3rd Apr 2003, 16:54

I drive a Nissan Primera Si nothing compared to the style and performance of the GT, but with a small family I wanted something cheap and reliable. All my friends laughed when I bought the car as they think that Nissans are for the elderly or taxi drivers. They all drive Golf GTi's, Ford RS Turbos and Vauxhalls and all I can say is I have never known so many faults on other makes of vechiles... they are constantly replacing and repairing parts that should last longer. The only thing I replace on my car is the usual items every full service and the odd new tyres and brakes which are only from wear and tear. The car is very comfortable to drive and the room is great for the weekly shopping and the days out with the kids. Handling is excellent around corners in all weather with the standard 15" alloys and Dunlop Tyres. I find 0-60MPH is very slow probably down to the fact that it's a heavy car for a 1.6L engine.

I read somewhere before purchasing the car that most owners recommend the 1.8 Sport. If I had to give this car a mark out of ten then I would give it an eleven. My dream is to own a Nissan Skyline GT-R when the time is right.

10th Aug 2003, 08:27

I run a 99 GT LE with the 205/50 16 tyres. Great grip, but the ride was a bit too harsh and noisy on the original fitted tyres (Michelin Pilot MXV), so at 30k I changed to Michelin Pilot Primacy's which are more comfortable and noticeably quieter. Now long runs are much less tiring. The handling is still excellent. If you put wider wheels on you'd better check the turning angles if no spacers are used - may get rubbing on full lock. The turning circle on mine is not good. Otherwise I love it!

24th Oct 2003, 19:42

I have a 1998 Nissan Primera P11 1800 for just over two years and I am truly pleased with it. It was imported to Jamaica from Japan and looks very much like a BMW. Recently, I installed a set of 16" OZ rims and have been getting a lot of offer$ and good comments.

I have installed a Pioneer Audio Video system with DVD and MP3 player. That adds more pleasure to the ride. I am also in the process of installing a bigger colored disc router just to show off the caliper through the rims. I love this car very much especially since it is not a gas guzzler. I find that caring the car gives a much better performance I change the oil pretty regularly and do undercarriage and engine wash to keep it looking in tip-top shape.

I am really tempted to convert it to a stick shift and install some turbo stuff, but my wife would probably kill me for doing so. I really love this car and am glad I bought it. I love it so much so that I don't allow my wife to drive it anymore. She just got a Honda Torneo which is more her type of car. You should get one!

30th Sep 2010, 05:17

Looking back, I can’t complain too much about this car.

It’s a 1998 Primera 2.0 SLX automatic saloon. It had 77,000 on the clock when I bought it 3 years ago, it now has 121,000. It cost £1350.

The good stuff:

It is a competent vehicle. I really wanted a SRI hatchback, but couldn’t find one quickly enough when my dirt cheap Megane died.

It is comfortable, quiet, reliable, and well screwed together.

It does handle well, but does seem particular to brands of tyres. Very forgiving though, credit to the car.

The brakes are good, as they should be given that its substantial discs all round, and proper Bosch ABS. I wouldn’t say they give you much confidence for truly late braking.

The car is now 12 years old, and only has the slightest bits of corrosion on it.

It still has the original exhaust on it, which has just started to deteriorate.

The not so good stuff:

The performance is so-so for a 115 BHP automatic, and nothing really happens until 4500, another typical Japanese multi valve. With it being an automatic, there always seems to be a sweet spot when it accelerates much better given a certain set of conditions than others. It will just about scrape 116 mph (on a private road!) on the TomTom.

The fuel economy isn’t good, and even being really careful, it’s difficult to get it above 34 mpg. Any town work, and I am lucky to see 30 mpg.

The turning circle is poor, and even now I am still forgetting to put enough lock on when manoeuvring.

Gauging the length of the car is difficult, surprising with it being a saloon, I could park my Senator to within 3 inches.

The original stereo failed comprehensively, blowing a multitude of fuses, a second hand Nissan one did the same thing 3 months later. Now it’s a decent Sony system with CD changer. The electrics are right at the edge, fitting a tow bar with the electrics had me blowing fuses left right and centre.

The parts are borderline extortionate at the dealers, and I can get some of them at cost, but can be found elsewhere.

The front suspension is the car’s bete noir. The upper link bushes go quickly, and make a real thump when manoeuvring at slow speed over bumps. Replacements are cheap enough, and quick enough to fit. Poly bushes are available at some cost - £100, which I am guessing, help to eliminate this problem. The lower arms have also just recently gone, and that was a more troublesome job than it should have been. The king pin bearings have been replaced. Note get the bearing numbers from the web and just buy the special seals from the dealers - £15 each. The front suspension is still making loud thump noises over our rapidly deteriorating roads. Chasing down this front suspension knocking now stands me in at £270 in parts alone…. And it’s still doing it…