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Nissan VK
Manufacturer Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
Also called Nissan ZH
Production 2002–
Predecessor Nissan VH

The VK engine (formerly known as the ZH) is a V8 piston engine from Nissan. It is an aluminum DOHC 4-valve design.

The VK56 Titan/Armada/QX56 engine is based on Nissan's VQ V6 rather than the VH V8 used in previous Q45/Cima models. Changes include: a variable polymer intake manifold, newly designed heads, and a larger drive by wire throttle chamber. The intake manifold directs air through different paths at different engine speeds to boost low-end torque or unleash high-end horsepower.




The 4.5 L (4494 cc) VK45DE was introduced in 2002 and is built in Yokohama, Japan. Bore is 93 mm (3.7 in) and stroke is 82.7 mm (3.26 in). Output is 340 hp (254 kW) at 6400 rpm with 333 ft·lbf (451 Nm) of torque at 4000 rpm. Redline is at 6600 rpm. It has an aluminum engine block and aluminum DOHC cylinder heads. It uses SFI fuel injection, has 4 valves per cylinder with VVT and features forged steel connecting rods, 4 one-piece cast camshafts, and an unusual variable-flow induction system optimizes airflow for low- and high-speed operation and low-friction molybdenum-coated pistons and microfinished crankshaft.


The VK45DE is used by Nismo for Super GT races with the Nissan GT-R instead of using the GT-R's VR38DETT twin-turbo V6 engine.[1] The VK45DE was previously used in Nissan's 350Z Super GT car, replacing the previous VQ30DETT used in that car in 2007. In race trim, the Super GT VK45DE produces 500 PS (490 hp) and 52 kg·m (380 ft·lbf) of torque.[2] The engine idles at around 3500 RPM and is restricted to the above specified power output. Without such restrictions, the engine is reputedly capable of producing nearly 800 PS (790 hp).[3] Nismo reasons that by using the engine, they eliminate turbo-lag, save weight and generally prefer the torque curve of the atmospheric V8.

This engine is used in the following vehicles:

  • 2002–2006 Infiniti Q45, 340 hp (250 kW)
  • 2003–2008 Infiniti FX45, 315 hp (235 kW) and 446 N·m (329 ft·lbf)
  • 2003–2004 Infiniti M45, 340 hp (250 kW) and 451 N·m (333 ft·lbf)
  • 2006–present Infiniti M45, 325 hp (242 kW) and 461 N·m (340 ft·lbf)
  • 2004–present Nissan Fuga 450 GT, 333 hp (248 kW) and 461 N·m (340 ft·lbf)
  • 2003-present Nissan President 280 PS (280 bhp) and 451 N·m (333 ft·lbf)
  • 2007 Super GT Nissan 350Z, 490 hp (370 kW) and 52 kg·m (510 N·m; 380 ft·lbf)
  • 2008 Super GT Nissan GT-R, 490 hp (370 kW) and 52 kg·m (510 N·m; 380 ft·lbf)


The VK45DD is the same as the VK45DE but adds an direct injection fuel system. This was Nissans first V8 with direct injection. It produces (officially) 280 PS (206 kW; 276 hp) @6000 rpm and 451 N·m (333 ft·lbf) @3600 rpm. But it has unofficially over 300 PS (221 kW; 296 hp). It has a compression ratio of 11.0.

It was used in the following:

  • 2001–present Nissan Cima


The VK50VE is a 5.0 L V8 engine with 390 hp @6500 rpm and 500 Nm @4400 rpm and redline is at 6800 rpm. Bore x stroke (mm) are 95.5 x 87.7 and compression ratio is 10.9:1. It has Nissans VVEL technology.



The VK56DE is a 5.6 L (5552 cc) version built in Decherd, TN. Bore is 98 mm (3.9 in) and stroke is 92 mm (3.6 in). Output is 317 hp - 320 hp (227 kW) at 4900 rpm with 375 to 390 ft·lbf (509-522 Nm) of torque at 3600 rpm. It has aluminum-alloy block and heads and low-friction molybdenum-coated pistons. The valvetrain is a dual overhead cam (DOHC). It has 4 valves per cylinder with micro-finished camshafts and ductile iron cylinder liners for increased durability.


Nismo also uses the VK56DE for FIA GT1 racing. In race trim, it produces 600 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque.[4]


  • 2004–present Nissan Armada, 317 hp (236 kW)
  • 2004–present Nissan Titan, 317 hp (236 kW)
  • 2004–present Infiniti QX56, 320 hp (240 kW)
  • 2008–present Nissan Pathfinder, 310 hp (230 kW)
  • 2009 Nissan GT-R GT1, 600 hp (450 kW)
    • Note: the Titan numbers are for 87 octane fuel. The 320 hp (240 kW) number for the Infiniti was using premium (91 octane) fuel. Using 91 octane fuel equalized the hp number.


The VK56VD is a 5.6 L (5552 cc) 32-valve, DOHC, Direct Injection Gasoline™ (DIG) aluminum-alloy V8 and features Nissan's advanced VVEL (Varible Valve Event & Lift System). The new DIG™ direct injection system provides better wide-open throttle performance and improved fuel economy and emissions performance by reducing engine knock, improving combustion stability and offered more precise injection control. In the Infiniti M56, it is rated at 420 hp (310 kW) and 417 ft·lbf (565 N·m) of torque.


  • 2010-present Nissan Patrol, 400 hp (300 kW) and 413 ft·lbf (560 N·m)
  • 2011-present Infiniti M56, 420 hp (310 kW) and 417 ft·lbf (565 N·m)


  1. ^ "Autocar article about the Super GT Nissan GT-R". 
  2. ^ "NISMO Japan's Super GT GT-R spec sheet in Japanese". 
  3. ^ "YouTube video of NISMO engineer interview regarding the Super GT Nissan GT-R". 
  4. ^

See also



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