Nissan has set about achieving another unique record – this time getting some rather high speeds out of a Nissan GT-R /C around the Silverstone circuit with the car being driven on remote control from a PlayStation controller in a chase helicopter.
The event was also to mark the release of the latest edition of the PlayStation favourite Gran Turismo Sport, with Nissan marking two decades of involvement with the series.
The specially modified Nissan GT-R /C was engineered by UK based JLB Design and incorporates four robotic controllers for steering, gearshift, brakes and throttle. The car is driven by a high speed link to the helicopter and links with a Racelogic VBOX unit to display speed and g-forces.
The car was driven by NISMO racing driver Jann Mardenborough, using a stock Dual Shock controller. Mardenborough is a graduate of the Nissan GT Academy. On Mardenborough’s fastest lap (1:17:47), the GT-R /C averaged 76mph/122kph and reached a top speed of 131mph/211kph – the ‘driven’ average for the 1.6mile/2.6km loop circuit is around 83mph/134kph.
James Brighton, JLB Design Ltd commented; “The GT-R /C presented some unique challenges and a number of engineering firsts for us. We had to ensure the robotics would operate effectively during fast acceleration/deceleration as well as high cornering g-forces; deliver realistic and reassuring control of the car at all speeds; and maintain a robust connection between the car and the DualShock®4 over variable distances and with minimal latency in robot response times.
“I’m delighted to say all these challenges were overcome but it’s testament to Jann’s unique skillset that he was able to master the vehicle’s operation in a very short period of time whilst delivering some truly impressive lap times.”