If you’re reading this, you probably have more interest in cars than most of the general public – and if you such keen interest in cars, you probably grew up playing through the extensive Gran Turismo series on your PlayStation.
Have you ever thought that someday, someone somewhere would actually be controlling a Nissan GT-R, one of the most fearsome, fastest-accelerating supercars in the world, with PlayStation’s DualShock 4 controller? Well, start rubbing your eyes cause you won’t be believing what you’re reading.
To celebrate the release of the Gran Turismo Sport and to mark 20 years of Nissan’s involvement in the Gran Turismo series, Nissan Great Britain built what they called the “Nissan GT-R/C” – a one-off project car which was extensively modified to be driven entirely by a DualShock 4 PlayStation controller!
“Driven” by NISMO racing driver Jann Mardenborough from a helicopter around Silverstone’s famous National Circuit, the GT-R is capable of a top speed of 196 mph without restrictions with no one behind the wheel.
The GT-R/C was modified by JLB Design in the UK, using a standard 2011-spec 542 hp V6 R35. It was fitted with four robots that operate the steering, transmission, brakes and throttle.
It’s all very nerdy and scientific – six computers were mounted in the boot to update the controls at up to 100 times a second. The unmodified controller was connected to a micro-computer which interpreted the joystick and button’s signal and subsequently transmitted to the GT-R /C’s on-board systems. The wireless operation has a primary control range of one kilometre.
A Racelogic VBOX Motorsport sensor was installed to relay speed data to a LCD display in the helicopter cockpit to help the “driver” in gauging the vehicle’s speed. In the event of an emergency, the GT-R can independently apply full ABS braking and cut the engine off too!