A Nis­san GT-R with a PS4 con­troller

Rotorua Review - - MOTORING -

Gam­ing equip­ment now con­trols a real-life rac­ing car. By David Lin­klater.

The Nis­san GT-R is often thought of as the ul­ti­mate PlaySta­tion (PS) car.

But to mark the re­lease of the lat­est Gran Turismo Sport game and two decades of in­volve­ment in the GT-game se­ries, Nis­san has cre­ated a one-off re­mote-op­er­ated GT-R that you can ac­tu­ally drive with a PS4 con­troller.

The re­mote-con­trol ve­hi­cle – dubbed the GT-R/C – is ca­pa­ble of 315kmh with­out any­body ac­tu­ally be­hind the wheel.

The GT-R/C has been put through its paces by Nismo rac­ing driver Jann Mar­den­bor­ough around Sil­ver­stone’s fa­mous Na­tional Cir­cuit in the UK. Jann con­trolled the GT-R/C from the cock­pit of a Robin­son R44 Raven II he­li­copter, which had been given special per­mis­sion to op­er­ate at a low al­ti­tude.

Mar­den­bor­ough is handy with both PS4 con­troller and steer­ing wheel: he’s one of the most suc­cess­ful win­ners of GT Academy, Nis­san’s ‘‘driver dis­cov­ery and de­vel­op­ment’’ pro­gramme that puts gamers into real-life mo­tor­sport.

The GT-R/C is built around a stan­dard-spec V6-pow­ered 2011 R35 – which dates from the same year Mar­den­bor­ough won the GT Academy.

On Mar­den­bor­ough’s fastest lap (1:17:47), the GT-R/C av­er­aged 122kmh and reached a top speed of 211kmh. The ‘‘driven’’ aver­age for the 2.6km loop cir­cuit is around 134kmh.

The GT-R/C is fit­ted with four ro­bots that op­er­ate the steer­ing, trans­mis­sion, brakes and throt­tle. Six com­put­ers mounted in the boot up­date the con­trols at up to 100 times per sec­ond. The steer­ing po­si­tion is mea­sured to one part in 65,000.

The un­mod­i­fied PS DualShock4 con­troller con­nects to a mi­cro­com­puter which in­ter­prets the joy­stick and but­ton sig­nals and trans­mits them to the GT-R/C’s on­board sys­tems. The wire­less oper­a­tion has a pri­mary con­trol range of one kilo­me­tre.

To help Mar­den­bor­ough judge the ve­hi­cle’s speed through the cor­ners, a Race­l­ogic VBox Mo­tor­sport sen­sor was in­stalled to re­lay speed data to a LCD dis­play in the he­li­copter cock­pit.

The GT-R/C is also fit­ted with two in­de­pen­dent safety sys­tems, op­er­at­ing on dif­fer­ent ra­dio fre­quen­cies, which al­low two ad­di­tional op­er­a­tors to ap­ply full ABS brak­ing and cut the en­gine in the event of the main op­er­a­tor los­ing con­trol of the ve­hi­cle.

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

Nis­san GT-R/C ca­pa­ble of 315kmh – all cour­tesy of a PS4 game con­troller.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.