AUTOS

First Drive: The 2015 Nissan GT-R Anniversary Gold Edition

Only 30 units of the Anniversary Gold edition will be sold.

The gift associated with 45th wedding anniversaries is the sapphire. But the color of Nissan's 45th Anniversary GT-R is gold -- or what the company calls "Silica Brass."

Nissan plans to sell fewer than 30 of the Anniversary Gold Edition GT-Rs, which with special options will cost about $106,000. But, hey, it comes with a special special gold-colored VIN plate commemorative brass plaque in the center console!

(The base MSRP is $104,365. But you can pay more: There is a non-anniversary NISMO version that costs close to $150,000.)

The new version is a highly modernized take on the original Skyline GT-R. This one features heated leather seats, dual temperature control, a rear view monitor, push button ignition and many levels of connectivity -- from the BlueTooth communications system to the NavTraffic navigation system to the Sirius XM satellite radio link.

It's also fast. (The GT-R's nickname is "Godzilla.") The 3.8-liter turbo V6 engine makes 545 horsepower and 463 pound-feet of torque.

The dual clutch transmission, with paddle shifters, amps up the excitement. Drive control comes in the form of all wheel drive, independent suspension all around, Brembo brakes, electronically-controlled shock absorbers and a variety of "driver-configurable" driving modes.

Like all GT-Rs, it has a singular design. The engine is in front, but the transmission, clutch and transfer cases are in the rear, for superior weight distribution.

The Gold is sleek fun on the city streets, rumbling like a race car from corner to corner, and can rise to freeway speed at a rate that's probably not legal. The zero-to-60 pace has been clocked at under 3 seconds, and the car is capable of top speeds near 200 miles per hour.

The first GT-R broke race track records in 2007 when it clocked faster lap times than any other production car on the road.

I didn't break any records around town, but I broke the back end loose a few times and might have broken a couple of hearts. Any GT-R is a head-turner. The Anniversary Gold Edition drew some wide-eyed stares and hearty thumbs-ups from enthusiasts who apparently knew it was something special when it blew past them.

Twitter: @misterfleming

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