May 25, 2016

Suited Assassin | Kenji's Nissan GTR

Throughout my time photographing and documenting automobiles, I have been asked numerous times by friends and fans alike. They ask me why do I rarely feature R35 GTRs? Despite the undeniable popularity of the R35 GTR, it has came to a certain point where being in close proximity of an R35 GTR has became a frequent occurrence. It has came to a point where as a car blogger, I won't even look at an R35 twice. With all due respect, why would a person share something that can be seen everyday? This also brings me to another question, what kind of GTR would be considered special?

Luckily, there are GTRs that in my point of view can be considered special. After attending the Zerotohundred Time To Attack event back in October 2015, it came to my attention when it was announced that this street legal R35 GTR was able to clock 2 minutes and 17 seconds lap on the Sepang International Circuit. Compared to the record  held by a full fledged time attack car, the difference is only less than 5 seconds which is absolutely mental. It wasn't until some time later on when I had a chance to ride along in this R35 which really blew my mind. Despite the ridiculous lap record it holds, how the car rides on track strangely comfortable for a GTR. Is this even possible?

As a seasoned gearhead, Kenji has been driving on track for a good number of years now. When it comes to how his car is being set up, it is clear to see he is very particular when it comes to the car's overall balance. Previously before the GTR, he was already performing on track very well with his fully loaded S15 Silvia. In 2009, he decided to try out a new platform to take on track, so purchased an R35 GTR from a close friend to become his new track toy. At first, it was only tuned up around 600 horsepower. After 4 years of track usage, the GTR's transmission broke.

Due to the broken transmission, the GTR was brought to Garage R in Singapore to replace the transmission. So they replaced it with a more robust HKS built transmission for the GTR. That's when they decided to rip apart and rebuild the VR38 motor from the ground up. The recipe they chose was the HKS GT1000 kit for the VR38. It starts of with a bigger displacement of 4.1 liters on the bottom end. After that, they bolted on all the other remaining parts on the motor from the twin GT II 7867 turbines to the iconic HKS intake manifold that you will see on top of the motor.

 For a GTR, Kenji's GTR maintains a very subtle yet pleasing appearance. According to him, he stresses that despite the four figure power output, he wants to keep the GTR as streetable as possible. Up to the point where he can drive the GTR to work on a daily basis. Among one of the factors why he chose the R35 GTR as a tuning platform is because the GTR has the ability to be a dual personality car. Something similar to Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. He can cruise in the city and have a civilized chat with his passenger but when he puts his foot down, the GTR's character changes to a whole different animal.

When it comes the time where the GTR has to be presentable, Kenji made sure that the trim and the exterior was up to his benchmark. Due to dashboard cracking, he sent the GTR to AutoDetailer Studio to refurbish the dashboard. The dashboard was refinished with alcantara whereas the steering wheel was rewrapped with nappa leather gives a better feel for the driver. Of course, Kenji never forgets to have the exterior detailed every now and then which explains why the GTR looks like a million bucks despite the subtle exterior.

After taking a much detailed look at this GTR and the amount of work that has been put into it, it is very clear to see that unlike the majority of R35 GTRs that are on the streets today, this GTR is a beautifully built and pampered machine. This is the kind of modified car that is worth the appreciation due to the amount of thought that was put in in order to build this GTR. It proves a point where a full on street car can perform just as well, if not better than a purpose built track car while maintaining its standard equipment luxuries that come with it from the factory. Although the R35 GTR has become a common sight on the streets today, this GTR is totally in a league of it's own.

Owner: Ling Kenji
Model: 2008 Nissan GTR R35
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

3.8L VR38DETT V6,
HKS VR41 4.1L Full Engine Kit,
HKS Step 2 Camshafts,
HKS Valve Springs,
HKS Full Metal Gasket,
HKS M45HL Spark Plugs,
HKS GT1000 Spec Intercooler,
HKS High Flow Intake Manifold,
HKS Racing Suction Kit,
HKS Race Spec Exhaust,
HKS GT1000 Turbo Kit (GT II 7867 Twin Turbos),
ARP Head Studs,
AMS Main Studs,
AMS Fuel Rail,
AMS Anti Surge Tank,
ATI Super Damper,
Cosworth Engine Bearings,
Forge Motorsports UK Radiator,
Forge Motorsport UK Pressure Reserve Tank,
HKS DCT and Differential Oil Cooler,
Billion Racing Coolant,
HKS Racing Oil,
Syvecs R35 GTR ECU,

6 speed dual clutch automatic,
HKS GR6 Built Transmission,
HKS GR6 8-Plate Clutch,
Dodson Motorsports Sensors,
Gear Selector Shafts,
Transmission Pan Filter,
Willall Racing Transmission Bracket,

HKS Hipermax 4 Coilovers,
Dodson Morotsports Upper Front Arms,
Dodson Motorsports Rear Lower Tow Arms,
Dodson Motorsports Rear Lower Camber Arms,
Megan Racing Adjustable Rear Traction Rods,
HKS Kansai Anti Roll Bars,
Dixcel Specom-A Brake Pads,
Dixcel Type FS Rotors,
Endless RF-650 Brake Fluids,
Girodisc Titanium Brake Pad Shims,
HKS Kansai Brake Cooling Ducts,

Advan Racing GT Premium Wheels 20 x 12jj Offset  +20,
Pirelli P-Zero Trofeo R 305/30/20 (all round),

Aeromotions Front Splitter,
C-West Wide Front Fenders,
Difflow Element 5 Rear Diffuser,
Espirit GT Wing 262,
AutoDetailer Studio Signature Detailing,

AutoDetailer Studio Alcantara Dashboard And Door Reupholstery,
AutoDetailer Studio Nappa Leather Steering Wheel Reupolstery,
Bride Stradia 2 Seats,
HKS EVC Boost Controller,

Garage R, Singapore,
AutoDetailer Studio, Petaling Jaya,
Exquisite Marques, Kuala Lumpur,



  1. I'm no car person, but I love how the steering looks like...and the fact that you chose this GTR, it must be really special..and also that timing...awesome!

    1. Yeah. Its very special indeed. The steering wheel feels really nice in the hands. Glad you like this post

    2. Yeah. Its very special indeed. The steering wheel feels really nice in the hands. Glad you like this post

  2. This vehicle looks very amazing! I find Nissan cars to be some of the most reliable vehicles I have ever driven. I like that it can get enough speed to clear the Sepang International Circuit in just a little over 2 minutes. I also like that it has the ability to ride comfortably on track.