Nissan And Sony PlayStation® Announce Biggest Ever GT Academy Program For 2013

Nissan And Sony PlayStation® Announce Biggest Ever GT Academy Program For 2013

Online competition phase to be run on exclusive Gran Turismo®6 demo

Become the next 'NISMO Athlete' to race for Nissan

PR Newswire

FRANKLIN, Tenn., May 17, 2013

FRANKLIN, Tenn., May 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --Nissan Americas and Sony
Computer Entertainment America LLC revealed that the groundbreaking GT Academy
televised competition will return for a third season in North America. GT
Academy 2013 will be the biggest yet, with more competitors than ever before
anticipated. The preliminary online qualifying element of the competition will
run from July 2 to July 30 on a demo of the just announced and all-new Gran
Turismo^®6 (GT6™) game exclusively on PlayStation^®3. Pre-registration will be
available June 11- July 2.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20020701/SFM066LOGO)

Since its inception in Europe in 2008, GT Academy's acclaimed
virtual-to-reality competition has attracted over two million entries, with
gamers and motor sport fans battling it out on Gran Turismo for the chance to
become real Nissan racing drivers. For the past two years in North America,
more than 450,000 online gamers have competed. Six former winners of the
competition, which now runs globally in Europe, the USA, Germany, Russia, and
the Middle East and South Africa, are now NISMO Athletes competing in
top-level racing for Nissan.

Nissan's Director of Global Motorsport, Darren Cox, revealed the plans for GT
Academy 2013 today. Speaking at the famous Silverstone Circuit, during an
event at which the latest version of the famous Gran Turismo game was
announced, he said: "Every year of GT Academy has provided excitement and
firsts, and 2013 will be no exception. The selection process and Driver
Development Program are now so robust that we are turning out some genuinely
fast racing drivers. At its core GT Academy remains a highly-accessible route
into professional motor racing for people who would otherwise not have the
opportunity. Unearthing genuine driving talent from the world of gaming is a
real example of digital age performance and the innovation for which Nissan is
famous. We are predicting that more people than ever will enter the
competition this year on the stunning new GT6 demo."

Kazunori Yamauchi, President of Polyphony Digital, explained: "GT Academy is a
fitting platform for the Gran Turismo community to preview GT6 for the first
time, as we aim to bring the worlds of virtual and reality closer than ever.
We are very proud of this partnership with Nissan, and we have aimed to make a
very appealing and accessible competition featuring a range of their cars. The
challenges, even at this early stage of the competition, are designed to
improve people's race craft before they even make it to driving real cars. We
have also incorporated the Silverstone circuit for the first time in Gran
Turismo. This should ensure that competitors will arrive at Race Camp better
prepared than ever."

With the online qualification rounds offering a sneak preview of Gran Turismo
6, and the NISMO athletes blazing a trail in motorsports around the world –
including Spaniard Lucas Ordonez (2008 winner) and England's Jann
Mardenborough (2011 winner) racing at the 2013 Le Mans 24 Hours for Nissan –
this season sets the stage for the most talent-stacked competition ever.
North America's 2012 champion Steve Doherty is competing in a Nissan GT-R in
the Blancpain Endurance Series abroad. With that foundation of racing
success, the entry levels for this year's video and on-track driving skills
competition are expected to reach an all time high.

The format of GT Academy North America has the 32 fastest PlayStation gamers
from across the continent compete in the National Finals at a location to be
announced soon. Once 16 finalists advance, the action will then make the
transition from the virtual world to real Nissan sports cars in the intense
televised final at Silverstone Circuit, now the established home of the GT
Academy Race Camp.

The winners of each of the GT Academy competitions will then be put through an
incredibly intensive and thorough Driver Development Program, rated among the
best in the world, in order to qualify for the ultimate competition prize - a
full season racing a Nissan GT-R GT3 NISMO in a top-level championship.

Details of how to enter GT Academy 2013 can be found on various platforms
including: https://www.facebook.com/GTAcademyNA, http://us.gran-turismo.com
and www.twitter.com/GTAcademy.

Additional notes:
About the Gran Turismo® Franchise
Gran Turismo® celebrates its 15^th anniversary in 2013, having first appeared
internationally in 1998. The multi-award-winning franchise has been the most
successful ever for PlayStation®, and in 2013 it also surpassed worldwide
sales of 70 million units. Various iterations of Gran Turismo have been
created for PlayStation® , PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system,
PlayStation®3 and PSP (PlayStation® Portable), and have always been regarded
as the best and most authentic driving simulators ever created due to
true-to-life graphics, authentic physics technology and design. Since the
inception of Gran Turismo, famed creator Kazunori Yamauchi and Polyphony
Digital Inc. in Japan have revolutionized the racing category as we know it
today. His offerings provide the most realistic driving simulation in the
industry and a unique medium for automotive manufacturers to showcase their
products. Gran Turismo®5, the latest iteration of the game, was released in
November, 2010 and has sold 10 million units worldwide.

About Nissan North America
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive styling, engineering,
consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and
manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the
Nissan Green Program and has been recognized as an ENERGY STAR® Partner of the
Year in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency.
More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan
and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at
www.NissanUSA.comandwww.InfinitiUSA.com, or visit the Americas media sites
NissanNews.com and InfinitiNews.com.

About Sony Computer Entertainment America
Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC continues to redefine the
entertainment lifestyle with its PlayStation® and PS one® game console, the
PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the PSP® (PlayStation®Portable)
handheld entertainment system, the ground-breaking PlayStation®3 (PS3™)
computer entertainment system and its online and network services the
PlayStation®Network and PlayStation®Store. Recognized as the undisputed
industry leader, Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC markets the
PlayStation® family of products and develops, publishes, markets and
distributes software for the PS one, PlayStation®2, PSP and PS3™ systems for
the North American market. Based in San Mateo, Calif., Sony Computer
Entertainment America LLC serves as headquarters for all North American
operations.

Visit us on the Web at http://www.us.playstation.com.

About NISMO
For the full Nissan Motorsports and Nissan Performance story please click
here, and checkout the Nissan Performance Facebook page at
http://www.nissanusa.com/performance/.



SOURCE Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC

Website: http://www.us.playstation.com
Contact: Steve Yaeger - 615-725-4443, Nissan Americas,
Steve.yaeger@nissan-usa.com, or Farm Saechou - 650-655-5219, Sony Computer
Entertainment America LLC, farm_saechou@playstation.sony.com