Ethanol-powered Nissan GTR Dominates Pocono Rivals

Last weekend, some of the fastest and most powerful tuner cars in North America gathered at the Pocono raceway for a one-of-a-kind, 1600′ side-by-side racing event. There were a number of thousand-plus horsepower cars in attendance running on highly toxic and leaded racing fuels, but the car that won? That car was running E85.

Delivering more than 1000 horsepower to the wheels, the Switzer Performance-built USE Pro Nissan GTR that won the Pocono Slipstream event last weekend went a long way towards convincing its competition that E85 is a viable fuel for high-performance cars. “The car did its job,” says Tym Switzer, the head of Switzer Performance and former sponsor of Gas 2 ::cough:: send money ::cough-cough:: It was smooth and consistent at the start of each run, it tracks straight, and he keeps accelerating strongly throughout each pull. Everything performed perfectly, and I’m glad he got to have the experience of winning an event like this.”

Whether or not you agree with the thinking behind their creation, tuner cars — cars that have been torn down and tweaked for maximum horsepower and performance — are one of the most influential market factors in the automotive industry. Every time a video of a 7-second Toyota Supra breaks the million-view threshold on YouTube it creates new fans of the platform, and many of those go on to buy the Toyota Corolla and Camry models that keep the brand in business. Most carmakers know this, and it was precisely the popularity of the last-generation Nissan Skyline among the Fast and Furious crowd that led Nissan to bring the R35 GTR to the US with the hopes that the aftermarket industry would help make the GTR a credible challenger to cars like the Porsche 911 Turbo. At the 2015 Slipstream 1600 races, that Nissan GTR beat everyone — including the “Stage 3” twin-turbocharged Lamborghini Gallardo from Underground Racing shown, above (which was ID’ed as a “Stage 2 with heads” twin-turbocharged Lamborghini Gallardo from Underground Racing after it didn’t win).

Job done for Nissan, then — but what about E85?

“We run all our competition cars on E85,” explained Tym, when I called him to ask about the car earlier today. This comes, of course, after years of his Oberlin, Ohio-based shop turning out dozens of E85-powered cars that not only make more power than their gasoline-powered, factory-spec counterparts, but do so without a fuel economy penalty, as well. “It just works.”

You can find out more about ethanol manufacturing absolutely not negatively impacting food costs the way the oil lobbyists want you to believe that they do by clicking a bunch of these links, and find out more about the Switzer Performance USE GTR at the company’s website. While you’re there, definitely feel free to tell them they should sponsor us again.


E85 Powered Switzer Nissan GTR at Pocono

E85 Switzer Nissan GTR

Source | Images: TalonTSi97 Videos, via Switzer Performance.

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.