The beginning of the end is underway.
It's amazing that the Nissan GT-R is still in production. Launched for the 2009 model year, Godzilla has received several updates along the way, the most significant happening in 2017 when the tweaked exterior and interior styling arrived. Since then, Nissan has largely stayed the course. Entering the twilight of its life, the 2022 GT-R gets a new limited edition T-spec covered in some cool exterior paint color choices.
Unfortunately, Nissan is reportedly already retiring the GT-R in Australia this November, according to Australian publication Drive. This will end the R35's 12-year run Down Under. But why is this happening in Australia first?
Godzilla no longer meets newly imposed safety regulations, specifically side-impact crash test regulations that become law this November 1. The good news is that Australia is being sent 50 examples each of the T-spec and Nismo trims and it's very safe to assume all will be quickly snatched up. Nissan further confirmed the GT-R's Australian departure, so we're sure this is not merely a rumor.
"Due to the implementation of Australia's unique pole side impact design rules (ADR 85), the Nissan GT-R will not be imported into the Australian market after October 31, 2021. Note that this regulation does not apply to existing models in other markets."
The GT-R has never been a huge seller in Australia since its '09 arrival; just under 1,000 examples have been sold. What could ultimately doom the GT-R in other markets before Nissan intends to cease production entirely are fuel economy standards. The R35 GT-R has always come powered by a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6, now rated as high as 600 horsepower and 481 lb-ft of torque in the Nismo.
Nissan has kept its lips sealed regarding anything related to the R36 model (assuming there will be one). There's been no shortage of rumors claiming it'll be a hybrid, plug-in hybrid, or an all-electric. Given the rapid pace of change lately, it'd make more sense for it to be battery-powered only. The R35 has had a long life and its successor will hopefully enjoy the same fate.