Are these the cleanest unmodified Skylines you can buy? | Top Gear
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Are these the cleanest unmodified Skylines you can buy?

Low-mile, basically stock GT-Rs head to auction. We wrap our heads around the idea of actual original Skylines

Published: 04 Aug 2022
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The old saying goes that if you love something, you should set it free. And we – unsurprisingly enough – love cars, so we understand that the car world is diverse, and that car lovers should be free to do what they want with what they have.

If you want to go full Max Power, or turn your MX-5 into a pre-runner, or if a car just doesn’t work for you unless it’s been donked, fantastic. All that gatekeeping and how things ‘should be’ is for people who’ve found a way to be even more boring than we are.

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Which brings us to the Nissan Skyline GT-R – a car for which the phrase ‘bone stock’ still somehow means ‘just a set of BBS alloys and a new exhaust’. Finding unmodified Skylines is like actually finding the El Dorado or Atlantis, and yet somehow, three decades after they were launched, RM Sotheby’s has found two. Which, presumably, is like finding El Dorado and Atlantis.

As you’ll undoubtedly know, Skyline GT-Rs weren’t that expensive a proposition in decades past, but they were extensively overengineered. Which made them incredible bases for insane performance – just ask the drag racers getting 2,000bhp from street-legal R32s with a factory engine block. And because of their price and potential, Skyline GT-Rs were treated as brilliant jumping-off points, rather than fully realised performance cars.

Which makes an 18,000-mile, just-BBS-and-exhaust R32 – and a 1,000-mile -no-really-bone-stock R33 such rare beasts these days. And now, perhaps thanks to the gift of time and hindsight, we can properly appreciate what incredible machines they were right from the factory. Albeit far too late to snag anything approaching a bargain, of course.

Sotheby’s estimates that the mint R32 and R33 will fetch as much as $100,000 and $180,000 USD respectively – or about £82,000 to £148,000 in current exchange rates. So, perhaps the new rule should be that if you love something, you should leave it alone...

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