NISMO now offering in-house restoration service for R32 Skyline

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Brandan Gillogly

NISMO just announced that it will begin offering customers a comprehensive restoration service for R32 Skyline owners that want a factory-fresh version of their favorite GT car. The legendary R32 GT-R is among the hottest JDM collector cars in the United States and in the last few years they’ve been making their way, legally, onto U.S. shores.

To start the procedure, NISMO technicians will fully disassemble and inspect the vehicle in order to assess which parts need to be swapped with reproduction pieces and which ones they merely suggest be touched up or restored. Bodywork, aided by 3D measurement, will then return the car’s chassis and body to proper factory specs. Nissan previously announced that it has developed technology allowing for panels to be formed without the original dies used to stamp parts, so panels bent beyond repair can be created as needed. The ingenious process uses robotic arms that sit on opposite sides of the panel that press the steel into the proper shape.

R32 Nissan GT-R toprank 1 rear
Brandan Gillogly

Once the body has been restored to the correct dimensions it can then be fully stripped and recoated to give it the original level of corrosion protection, if necessary. Next, the body heads to a fixture to check torsional rigidity. That’s not something you’ll find at your average body shop.

NISMO’s paint shop will then prep the body panels for paint, which may involve prepping the original finish or the undercoating, depending on how thorough a restoration was deemed necessary.

Nissan R32 GT-R RB26DETT engine
Nissan’s RB26 engine, shown here in RB26DETT form, is known for its tunability and sturdy bottom end. Brandan Gillogly

Meanwhile, the R32’s legendary BR26 engine will be disassembled and scrutinized just as thoroughly as the body. Worn components will be replaced and the entire engine will be assembled with even more precise tolerances than were available back in the ’90s when they were new. Thanks to NISMO Heritage, RB26 engine blocks are back in production, so even the most high-mileage R32 can have a fresh engine built to the original specs. Once reassembled, each engine will be dyno-tested to ensure proper performance and no fluid leaks.

With the body and engine complete, focus then turns to the transmission and the rest of the drivetrain, which receives the same level of attention. Components are scrutinized, restored when possible, replaced when necessary, and balanced for the car’s return to service. The same goes for the car’s computer and wiring harness.

Nissan R32 GT-R interior
This unrestored GT-R still has its original interior. Brandan Gillogly

The last step in reassembly is the interior. Improved fire retardant standards meant that the original fabrics aren’t available, so the interior is reupholstered in materials from the R35 GT-R.

Before delivery, each R32 will be driven by a NISMO test driver and the car will be measured for NVH characteristics as well as steering feel and shock tuning. Finally, the owner will take delivery of their restored R32 along with documents certifying its restoration.

We’re happy to hear that NISMO is taking care of some of its most beloved models and are glad to add the R32 to the growing list of models that manufacturers are rebuilding to the highest standards.

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