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Nissan GT-R /C Flies Around Silverstone with No Driver Inside

11 October 2017

The one-off Nissan GT-R/C - with a top speed of 196mph - can be controlled by just a PlayStation 4 gamepad.

GT Academy grad who is now one of Nissan's fastest factory Super GT hotshoes Jann Mardenborough used the PlayStation controller from a Robinson R44 Raven II helicopter overhead to drive the auto, which Nissan deemed the GT-R/C-as in "remote control".

British firm JLB Design fitted the Nissan with four robots to operate the steering, transmission, brakes and throttle.

While this is merely a Nissan publicity stunt, seeing the GTR/C work in real life makes you wonder if there is potential for a giant remote control race series - one which takes a much more relaxed approach to contact during the race...

Dubbed the GT-R/C, the vehicle required some extensive modifications to be controlled remotely, and that meant the controls were entrusted to someone who has some good experience with a controller in his hands - Jann Mardenborough.

A Racelogic VBOX Motorsport sensor relayed speed information to an LCD display in the helicopter for Mardenborough to judge speeds with.

James Brighton, JLB Design Ltd, added: "The GT-R /C presented some unique challenges and a number of engineering firsts for us".

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The fastest lap achieved by Mardenborough was 1min 17.47sec, where the auto reached a top speed of 131mph and averaged 76mph. However, if Mardenborough got it wrong, they had two operators on different radio frequencies who could remotely apply the GT-R/C's ABS brakes and cut power to the engine should Mardenborough lose control.

"This was once-in-a-lifetime, truly epic stuff", said Mardenborough. Driving a full-size, remote-control GT-R to 131 miles per hour at Silverstone whilst chasing it down in a helicopter was an unforgettable experience.

"The GT-R /C has brought my two worlds together - the virtual of gaming and the reality of motorsport - in a way I never thought possible", states Mardenborough.

Controlling the auto during its promotional video was Jann Mardenborough, who won Nissan's GT Academy, which scours the globe for the best Gran Turismo drivers and puts them behind the wheel of real racing cars.

Steering, acceleration, and braking were all intelligently configured, allowing for controlled application so I could really get a feel through the corners and hold it steady down the fast straights..

In 2018, the Nissan GT-R /C will be used in a tour of primary and secondary schools in the United Kingdom to promote future careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects.

Nissan GT-R /C Flies Around Silverstone with No Driver Inside