How much does it cost to daily drive a Nissan GTR (it’s a lot lower than you think)
Click here to see why buying a 2012-2014 Nissan GTR is the best value
The R35 Nissan GTR has been my dream car since it first went on sale back in July 2008. I always told myself that I would own one someday, but as I came closer to making my dream a reality I became hesitant. Like many people I assumed that a car with this kind of performance could not possibly fit my budget to actually own, especially not as my daily driver. But after spending hours researching GTR owner forums and talking with owners I decided to go for it. It’s been 8 months now since I bought my 2014 Nissan GTR Black Edition and I have been pleasantly surprised with how surprisingly inexpensive it is to drive a car with this level of performance every day.
Maintenance: (Free for GTR’s still under the 3 year / 36,000 mile warranty. Link to warranty info) The Nissan GTR is a fairly simple car to do most maintenance on and a person with no mechanical experience could easily watch video tutorials and do the basic procedures himself. This alone can save you a good chunk of change per year if you want to, but even an out of warranty GTR isn’t extremely expensive to have serviced at official Nissan dealerships. For example: an average engine oil and oil filter change at a Nissan dealership will only cost about $150-$250 and Nissan recommends you get it changed every 6k miles. This is only slightly above many German sedans and significantly less than the $500-$1,000 it costs for an oil change on a Ferrari F430 or 458. If you can turn a wrench and have access to jack stands or a lift, you can buy 6 quarts of Mobil 1 0W-40 oil and an oil filter at Wal Mart for just over $30 and do the job yourself in 30 minutes – 1 hour. Youtube has dozens of step by step videos that show you exactly what to do in under 10 minutes and no special tools are required.
If you want to leave maintenance to professionals and still save some money then you can choose to have an independent high performance tuner shop do the work for a fraction of what an official Nissan dealership will charge.
Big services: The most expensive services are at 24k, 36k, 48k, 60k, and 72k miles and include things like changing engine coolant, brake fluid, transmission oil, and differential oil. If you have a Nissan dealership do the work then expect the following prices:
6k: oil change $150-$250
12k: oil change, in cabin microfilter $280-$400
18k: oil change $150-$250
24k: oil change, engine coolant, in cabin microfilter, brake fluid $600-$1,000
30k: oil change, engine air filter $200-$250
36k: oil change, in cabin micro filter, transmission oil, differential oil- $1,100 – $1,500
42k: oil change $150-$250
48k: oil change, engine coolant, in cabin microfilter, brake fluid $600-$1,000
54k: oil change $150-$250
60k: oil change, in cabin microfilter, engine air filter, spark plugs, brake hoses $1,800-$2,500
66k: oil $150-$250
72k: oil, engine coolant, transmission oil, differential oil, microfilter, brake fluid $1,800-$2,500
Yearly cost: ~$1,300-$2,000 if driven ~12k miles per year and all service is done at official Nissan dealership
Tires: With any performance car you really can’t skimp out on tires. The GTR demands fairly wide tires with 255/40 up front and 285/35 rear, buying a full set of Michelin Pilot Super Sports / 4S’s, Toyo R888’s, or Dunlop SP Sport Maxx will run you about $1200-$2000. Most owners get anywhere from 8k-15k miles on their tires with standard street driving, spirited weekend driving on back roads, and the occasional track day. Track days and frequent hard launches will take a large toll on the tires. If you use your GTR as a daily driver and as your weekend / track car then you should expect to change the tires 1 or 2 times a year. Yearly cost: ~$1,200-$4,000
Insurance: Without a doubt insurance will be one of the largest expenses for owning a GTR especially if you are under 30. Many owners aged 35 and up can find full coverage rates of $400-$1,000 per year. Unfortunately for men under 25, it’s almost impossible to find even the most basic coverage for under $3,000 per year. (Check out full story on what it costs to insure GTR for males under 25 here) If you are having trouble finding any affordable quotes you could always try contacting an auto insurance broker to find you a rate that doesn’t end up costing more than the car itself after a few years of owning it. Yearly cost: ~$400-$3,000 per year depending on age and driving record
Fuel: The GTR has a 20 gallon tank and is rated at 16 mpg city and 22 mpg highway but man is this thing terrible on gas when you drive it hard. Most owners observe that they average 15mpg combined and 22mpg highway. When you take your car out on a nice backroad to do some spirited driving and get the revs up, don’t expect much over 11mpg.
Daily driving breakdown: 20 miles a day x 6 days a week + some spirited driving = ~10 gallons per week, 40 gallons per month.
Average cost of 92 octane fuel in US: $3.00 a gallon x 40g per month = $120 a month in fuel costs. Yearly cost: ~$1440 if driven 6,200 miles, ~$2,400 if driven over 12k miles
Car care supplies: When you get a GTR you will most likely start to spend extra time and money into keeping it clean and ensuring the paint is protected. Expect to spend $40 a month if you use quality products for frequent washing, waxing, leather cleaning, and the occasional detail. Yearly cost: ~$480 but heavily dependent on the owner
Final cost to daily drive a GTR at 12k miles per year: $4,780
Everyone’s experience and costs will be different but this estimate is based on the culmination of hundreds of posts on forums from GTR owners all over the US. It’s very easy to cut down these costs especially if you have an independent shop do your maintenance or do it yourself. If the Nissan GTR is your dream car