The brand Hotworks has been discontinued for some time, and the availability of the Auto Pro Shop series R34 GT-R Z-tune product is very limited and hardly comes by. However, when I knew EA Models Garage was selling it, I ordered it right away and the rest is history. Join me for a close-up review on this one-of-a-kind Nissan diecast.
Hotworks diecasts are known for its upgradeable parts which can be fitted onto the base model of the car. It creates a certain excitement in modifying them, turning a plain car into one that's sportier and attractive. This kit will convert the '02 Nissan Skyline GT-R V-Spec II into '03 Nismo Z-tune proto, the concept model Nissan introduced before the revised Z-tune aimed for 20 production cars.
Popped open the box and laid down the assortment of Nismo Z-tune upgrades. It came with a handy manual to guide you through the tuning process, and a sticker set to decorate the exterior body of the GT-R.
The 1/24 scale Skyline GT-R V-Spec II is already a pretty car by itself before even applying the conversion.
Despite being a smaller scale than the 1/18, I was amazed by Hotworks effort to make the details so accurate in the interior and the exterior. Unfortunately, the door can't be opened ...
... except for the bonnet in front which unveils Nissan's trademark 2.6L RB26DETT engine. In real life, the V-Spec II has 276hp on the papers, but in fact the car had a true factory power output of 325hp. Haha I see what you did there, Nissan.
It's time for Z-tune conversion!
Following the manual, I replaced the front and rear bumpers first. Then, the original RB26DETT engine is removed, and mounted with RB28DETT 'Z1' engine, a bigger strut bar and a Nismo intercooler in front.
I moved to the interior next, fitting in a pair of new Nismo 4-point harness bucket seats, a racing gear knob and MOMO steering wheel. Before putting the popular Nismo LM GT4 5-spoke wheels, the disc brake/caliper set on all four were swapped with the racing ones.
The GT-R stock exhaust line consists of catalytic converter and dual pipe exhaust were replaced with Nismo ones. The bigger single pipe exhaust looks so much better.
The Skyline body is ready to couple with cockpit and base of the car. Just few more screws and it’ll be complete! Oh yes, I didn't apply the Nismo livery onto it because I'd like to keep it clean, looking like the revised Z-tune model.
Check out the big difference between the original R34 GT-R V-Spec II and the Nismo Z-tune prototype. The distinct features I fancy most on the Z-tune are the vents on the hood, the LM GT4 Nismo wheels and the improved aero kits on the bumper.
The fire extinguisher accessory was placed conveniently at the passenger seat, just in case if any fire mishaps occur during the ‘drive’.
The '03' Z-tune prototype had 2.8L RB28DETT 'Z1' engine producing a whopping 600hp, before toning down to 500hp with its updated 'Z2' engine for longer durability in the 20 production unit Z-tunes.
There is this one feature at the bottom of the diecast that I find fascinating, is the ability to adjust the car's ride height and the camber angle of the wheels. Just use screwdriver provided and give it a few twists.
Based on your personal taste and preference, you can give the car a super low approach or extreme negative camber style of tuning. I'd go with default setting. :)
The Nismo Z-tune is the final and the most ultimateR34 GT-R ever made. Like the car, the Hotworks 1/24 diecasts aren't easy to find and if you do see one on the shelves (or just head over to EA Models Garage), do consider getting one as the quality is decent, details are accurate for its size, the pleasure in building it, and most importantly it's an R34 GT-R Nismo Z-tune! :D