Archive for category Design

Components layout

To better understand how the Nissan GT500 will be built when it comes to its components, I did a couple of simple drawings to illustrate how the airflow (air intakes/outlets), oil system, fuel system, electrical system and exhaust will be built.

These are just simple drawings, not a final design. But an illustration of the major positioning and layout of some core components of the car. I’ll try my best to explain the different layouts in the text next to the pictures, if you don’t understand – don’t worry! It will be much more understandable when the build progresses. ;)

The main goal is to place all components as low as possible, all while trying to fit as much as possible between the front and the rear wheels of the car to get a low and car-centered CGH. This also gives me a more free design space for the chassis and suspension, without the engine or anything else getting in the way of the suspension design.

Exhaust layout

Exhaust layout

Due to the engine placement and planned aerodynamics, there isn’t much options for the exhaust system.

The turbo will be placed in front of the engine instead of beside it, to give some legroom for the driver as well as taking away some of the heat from the drivers feet. The exhaust manifold will probably not be the most well designed manifold, but there will always be compromises when everything about this car needs to fight over small areas of free space.

The exhaust system will then be routed past the engine on the passenger side and go all the way back between the seats before connection to the catalytic converter will be made. All the time keeping the exhaust as low as possible (as close to the belly pan/undercarriage as possible).

After the catalytic converter the exhaust will divide in to a “Y-pipe” and routed through two separated silencers behind each seat (still behind the rear firewall/bulk head).

Finally the exhaust will exit in “flat” outlets in each side skirt, just in front of the rear wheels.

Electrical layout

Electrical layout

The main goal of the electrical system is to keep it as compact as possible. Few components, short cable distances and keep everything easy accessible is the key values that I’ll try to achieve.

The battery will be placed behind the passenger seat (behind the firewall/bulk head). The engine ECU and the fuse box will be positioned between the seats against the rear firewall/bulk head.

A large single harness will go from the ECU/fuse box to the switch panel (which will hold all switches for fans, pumps, etc.) mounted between the seats. From the switch panel the harness will go on to the main engine plug/outlet and the dash.

When the main engine plug is disconnected all electrical cables going to and from the engine will be disconnected and the engine can then be unmounted from the car without the hassle of disconnecting each and every cable.

The dash will be able to display everything that I need to observe during driving. No other gauges will be used.

Some small harnesses will run to the front and rear of the car providing power to the lights and various sensors throughout the car.

Airflow layout

Airflow layout

This drawing is intended to illustrate the purpose of the air intakes and outlets, but it isn’t easy to describe with simple drawings exactly how the airflow is planned. This illustration does not cover the planned aerodynamics and ground effects, just the air going in and out of the car. The chassis will determine the final routing of the air intakes and outlets, but this illustration gives you an idea of how the final solution will be like.

The dark yellow/orange colored fields is for the brake cooling. the two huge holes in the front will lead cold air to the center of the front brake discs and the intakes in the rear wheel arches will do the same for the rear brake discs. The hot air will hopefully then evacuate through the rear of the arches, same principle for both the front and the rear of the car.

The green colored fields are the air intake for the water- & intercooler. The big intake in the middle of the front will lead air into a duct, through the coolers and then divide into two separate outlets, each leading the hot air out in the back of the front wheel arches.

And finally the probably most interesting airflow through the car, the light red field. The intake between each front headlight will lead air through a duct and via a large electric fan pushing air through the engine compartment, past the exhaust, gearbox and differential where another electrical fan will help lead the air out in the huge box placed on top of the rear diffuser. Hopefully that made some sense… ;)

The purpose of this airflow (the red field) is to try to keep the main heat away from the inside of the car and keeping the engine, gearbox, exhaust and differential at a decent temperature. Together with some basic insulation around the exhaust and engine compartment I hope that this solution will do the job of keeping thinks cool, but most likely this will be an area that needs modification after the car has been test-driven under hard conditions.

(And yes, the big box on top of the diffuser has nothing to do with the ground effects, it’s just the outlet for the main airflow through the car.)

Oil & fuel layout

Oil & fuel layout

The oil & fuel system will be quite basic.

An oil tank for the dry sump pump will be placed behind the drivers seat (behind the firewall/bulk head). One of the caps in the left rear window of the car will be the oil fill. Since the rear firewall will cover the tank entirely, accessing it won’t that easy. So an oil change will be done by detaching the  drive belt to the dry sump pump, detaching some oil hoses and using a screwdriver to turn the pump around. Thereby emptying the engine and thank from oil and refilling oil trough the cap in the rear window. There will also be a small catch tank mounted for the crankcase ventilation.

The fuel tank will be placed after the differential, still as low as possible without disturbing the rear diffuser. Which fuel pump(s) and if I should use separate catch tank or a built in one is still undecided.

The fuel- and oil-lines will go separate containers (basically metal tubes protecting the lines from the exhaust heat)  through the the engine compartment, keeping the lines as short as possible.


And that is basically the main components of the Nissan GT500 (other than the chassis, body, wheels, brakes, etc.). No power steering, no ESP, but hopefully a car with good control, awesome grip and power ;)

(But wait a second… where is the air filter and the engine oil cooler? Well, their position and airflow will be determined after the chassis has been built.)

When more drawings of other layouts are added, you’ll be able to see them in their own gallery here.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

The design, by Vizualtech

To start of the build I needed to get the image of the final product out of my head. And since I’m a terrible designer and no good with pen and paper (I make killer looking stick figures though!) I decided to contact a professional design firm to help me with the design.
Vizualtech Design has an impressive portfolio and Bo Zolland does some amazing 3D work. After a chat with Bo my choice of design firm was done.

After sending over tons of images, descriptions and ideas, Bo Zolland started to work on some prototypes of the design. Throughout the process of making the 3D model I was always involved, each day receiving new material to comment on. It was very exciting seeing the model take form and to see how accurate it became.

Though it is my build and I had a lot of things determined, Bo came up with a lot of new design elements that I really liked.

So the final design is a collaborated view of how the car should look like and I couldn’t be more happy with the results! I think it look really cool and has all the key design elements that I wanted.

All that being said, I can’t emphasis the fact that it’s “just a design” enough. The design helps me visualize what the final car will look like, it gives me a clear goal to work towards and gives me energy when I loose motivation or find my self stuck in the build process. (Of course I have a couple of images printed and put to use as wall paper in the garage ;) )

The final car will most likely look much like the design, but with small modifications here and there.

“Function before form” is a key value for this build and whenever the chassis, aerodynamics or anything else isn’t going to work with the design, the design will be modified.

Some images

The rear view. The most comments I’ve received is on the rear end of the car, mostly people doesn’t seem to like the diffuser, the box over the diffuser, the rear wing and the outlets in the rear arches. Well, basically everything about the rear of the car… :)

I don’t care much about those comments though, I really like the rear end.

Nissan GT500 design by Vizualtech Design
All the air intakes/outlets will have a proper and intended function. I’ll describe all that later on. Nissan GT500 design by Vizualtech Design
From this angle you can get a feel of just how wide a 2000mm car is when it’s based upon a ~1730mm wide car. I also really like the wheel arches going up through the hood. This is however not just a design element, it’s needed to allow spring compression without the tires grinding on the inside of the arches. When the body is lowered this much and with ~630mm wheel diameter in front, the raised wheel arches are necessary. Nissan GT500 design by Vizualtech Design
A future look? I really like this rendering, hopefully the car will look just as cool as this rendering when it’s sits in the garage :) Nissan GT500 design by Vizualtech Design

Again, I’m extremely satisfied with the work of Vizualtech and the design itself. And when it’s time for the dash and interior to take shape I’ll contact Bo again to get help with the layout and design. This due to the fact the interior won’t be easy to figure out with the engine mounted inside the car, starting from the front windshield and going back.


When Vizualtech published the images on a couple of site (after my approval of course), with the title “Vizualtech Time Attack Nissan 200sx”, the images got a huge spread.

It was a real treat reading through all the discussions and comments on the images and I also found a short article from Top Gear on the design that you can find on the Press page.

More images

See all images of the design in the gallery. Due to memory limits of the hosting for I can’t upload any really high resolution images. But you’ll find some high res images here.

Tags: , ,