Usain Bolt, needs no introduction. Known for his prowess on the race track as one of the world’s fastest men has tried his hand at automobile designing. Bolt has helped in design of a special Nissan GT-R which is regarded as one of the fastest production cars in existence today.
Bolt’s signature is seen emblazoned in gold paint and this one off vehicle will be seen on the auction block on eBay this month, with all proceeds being donated to the Usain Bolt Foundation that offers opportunities for children in Jamaica, the hometown of the legendary runner.
Usain Bolt will also be working on special limited editions of GT-R which will make it to international markets. Bolt has been appointed as the Nissan Director of Excitement, an apt title for someone who causes much excitement on the racing circuit.
Bolt who will be defending his titles at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro drove the Nissan GT-R at the company grounds near Oppama, Japan. As part of the project Nissan will be taking into account Bolt’s reaction time, acceleration and handling prowess and will develop a special Bolt GT-R specially for the Champion Jamaican.
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To the World: Usain Bolt in the Nissan House
Auto News Release
Usain Bolt “Goes for Gold” with Nissan
World’s fastest man to help develop “Bolt-performance” GT-R
Olympic champion extends brand ambassador role as “Director of Excitement”
Unique Gold GT-R, inspired by medal-winner, to be auctioned for Usain Bolt Foundation
YOKOHAMA, Japan – Usain Bolt, the world’s fastest man and champion Olympic sprinter, is targeting another record-breaking performance by offering his passion and performance instincts to the Nissan team developing a special “Bolt” version GT-R.
Following his world records and medal-horde at the London Olympiad, Bolt today signed a special deal with Nissan Motor Co, Ltd, to extend his role as brand ambassador for the 196-mph GT-R and to become honorary “Director of Excitement” for the company’s ambitious global marketing drive.
Bolt, appearing at Nissan’s world headquarters, said: “Racing is my inspiration, and I want to help Nissan become an even more exciting brand for everyone.”
Toshiyuki Shiga, Chief Operating Officer, welcomed Bolt’s endorsement and deepening ties with Nissan – where he became a brand spokesman on the eve of the London Games. “Nissan shares the spirit of excitement that captivated worldwide audiences at the Olympics. There is no-one better qualified than Usain Bolt to help us translate that spirit into great experiences,” said Shiga.
In recognition of Bolt’s contribution to sports and his automotive enthusiasm, Nissan’s Chief Operating Officer unveiled a unique gold-painted GT-R, which will be auctioned to benefit the Usain Bolt Foundation (http://usainbolt.com/foundation/).
Proceeds from the online auction, details which will be announced later in October, will help the foundation’s work creating educational and cultural opportunities for children and young people in the Olympic Champion’s home country of Jamaica.
The one-off GT-R, to be auctioned on the eBay online auction platform, will be embossed with Bolt’s signature and bespoke interior fittings finished in real gold.
News of the deepening Nissan relationship coincides with Bolt’s pledge to defend his titles at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
As part of Bolt’s partnership with Nissan, the sprinter today test-drove various GT-R models at the car company’s proving ground near Oppama, Japan, where his reaction times, acceleration and other handling capabilities will be used in developing a special “Bolt GT-R” for his personal use.
Additionally, Bolt will start work with Nissan product specialists on a limited-edition version which can be ordered in markets where GT-R is available. Details of this project will be announced at a later stage.
Bolt, who was collected from Tokyo’s Narita Airport in a GT-R driven by F1 racer Mark Webber, is expected to contribute further to Nissan’s “WHAT IF_” global brand campaign.
The campaign, featuring Nissan’s iconic products and breakthrough technologies in billboards at airports around the world, forms part of the company’s Power 88 mid-term business plan – aimed at capturing 8 per cent market share and 8 per cent operating margins.
To continue building brand momentum at Nissan, TV commercials featuring the Nissan LEAF electric vehicle, called “What if you could drive the future, today?”, will also be aired via six major international TV networks starting in October 2012.
Earlier this year, Interbrand reported Nissan’s rise in its latest report of the world’s Top 100 brands: ‘2012 Best Global Brands’. In the ranking, Nissan rose 13 places on the prior-year report to rank 73rd in global brand value.
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Japan’s second-largest automotive company, is headquartered in Yokohama, Japan, and is part of the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Operating with more than 248,000 employees globally, Nissan provided customers with more than 4.8 million vehicles in 2011, generating revenue of 9.4 trillion yen ($US118.95 billion). With a strong commitment to developing exciting and innovative products for all, Nissan delivers a comprehensive range of 64 models under the Nissan and Infiniti brands. A pioneer in zero-emission mobility, Nissan made history with the introduction of the Nissan LEAF, the first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and winner of numerous international accolades, including the prestigious 2011-2012 Car of the Year Japan and 2011 World Car of the Year awards.
For more information on our products, services and commitment to sustainable mobility, visit our website at http://www.nissan-global.com/EN/
To the World: Usain Bolt in the Nissan House
YOKOHAMA, Japan – Jamaica’s multiple gold medal winner Usain Bolt stopped at Nissan’s GranDrive testing track and Yokohama headquarters Thursday, bringing his record-making speed and excitement to Japan.
At the Oppama track, the world’s fastest man tested the Nissan GT-R with Super GT driver Michael Krumm, before heading to the company’s headquarters and meeting Chief Operating Officer Toshiyuki Shiga.
In a busy day of events, Bolt also spoke with the Global Media Center’s Coco Masters about his plans ahead.
Q1. There has been a great deal of speculation about your future. You’ve mentioned a “three-peat” at Rio 2016 and your interest in soccer. What can your fans expect next?
Usain Bolt: Great things. Always just great things. I look forward to shocking my fans, to giving them a good show. I’m just keeping them on their toes – that’s how I do it. So, for me, I never tell. I just make it happen.
Q2. You were chauffeured by Formula 1 driver Mark Webber upon your arrival Tuesday. Today, you drove and rode in a few GT-Rs at GranDrive. Describe the experience.
Bolt: Mark Webber – it was wonderful. We came in and we had a lead car, and we were trying to push him to go faster in the GT-R, and he kept on pushing and pushing until he decided that he was going to just go past him. So, we had a good time coming in. It was exciting for me. Today at the track, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity for me. I really enjoyed it. I tested two different types of GT-Rs – a sports one and a more luxury one. So, for me, it was really exciting. I can’t explain, it was just joy for me because I like speed and I really enjoy driving fast. So for me to be in the GT-R, as safe as I know it is, and to go as fast as I can go was a wonderful feeling.
Q3. There are many fans here today, many kids. You have a foundation dedicated to the cultural and educational development of children. Tell us more about it and today’s announcement regarding the Bolt Gold GT-R.
Bolt: The GT-R will be auctioned off to raise funds for the kids. We’re going to do different things. Mainly, we start from the school year to develop younger kids, to give them computers, more learning books and stuff like that. My motto is that the kids are the future. That’s why I base my foundation on the fact to develop the kids of Jamaica and hopefully around the world soon.