Nissan, along with its partner PlayStation, today launched Nissan PlayStation GT Academy, a driver discovery and development programme that could be the gateway to motorsports for motor racing aspirants in India. With the launch of GT Academy, Nissan, one of India’s youngest global automobile brands, will have the opportunity to connect even more closely with the Indian audience.
The international award-winning Nissan PlayStation GT Academy is in its sixth year and has been hugely popular and successful in Europe, Russia, the USA, the Middle East and South Africa. Today’s launch signifies India’s inclusion in the newly-created international league.
GT Academy’s Indian qualifying rounds will begin with ‘Live Events’ in high-footfall shopping malls in five select Indian cities and at a later stage will also include an online qualifying round that will be hosted on the PlayStation Network (PSN). Nissan hosted the inaugural round of the competition on February 6, 2014 at the Delhi Auto Expo, organized at the India Expo Mart, Greater Noida in the National Capital Region.
Matthew De La Haye, Nissan’s Vice President Communications, Africa, Middle East, India and Europe said, “We’re delighted to launch GT Academy in India; bringing the programme here reinforces our commitment to growing the Nissan brand and developing relationships with both existing and potential customers. GT Academy really proves that Nissan stands for innovation and excitement for everyone.”
GT Academy is an innovative platform that offers aspiring racers and gaming enthusiasts to register, compete and potentially win a place in the coveted driver discovery and development programme.
Entered by racing on the Gran Turismo®6* video game, exclusive to PlayStation®3, GT Academy is a ‘virtual to reality’ programme that will test the racing acumen of enthusiasts through a time-trial competition on PlayStation GT6 racing simulators. The time-trials should be considered as qualifying rounds and will be hosted at shopping malls in New Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Chennai.
Out of the five cities, fourteen contestants who clock the quickest lap times will be eligible to compete in the National Final, the first gateway to GT Academy’s coveted International Race Camp. The 14 contestants who enter the National Final will need to go through a two-day intensive physical and mental training examination programme which will filter out only six contestants who will be eligible for the International Race Camp at Silverstone in the United Kingdom.
Popular among international contestants as the best one week of their lives, the Silverstone Race Camp will include the six shortlisted Indian contestants and pit them against 18 qualified contestants (six each) from other nations that are also new to the programme. Under the supervision of experts from the world of motorsports all international contestants will undergo and endure exhaustive training for mental and physical strength. Their driving skills will be tested and honed on the Formula One Silverstone motor racing circuit in Nismo-tuned Nissan 370Zs and GT-Rs. GT Academy’s Silverstone Race Camp will eliminate all but one overall winner, one from any one of the competing nations, who will then move on to the Driver Development Programme and learn all the skills necessary to compete in an international ‘graduation race’.
Darren Cox, Nissan’s Director of Global Motorsports said, “For many reasons having India join the GT Academy programme has been a long held personal objective of mine and I’m proud that it has now come to fruition. GT Academy is getting huge international interest. We know that there are gamers outside of the traditional GT Academy territories that want a shot at winning so in 2014 we have extended the program to India as well. Nissan is an international company with global ambitions and it’s exciting that GT Academy reflects that.”
Ordinary people across the world, with an aspiration to pursue a career in motor racing have found the opportunity of their lifetime in the Nissan PlayStation GT Academy driver discovery and development programme.