Nissan GT-R

The Nissan GT-R is introduced during the 40th Tokyo Motor Show at Makuhari Messe, on Oct. 24, 2007 in Chiba Prefecture, Japan.

Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images

Among enthusiasts of Japanese performance cars, no list of greatest rides would be complete without mentioning the Nissan Skyline, in particular its GT-R variant. Popular with the "drifting" crowd, the GTR nonetheless went on indefinite hiatus in 2002.

Nissan unveiled one truly "conceptual" concept of a re-imagined GT-R in 2001, but it was a later concept attempt in 2005, the GTR-Proto, that would eventually see life as a production vehicle. The new GT-R, minus the "Skyline" moniker, went on sale in Japan in 2007 and in the United States the following year, followed later by other world markets.

With original performance of 485 horsepower, 434 foot-pounds of torque and a 193-mile per hour (310.6-kilometer per hour) top speed, the GTR delivered world-class supercar performance for about $80,000. (Performance numbers later improved as both Nissan and aftermarket tuners found ways to free-up and bolt-on horsepower.) Affectionately known as "Godzilla," the GT-R still isn't what you'd call easily accessible to Joe Lunchpail. But it's a much more believable aspiration for working stiffs than the GTR's six-figure competitors from Europe.

So there you have it -- 10 examples of proof that automotive designers' and cool car enthusiasts' dreams can and do come true. For lots more articles, photos and other information about concept vehicles, follow the links on the next page.