The first Skyline GT-R model appeared in February 1969 in sedan form, and was called the PGC-10. It was also known by
its fans as Hakosuka (hako is “box” in Japanese, suka is short for “Skyline”) due to its boxy four-door design. In
comparison to other Skylines, the GT-R's were stripped of all unnecessary equipment in order to be as light as possible.
The cost of a PGC-10, which was primarily designed for racing, was roughly twice that of the base model GC-10. From a
visual perspective, the GT-R only had subtle exterior changes in comparison to the GC-10. These subtle changes were
primarily in the form of extended wheel housings in 1970 to host larger tires. Other than that, the red GT-R emblem
was the only distinguishing mark.
The GT-R utilized the S20 which is a 1989cc DOHC 24-valve inline-6, and was originally used in the Nissan R380. Power
was rated at 160hp @ 7k rpm (comparable to the more popular German and Italian cars of the time) and was transferred
to the rear wheels via a 5sp manual gearbox. When the motor was initially introduced, it utilized three Weber 40DCOE
carburetors, which were later replaced with a Lucas mechanical fuel injection system. The GT-R used a strut-based
front suspension and a semi-trailing arm independent rear suspension. With an original wheelbase of 2640mm, the
PGC-10 sedans were known to have strong understeer, thus requiring race drivers to brake exceptionally hard in
corners in order to swing out the rear end. While fans loved to see these exhibitions, it was tiring to the drivers
and actually lowered the potential of the GT-R.
In March, 1971, the KPGC-10, a 2-door version of the GT-R, was released. Wheelbase was shortened from 2640mm to
2570mm and the overall weight was reduced by 20kg. The car received a wider body, wider wheel housings, and had
optional rear wings and lower wind screens. Wider tires increased handling potential.
By the time the C-10 version of the GT-R was retired, the sedan version had racked up 33 victories in 1.5 years,
and the coupe stretched this to 50 through 1972. The GT-R was the first Japanese performance car to truly beat the
best European sports cars of the time and laid the foundation for the legendary "GT-R" known today.