Believe it or not, there is such a thing as a Nissan Skyline GT-R saloon. To mark the Skyline’s 40th birthday, Nissan wasn’t interested in baking a cake - instead, it commissioned subsidiary Autech to dump the R33 GT-R’s oily bits in the body of a Skyline saloon.
It was all there - the RB26, an ATTESA-ETS all-wheel drive system, and even the widened arches. The car you see here, however, is something else. It’s a Skyline Impul R33-R, and it’s even more obscure.
Under the skin, this Skyline is a much more humble affair. Impul, founded by Nissan factory racing driver Kazuyoshi Hoshino, used a GTS-T Type-M as a starting point. The RB25 single-turbo inline-six was retained, sending power to the rear wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox as before.
What Impul did was make the R33 GTS-T a whole lot more appealing, adding a subtle but effective body kit, smart BBS wheels, new seats, a stainless steel exhaust and a whole bunch of chassis mods. On the menu was a new strut brace, beefed-up anti-roll bars, and a lower ride height.
Impul initially only made 200 (and another 100 post-R33 facelift, it’s thought), each one of them numbered via special plaques in the cabin. For comparison, Autech made 416 40th Anniversary cars. The car you see here, number 75, spent time in Japan and the UK before being imported into the USA in 2020 - the earliest possible year it would have been legal to under America’s infamous 25-year import rule.
The odometer shows 199,000 kilometres (about 124,000 miles), so it’s been reasonably well used, but given the toughness of the mechanicals, this wouldn’t phase us at all. Since arriving in the States, it’s had a reasonably comprehensive service including an oil change, a spark plug renewal and a fresh fuel filter. The gearbox and differential fluids have been refreshed too.
The Dark Grey Pearl R33 currently resides in Denver, holding a Colorado title. There are a few non-original touches, including a new rear spoiler, a carbon fibre-effect vinyl wrap on the B-pillars and a mirror window tint at the rear. We’re not big fans of the latter two changes, but they’ll be easy enough to reverse.
There are a few imperfections in the paintwork here and there, and the Impul body parts were resprayed not so long ago. It looks to be nice and tidy overall, though.
It’s currently up for online Auction on Bring a Trailer, with the bidding at $10,000 with five days to go at the time of writing. It’s tricky to predict how high that figure will go, but it’ll surely be a fraction of what an Autech 40th Anniversary will cost once they’re old enough to venture over to the US.