Nissan has unveiled the engine that’s set to power its 2013 V8 Supercars Championship entry.

The Nissan Motorsport VK56DE engine was launched to the media by Nissan Australia Managing Director/ CEO William F Peffer Jr and Kelly Racing team owners and drivers Rick and Todd Kelly at Kelly Racing headquarters in Melbourne.

The engine, to be used in the Nissan Altima V8 Supercar Car of the Future chassis brings new technology to the V8 Supercars grid, which has featured push-rod V8 engines for the past two decades.

90 degrees in configuration, the engine features all-aluminium block and heads, Double Overhead Cam (DOHC) and 32-valve configuration for quad camshafts and four valves per cylinder – twice the amount of the current engines. The bore and stroke has been adjusted to reduce engine capacity from 5.6 to 5.0 litres to comply with V8 Supercars technical regulations and match its Ford and Holden counterparts.

Nissan will become the only manufacturer to use a production engine in the Championship, using the same engine that will feature in the all-new Nissan Patrol which goes on sale in Australia in early 2013. Built at the Nissan facility in Decherd, Tennessee, USA, the VK56DE also powers various vehicles in the North American market and a NISMO-developed version of the VK56DE powered the Nissan GT-R entry to victory in the 2011 FIA GT1 World Championship.

Kelly Racing, who will be renamed Nissan Motorsport in 2013, developed the engine with the assistance of Nissan’s performance division, Nismo and various other global racing component suppliers.

Todd Kelly was delighted to reveal the engine, but admitted there was still a lot of work to be done before the start of next year’s championship.

“The unveiling of the VK56DE engine is a key milestone in Nissan Motorsport’s journey to the 2013 V8 Supercars Championship grid,” said Kelly.

“We are very pleased to show this engine for the first time. It looks sensational and is a key ingredient to Nissan’s entry into the sport.

“Everyone involved in Nissan Motorsport is proud of the fact that we will race a production-based engine and that we will truly be ‘Powered By Nissan’ [the branding used on Nissan racing engines around the world].

“A huge amount of time and effort has gone into getting the first VK56DE completed and the result is a spectacular looking engine.

“There is still a lot of work to do but we’re proud to unveil our Nissan engine technology today at our team’s facility.”

Peffer added that the carmaker is thrilled to introduce its expertise into V8 Supercars.

“We are excited to show Nissan’s engine technology in V8 Supercars,” he said.

“Using a production engine in our Nissan Altima race car means that our V8 Supercar is truly ‘Powered By Nissan’, with the VK56 engine also powering the all-new Patrol that goes on sale in Australia at the start of next year.

“Our Nissan Altima V8 Supercar will use the latest in engine technology and will look spectacular when it hits the track next year as a perfect example of ‘Innovation That Excites’.”