This 10-km R34 Skyline GT-R is set to test the upper end of the JDM market
Every so often, an automaker creates a vehicle that becomes the object of desire for an entire generation of car lovers. For those who grew up with Gran Tourismo on their Play Station, 2 Fast 2 Furious on their TV, or Sport Compact Car and Super Street magazines on their bedside tables, the R34 Skyline GT-R is that car. There may be other JDM legends like the Subaru 22B or the Honda NSX-R, but for most JDM lovers, the R34 surpasses them all. That is why serious collectors and GT-R enthusiasts immediately took notice when this 10-km R34 GT-R came up for purchase through BH Auction in Japan.
The car offered for sale is not simply a standard GT-R but an extremely low-volume and highly sought-after V-Spec II Nür. The Nür was the final sendoff for the R34 Skyline GT-R and a nod to Germany’s famous Nürburgring. Unlike many of today’s “special editions,” which are cosmetic only, these Nür cars are truly special. For starters, standard GT-Rs weren’t eligible for the Nür upgrade: Only V-Spec II and M-Spec trims qualified, and, as such, were already well-upgraded with more aggressive aero, a carbon-fiber hood (V-Spec II only), an improved ATTESA AWD system, and tuned suspension. Make your V-Spec II or M-Spec a Nür, and Nissan added some neat details such as a 300-km/h speedometer, special badging, and a personalized book. That wasn’t all, of course.
The most important factor to hardcore GT-R fans is the Nür’s N1 engine. Before the Nür became available in 2002 (and for that year only), the N1 mill was reserved for stripped-down, race-ready GT-Rs. The standard RB26 engine was already stout, and the N1 added significant reinforcements to the block and the rotating assembly. In total, Nissan added the Nür package to 1003 R34s: 285 M-Specs and 718 V-Spec IIs. The car we’re looking at today is one of the latter set.
In the hierarchy of R34 Skylines, Nürs sit towards the top and are the most sought-after by serious collectors only being surpassed by the NISMO Z-Tune in scarcity and price. These cars all represent a new wave of blue-chip JDM collectors gaining traction in the market. Values of R34 Skylines have risen dramatically over the past few years even without U.S. buyers being major players in the market. (Thanks to the “show or display” exemption within grey-market legislation, some R34s are legal to own in the U.S.—but the exception applies only to V-Spec cars finished in Midnight Purple II and to M-Spec Nürs. The only other U.S.-legal examples are the ones imported by MotoRex in the early 2000s.) While there are reputable importers who offer the option to purchase and store a R34 until it reaches 25 years of age, so far American buyers likely have minimal influence in the R34 market.
You might be asking: What is this particular car worth? Well, BH Auction hasn’t listed a price and, as we write this, the car is already listed as under negotiation. We can hazard a guess, though. Back in January of 2018, this V-Spec II Nür sold at BH Auction’s sale at the Tokyo Auto Salon. At that time it brought a surprising 35,200,000 Yen ($316,553). Since then a 362-km V-Spec II Nür finished in Millennium Jade listed for $485,000. It is easy to expect that a 10-km car today could easily command over half a million dollars. Don’t expect an example like this one to resurface any time soon. Although this is not a car on the “show or display” list, it is bound to draw plenty of attention even from the states.
Since the R34 market is already white-hot, expect prices to continue to rise as we approach the 25-year mark for the early production cars, which will be eligible for U.S. import as of January 2024. Solid R34s are already at $170,000 in Japan, and “show or display”-legal models are clearing $300,000; now is the time to jump on an R34 before the real madness starts—even if that means storing it Japan for a few years.