MT, PR, 13 May 2008.
Academy: partnership between
PlayStation and Nissan.
Industry leaders PlayStation and
Japanese carmaker Nissan have come together to develop
what they describe as the ultimate competitive driving
test - GT Academy.
The eight-month, pan-European
competition sees virtual and real-life racing merge to
make the wildest dreams of two aspiring race drivers
come true. They win a four-month training programme to
earn their racing licences, followed by a real-life
race driving a Nissan 350Z as part of the Nissan team
at the 24H endurance race in Dubai in January 2009.
To earn a place in GT Academy,
candidates will face a series of elimination-based
competitions on and off the racetrack - starting at a
national level with an online GT5 Prologue tournament
hosted on PlayStation Network.
GT Academy builds on the
long-standing partnership between PlayStation and
Nissan. It began with the Japanese carmaker working
with Gran Turismo developers Polyphony Digital. The
auto company provided vehicles, racing drivers and
feedback to help perfect the game’s ultra-realistic
Interestingly, roles were reversed
in 2007 when Nissan called upon Polyphony Digital to
design the interface for the onboard computer for
the... GT-R, Nissan’s new supercar. In fact5, the
GT-R ‘multifunction meter’ provides drivers with
updates on the car’s performance and systems – a
collaboration recognised as a motoring industry first.
In the latest game, Gran Turismo 5 Prologue on
PlayStation3 (PS3), Nissan’s GT-R joins a garage
filled with 71 dream cars including seven other top
Nissan sports cars.
Speaking at PlayStation Day, David
Reeves, President and CEO, Sony Computer Entertainment
Europe said: “Gran Turismo is one of the most
successful global gaming franchises of the last decade
and is renowned for its realism, quality of design and
in-car physics technology. PlayStation is now part of
the global motor sport community from its games to its
Gran Turismo TV channel – and now the GT Academy.
The academy brings the real and virtual worlds of
racing together and is the ultimate test to see if
virtual drivers have what it takes to race in a
competitive environment where there isn’t the option
to play again.”
Simon Sproule, Corporate Vice
President, Global Communications, Nissan Motor Ltd.,
added: “We're delighted to build on the close
relationship between Nissan and Sony PlayStation. This
represents the competition prize of a lifetime for
racing enthusiasts; a prize that brings the worlds of
gaming and racing even closer together. We look
forward to welcoming our new team drivers for the race
GT Academy goes live at the end of
this month. Entrants must register, via their PS3s, on
the PlayStation Network (PSN) to compete in the
special online tournament. Gran Turismo 5 Prologue on
PS3 has sold over one million units since its launch,
with the Gran Turismo franchise now having sold more
than 50 million units worldwide.