R32 GT-R V-Spec N1 is a track-prepped JDM unicorn

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As with most car enthusiasts, our morning routine consists of some time in front of the computer with a cup of coffee browsing for sale listings before getting serious about the day’s work. Some days yields little of interest, others a treasure trove. If you’re a Japanese car enthusiasts, today is one heck of a jackpot day. Particularly if you are into Nissan Skylines, since there are many flavors of GT-R, some unusual and others downright scarce. Unsure why this 1994 GT-R V-Spec N1, which recently surfaced on Bring a Trailer, provoked surprise and delight? Let us step you through the R32 geekery.

V-Spec R32s are uncommon, but an N1 is rare, with only 64 produced according to GTR-Registry.com. Beyond a low production count, this car’s mystique has everything to do with motorsport. Following the debut of the 1990 GT-R NISMO, of which Nissan built 560 to meet FIA homologation requirements, and its acceptance into motorsports, the R32 GT-R went on to become one of the dominant race cars of the early 90s. It won all 29 Japanese Touring Car Championship races it entered, captured top honors at the Australian Bathurst 1000 in 1991 and 1992, and dominated Group A until regulations forced it out of competition. And those are just the highlights.

1994 Nissan Skyline GT-R V-Spec N1 rear wing R32
Bring a Trailer/Tristan2k

The N1 derives much of its DNA from the NISMO. It boasts many of the features (or lack thereof) homologated in the NISMO, such as elements of the body kit (side skirts and trunk lip were not typically included) and deletion of the rear wiper and ABS system. However, this specification takes things a little further. GT-Rs delivered in N1 spec were stripped down even further than NISMO models in pursuit of at-limit performance. All cars were finished in a thin coat of code 326 “Crystal White” to save weight and did without air conditioning (though it could be optioned) and radio.

The twin-turbocharged, 2.6-liter inline-six, of course, is the jewel of the N1. Again, according to GTR-Registry’s research on these cars, the famous 24U block usually associated with the N1 engine was not used, though the RB26DETT’s internals are believed to be hand-assembled and balanced. Like the NISMO, the N1-specced GT-Rs ditched turbos with ceramic wheels for larger units housing steel turbines. While those changes did not boost rated power, they increased the engine’s longevity under hard use. To complement the powertrain, V-Spec cars boasting the N1 package also received inclusion of Brembo brakes, BBS wheels and a retuned ATTESA E-TS four-wheel steering system.

As significant as the Bring a Trailer car is, it has some flaws. The paint on the intake manifold shows some wear, and a proper refinish will require the removal of the manifold. The undercarriage is clean but far from showroom-fresh. That said, the pinch welds, which can be easily damaged, appear intact—at least, those that we can see from the pictures. However, with 27,000 kilometers (approximately 16,700 miles) on the clock, it’s unreasonable to expect perfection.

A huge plus is how little this car has been messed with. Exhaust upgrades and pod filters in place of the factory air box are frequent sights with these cars, even one with mileage this low. Another boon is the presence of the factory-spec 180-kph speedometer; these are commonly swapped for higher-reading units, a change which usually brings the true mileage of the car into question. The only time the car’s previous owner gave into the temptation to upgrade the car was when they installed a HKS electronic boost controller.

1994 Nissan Skyline GT-R V-Spec N1 engine bay r32
Bring a Trailer/Tristan2k

As of this writing, the car on Bring a Trailer is sitting at $60,000 with a little under a week to go. A surprisingly low opening salvo for a car so sought after by collectors as well, being #63 of 64 V-Spec N1s produced. For context, these cars recently saw a 100 percent increase in their Hagerty Price Guide value—the best examples in existence now top an estimated half-million dollars—so we expect that figure to spike as we approach the final day of bidding.

After all, the chances of someone offering any N1-spec R32 on the public market are low; if you really want one, you will need to solicit a reputable JDM broker to find one while you patiently wait for someone to turn theirs loose. Unless, of course, your bid is the highest on Bring a Trailer when the auction closes next week.

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