1983 Nissan Bluebird Turbo

This replica, built around an original rally version, was driven by George Fury in the Australian Touring Car Championships in 1983 and 1984 in the Group 'C' category. It also competed in the 1983 and 1984 James Hardie 1000 enduro races.

The car is most renowned for its smashing of the lap record during the top 10 shootout for pole position at the 1984 James Hardie 1000. In the hands of George Fury, the Nissan recorded a stunning 2 minutes 13.850 seconds around the 6.213 kilometer circuit, a time that stood for the next seven years. The record was achieved, not by just "having a go" but from meticulous planning by team manager Howard Marsden. It was quite cold on the Saturday, conditions that suited the turbos, but because the boost was turned right up generating enormous temperatures, it was feared that the turbo would blow. However through ingenuity, favourable conditions and the talent of George Fury, the first sub 2 minutes 14 seconds was achieved.

On the Sunday the Bluebird sprung to the lead, but because of a pile up, the race had to be restarted. Peter Brock got the jump at the restart and won the race in the VK Commodore. That car is also on display in the Museum.

The Nissan Bluebird has a Z18T 1.8 litre 4 cylinder engine with a single overhead camshaft and twin spark ignition. With turbocharging it develops 350hp, quite amazing in such a small engine. This car was the forerunner of other Nissan turbos that culminated in the development of the Nissan GT-R — Godzilla, which was acknowledged as the ultimate Group 'A' car.

National Motor Racing Museum collection