NISMO Omori Factory: The R-Tune

Sometimes you come across a car that you will remember for the rest of your life. It’s the kind of car that you’re  thankful for having been able to spend a few minutes with. It serves as an inspiration, a benchmark for everything that follows. For me it was a Skyline GT-R quietly sitting in an ally next to Omori Factory’s showroom in Tokyo.

When you visit Japan, there is no doubt you’ll come across some pretty special cars. But contrary to Tokyo Drift, the city is not where you go to find all the good ones. Tokyo is like any other big city. It’s not car friendly. Everyone walks and uses public transportation. Rightfully so, seeing as it has one of the best subway systems on the planet. I had spent most of my first couple days there chasing down pretty uninspiring, bone-stock Lancers, Silvias and the occasional Skyline. They were cool because it was Japan and that somehow made it more legit. But by my current standards, they were nothing to really write home about. Then there was something a little bit different. It was the last thing Mike and I saw coming out from our visit to Omori Factory. It was undoubtably fast and very beautiful, a real needle in the haystack of Tokyo.

I don’t want to turn this into another car feature. I have no knowledge about what’s been put into this Skyline GT-R. Everything I could say about this car would be assumption. The creations of Omori Factory seem to be quite the mystery and despite the countless hours I’ve spent trying to properly research everything I’ve posted in the last few weeks, I’ve come up with very little. There just isn’t a whole lot documented out there. Not about the engines, not about the cars. So going on assumption, what you’re looking at is the R-Tune. A very special version of the Skyline GT-R and sort of another stepping stone for what eventually became the Z-Tune. From everything I was able to find, the R-Tune is like the Porsche GT3 RS. It’s a street car that is most at home on the track. It’s equipped with Omori Factory’s RB26 R1. It’s sort of a step up from the S1 which was designed primarily for street driving. The R1 is essentially an RB28, using an N1 block. Everything about this engine has been improved to take as much abuse as the track can give it. Inspired from the same engines used in SuperGT, it’s really the ultimate RB26 produced for the consumer, by Omori Factory.

Everything was just right that morning, even the lighting. It was a very humid, overcast day, but the perfect coat of Bayside Blue reminded me so much of my own WRX back home. It reminded me of just how great a car looks in blue. On this morning it lit up the entire ally, impossible not to stop and have a look at.

You’ve found yourself doing it. Standing there, looking at a car, maybe yours, maybe someone else’s. You just look at all the details, inspecting it. It’s one of the best parts about being a car guy. Those moments when you appreciate a machine for what it is. I spent a long time doing the same thing in that ally. Just admiring the R-Tune that was parked in front of me. I probably took 30 pictures of that car. I made damn sure I had documentation of it, so I could look back as I am now and remember how it felt to see it.

I never saw the owner of the R-Tune. We just left it parked there. Who knows, maybe it’s still there, guarding the entrance. It was the first proper Skyline GT-R I’d ever seen in person and for that it remains one of my favorite cars ever. It’s pure, untouched by the hands of any tuning shop except from those of the factory from which it came. It’s a shining example of everything I love about cars. It represents a mentality that is slowly drifting away. People aren’t admiring these cars anymore. I guarantee you someone would comment on the fitment if I invited the discussion on a forum. But this R-Tune works as the whole package. Nothing about it needs to be changed. It’s prefect as it is and I wish it were mine. I would take an R34 over the current GT-R any day of the week. I don’t care how much better the new one is.

So that’s it, the grand finale. The proper finish to a truly inspiring visit to Omori Factory, a shop I had no idea I was visiting at the time. I wouldn’t have had it any other way. It was the introduction to my obsession. An obsession all of us have. One that is so strong it influences our decisions about everything. It’s good to be passionate. It gives you something to look forward to and makes life worth living. Like my visit to Top Secret the following year, that was a good day and I’ll never forget it.

NISMO Omori Factory: Part I

NISMO Omori Factory: Part II




  1. Chris, you should seriously look into a journalism career if you haven’t already. Your writing is always top-notch and your style is definitely more interesting than stories or articles I read in major publications.

    Also, if there was ever a time to ask for high-res photos, I believe this is that time. I’d like to admire the engineering beauty of this R34 in more than just 450×300 pixels.

    Looking at and reading your posts, I’m really looking forward to my own trip to Japan this summer. I won’t be able to see the same things you did, but I do hope to visit at least one tuning shop during my stay.

    1. Nevermind about the hi-res photos. I forgot I added you as a contact on Flickr. haha 😛

  2. Nice write up mate! Is that a 2011 visit? I too wanted to go to Japan soon to check out Nismo factory. And having a friend there I know what the GT-R has done and… Has been doing. The most iconic sportscar from Japan. 😉 just like J.Clarkson said it is the ONLY Japanese contribution on the line of supercars, and he said that during the time the R35 doesn’t exist yet.

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