1988 Nissan Pulsar Reviews

1988 Nissan Pulsar NX SE 1.8 CA18DE DOHC from North America

Model year1988
Year of manufacture1987
First year of ownership2011
Most recent year of ownership2011
Engine and transmission 1.8 CA18DE DOHC Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired105600 miles
Most recent distance106700 miles
Previous carNissan Sentra

Summary:

Retro- cool 80's car

Faults:

Crank angle sensor needed replacing.

Power steering rack leaks.

Dashboard has cracks.

Small leak around passengers side weatherstripping.

General Comments:

This car is retro cool, with T-Tops and everything. My wife and I bought it off eBay on a whim. As you would expect (and I did to an extent), it's going to have more problems than you thought. It ran poorly until the 14 year old timing belt was replaced (costly, but didn't want to take it on myself). It runs well now, and it is really fun to drive.

It has plenty of power for an older car. It has some small rust spots that I am fixing, and I plan to repaint it.

The T-Tops make it like a convertible, and it gets looks from everyone, as few people remember these cars. My wife loves driving it around town as well. It is basically a two seater, as the back seat is so small no one bigger than my 10 year old can sit back there.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd September, 2011

1988 Nissan Pulsar Vector GX 1.8 EFI from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2007
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 1.8 EFI Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired161250 kilometres
Most recent distance175985 kilometres

Summary:

A great car, in spite of its problems

Faults:

Rust throughout the car, especially in the roof, bonnet, and possibly the rear chassis.

Alternator repeatedly drained the battery, partially due to the repair shop not checking the alternator function, despite being asked to.

Metallic paint fading badly on the bonnet, and doing little better on the rest of the car.

Brakes never worked properly.

Front left wheel out of alignment, causing vibration over about 105km/h.

Leak under back seat (possibly rust) filled the spare wheel well and back seat floor with water.

Oil hose broke, spraying oil all over the engine. Some smoke from exhaust pipe heating up oil, but no fire started.

Heater hose broke, but car ran well if it was kept filled up with water until it could be fixed.

Oil leak slowly drains oil.

Fuel gauge inaccurate.

Heater very poor.

Other minor wear and tear issues associated with a 21-year-old car.

General Comments:

Despite its problems, I love this car. Before I got it, it had sat in a field for more than a year, and before that the owner had not looked after it all that well. I put most of its problems down to this neglect. But it keeps on going.

The air conditioner is the best I've ever come across, the car is roomy in the front seats (not so much in the back), and is quite comfortable. It is also very nice to drive.

The car is also surprisingly quick for an older, small car with an automatic transmission. But it isn't particularly fuel efficient for a car of its size either, I find it extremely difficult to average less than 10 l/100 km, even when driven carefully and avoiding traffic, and can go as bad as 12 l/100 km when driven sportily or in traffic.

Sadly, because of the rust problem, and the fact that last year it went through A$1,000 in repairs (but $350 to a repairer that did not do their job properly and refused to refund the money), I will be getting rid of this car soon. It will be sadly missed.

My advice to anyone thinking of buying this car is to buy one that has been cared for. Mine was not, and it has deteriorated rapidly. But the fact that I still see many of these driving around, makes me sure that if mine had been looked after, it would have run almost forever.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st May, 2009

1988 Nissan Pulsar GXE 1.8 from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2000
Engine and transmission 1.8 Manual
Performance marks 3 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 3 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 3 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
3.6 / 10
Distance when acquired120000 kilometres
Most recent distance200000 kilometres
Previous carNissan Bluebird

Summary:

OK first attempt at an EFI small car

Faults:

I have constant problems with overheating, and the fan kicks on at strange times, so I want to bypass it completely (to have on constantly, I live in a hot environment), but cannot figure out how its currently wired. Looks like a thermo sensor tells it it's, hot and kicks in the fan at a specific point. Been told to bridge this sensor out onto the negative on the car. Anyone help?

General Comments:

It's OK, overheats, primitive EFI, big power band in 3rd & 4th, handles poor in the wet and with weight in it.

The suspension sags, and the exhaust and sump sit too low.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd October, 2007

Average review marks: 6.6 / 10, based on 13 reviews