Long before Michael Jackson named two of his sons Prince, there was a Japanese manufacturer that went by that name. Actually, they were initially called Tachikawa Aircraft Company (builder of the Pearl Harbor-attacking Zeros) but then changed their name to Prince before changing it again to Fuji Precision Industries before finally switching it back to Prince in 1961, just in time to merge with Nissan in 1966. Stick with us, we're getting somewhere with all of this.
None of that would be important to non-WW2 buffs except for one Prince car – the Skyline. We were lucky enough to drive the latest and greatest Skyline (now known as the Nissan GT-R) the other day and noted how it reminded us of a Porsche 959. At that time, we were talking about the two cars' ground breaking technology and performance – but there's another similarity. Both supercars come from humble bloodlines. After all, the Porsche descended from a Volkswagen Beetle. Godzilla's ancestor is the Prince Skyline.
The second-generation S54 Nissan Prince Skyline is a particularly historic car, as it is the first time an inline-6 wound up under the hood. In fact, Nissan had to graft eight inches onto the front of the Skyline (all in front of the firewall) just to shoehorn in the 2.0-liter inline-six from the larger Gloria S40. The 1.5-liter inline-fours went into stumpier cars.
The car above is the S57 Skyline, slightly tweaked for 1967. Called the GT A200 in New Zealand – where this car hails from – the S57 is usually known as the 2000GT and came with three Weber carbs, a limited-slip diff and a five-speed manual transmission. Pretty sweet stuff for 1967... now you see where Godzilla gets it. The only drawback we can see is the 17-hour flight to Aukland.