I'll be posting building instructions and the list of needed parts by the end of the week on this tribe. So if you want to build your own, stay tuned!