Only last week Nissan announced that its all-new GT-R sports car would be entered into the GT500 class of the SUPER GT series in Japan for the 2008 season. Now we have the first image of the new race car, prepped by Nissan’s own motorsport company Nismo.

This latest shot was taken as the car was undergoing shakedown testing at Suzuka. Full details including vehicle specifications and team structure will be announced at the Nissan Motorsports Press Conference in February 2008.

It has been four years since the GT-R last competed in Japan, when it won the Japan GT Championship in 2003. Nissan’s previous GT-R race car was based on the older R34 series, which ran the straight-six RB26 engines. In its later years Nissan started using the newer VQ V6 series of engines.

Eventually, the R34 was replaced with the new Z33 350Z coupe and now the Z will be replaced with the latest version of the fabled GT-R.