1991 Nissan 200SX 1.8 turbo petrol from UK and Ireland


Amazing performance and cheap to buy


Milage counter clock has stopped counting. Replacement from the dealer is expensive, but picked one up from a breakers for 1000% cheaper.

General Comments:

Seriously fun car to drive.

Very smooth to drive and on the pick up.

When the Turbo comes in at around 3000rpm you sure know it. Both from the noise of the Turbo starting and by the fact of being pushed back in the seat.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd May, 2001

1991 Nissan 200SX 1.8 turbo petrol from UK and Ireland


Engine is making a BAD ticking/knocking noise. Happens only when I try and maintain a constant speed. Only above 2000 rpm.

Have been told by Norris Designs over the phone, i.e. they haven't heard it, that it is the big end bearings, although I went to a Nissan dealer for a diagnosis, they said it sounds 'top endy', but without a full strip they can't say for certain.

Have been to a knowledgable friend who says that big end problems make the most noise under acceleration and when revving the throttle. However my noise doesn't appear under acceleration, I can accelerate all the way to 100mph without hearing noise and with plenty of power just like before the noise appeared. When I back off completely i.e. foot off the accelerator, the noise isn't there, it only happens when I try and maintain a constant speed with the engine above 2000 rpm, so I have been driving around at no faster than 35-40 mph which is about 2000 rpm in fifth.

Norris Designs said that if it is the big end, then it is cheaper if I replace the engine than rebuild it.

I figure if it is big end, then I need new engine so any damage I cause by using the car doesn't matter.

Anyone got any thoughts?

Anyone got much personal experience with working on them that might know what it is?

Anyone know of a 200SX club in UK? I know of Swedish and Australian clubs and also of 240SX US club, no help.

Sorry to use carsurvey like this but I am desperate.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th April, 2001

29th Apr 2001, 14:42

I've had two 200SX's, both '89s. In both cases, at around 70k miles I started to hear a rattling noise which sounded like an noisy exhaust problem which resonated at 3000rpm. It got progressively worse on my first one (got rid of the second one quickly!) and eventually the oil light came on. Engine was out on the table and a very sick big end was presented to me. The mechanic told me this happens to an awful lot of the 1.8 engines and said the 3000rpm rattle is the sign. I was disgusted, as I'd treated it with kid gloves (3000 mile fully synthetic oil changes).

From what you've described, it doesn't sound like the big end (though I'm no expert). If it is, then yes, you'd be better of putting a new engine is as I faced the same issue. Big end is expensive, although you might be able to get the damaged one reground and fitted with oversize bearings if the damage wasn't too bad...

Cars, eh! Can't live with them, can't live without them.


1991 Nissan 200SX 1.8 turbo petrol from UK and Ireland


Get a good one and you will LOVE it


Prematurely worn tyres (due to bad tracking).

Warped front discs.

Misc. engine problems (too many to list and I don't have the mechanics sheet handy).

Injector failed.

Turbo may be on the way out - crack noticed by the mechanic, temporarily repaired by a turbo mechanic.

The car is running lean, fixed by changing HT lead plugs.

Group A spec fuel pump incorrectly fitted by a shoddy mechanic, causing a silicon seal to corrode into the petrol tank and almost kill the engine.

Intercooler pipe seems to have come loose - low boost power and a large amount of air blasting under the bonnet on throttle.

General Comments:

Well you've probably just read the comments regarding what's gone wrong with the car - let me briefly explain. I bought the car with 105k miles on the clock in August 2000 after not really looking around enough. It had a few bodywork defects (patches of rust here and there), a bit of a worn drivers seat, but overall was OK. Then the hidden problems emerged.

First trip to the mechanics for a major service when it started making all sorts of odd noises set me back around £800. Since then, almost all the recurring problems have been fixed, but unfortunately due to a rather laid back mechanic who seems to specialise in Citroen BX's all day misfitting my fuel pump, it's not quite back on the road.

So, how does it drive? Absolutely fantastic. I've fitted an HKS Hiper Muffler exhaust and some uprated suspension which has dropped it a tiny bit (warning: exhaust hangs down, even as standard - grounds on some bumps / lanes) and made it about 30% stiffer. Has made a nice difference. Standard wheels and tyres on the car and it handles so sweetly and has great grip.. in the dry..

Been taking it easy as it's my first rear wheel drive car but I've already had some interesting experiences in the wet. Needless to say, I'm still able to write this report as it's extremely controllable when the rear starts to let go!

I'm looking forward to getting the car back in the next couple of days from the garage, and spending large amounts of time driving the beast in the (hopefully warm) coming months.

If you are considering one of these cars, or just want to know how they stack up against the competition, allow me to help. Good condition cars can be found cheaply, and give good reliability. They are fast, comfortable and very pleasant to own. A range of people seem to suggest the car looks old, like it should be driven by retired old people (who I have nothing against provided they aren't on the same country lane as me) but it's a moot point.

Besides, I love just blipping the throttle with this exhaust on now!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st April, 2001

27th May 2001, 17:53

Yes, well done...