December 4th 2005 marked the return of the Nismo Festival to Fuji International Speedway. A total of 27,100 fans flocked to the famed racetrack to see the legendary cars that over the past half-century have brought success to both the Nissan and Nismo brands. Some of the most acclaimed national and international racing drivers from Nissan/Nismo's past and present were there to take part in the festivities and to wow the crowds. There was an enormous variety of metal, everything from vintage to racing cars, and of course the popular Japanese D1 Grand Prix racers. The Nismo Festival has over the years combined great entertainment with a friendly family oriented atmosphere where fans could get close to their favorite race cars and talk to drivers, and this year was no exception.

The event kicked off early in the morning with the Opening Ceremony followed by Complete Car Parade, an exhibition parade showcasing Nismo's dedication to building some of the most complete street-tuned machines. Leading the pack was the much acclaimed R34 Skyline GT-R Z-tune, the latest and most extreme factory car Nismo has built. Half a dozen 400Rs followed close behind as well as the homologation special Fairlady Z S-tune GT and of course, the 270R, Nismo's first road car. The cute little March was celebrated in the March Cup Race where Carlos Tavares, EVP of Nissan had a chance to drive around the 4,563 m track side by side with Nismo drivers like Satoshi Motoyama and Michael Krumm. Soon after it was the turn of Japan's best D1 Grand Prix drivers to show off their amazing car control skills as they snaked their way around the track in a haze of tyre smoke.
The dedicated fans who had endured the cold weather conditions were rewarded with a breathtaking concerto of screaming race engines as the Nissan R380-II, R381 and R382 Japanese Grand Prix cars were joined in a demonstration run by the Toyota 7, their fiercest rival during the late sixties.

The country's most famous tuners were all present in the main stand area displaying the latest tuning parts and merchandise. Nismo showed off all of its current parts and complete car lineup as well as giving a chance to people to take home a piece of racing history. Fans desperately fought over carbon fiber bonnets and fenders from GT racers as well as battle-scarred wheels from Nissan's Le Mans and Group C machinery. The weather took a turn for the worse as menacing clouds gathered around Mt. Fuji giving way to an unexpected snowstorm. As a consequence the organizers and tuners decided to cancel the 350Z tuning battle as track conditions were becoming dangerous for the high-powered cars to race on. Not wishing to disappoint the spectators the 350Z race went out on track for a few parade laps behind the pace car despite the uncompromising conditions.
This was also the official debut for Nismo's new R-tune Fairlady Z, which sports a 350 HP naturally aspirated engine as well as latest Nismo body-kit. Despite the constant snow fall the 85 privately owned classic cars made up of vintage Skyline and Fairlady Zs were allowed to slowly drive the track giving way to an evocative display. Shortly after, Nismo surprised everybody by giving a quick glimpse of next year's GT500 350Z racecar, which will attempt to win a fourth consecutive manufacturer title.

The highlight of the action packed day was in the form of the racecar exhibition where Skyline and 350Z GT500 racers joined such historical cars as the R390 GT1, R391 and Gr.A R32 GT-R. The 2005 Festival concluded in spectacular fashion with a surprise fireworks show during the closing celebrations. Even the appalling weather wasn't enough to dampen the spirits of the most devoted show goers, and we hope to be back here next year to celebrate further triumphs for Nismo.

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