Why The Nissan 200SX Is One Of The Most Underrated Tuner Cars Out There

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Honda Civic Type R? Volkswagen Golf GTI? Pshhh

One prime example of an underwhelming car from the 90s that could be made epic through the use of a talented tuner is the Nissan 200SX. Stock from the factory the top trim 1995 200SX SE-R came with 140 horsepower, hardly enough to register a change in pulse when the accelerator was teased. Underpinned by Nissan's S platform on which the Silvia was based, the 200 SX was capable of much more, and those who fulfilled that ability were rarely disappointed.

Matt Farah decided to spend a sunny Southern California day with Martin and his SR20-swapped 200SX. With its intake kept pressurized by a small turbocharger optimized for torque and response, this 200SX starts making boost at 1,100 RPM, which is coincidentally also where it idles.

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With close to 300 wheel horsepower going to the front of this lightweight coupe, it gets off the line with plenty of enthusiasm. As Farah points out, the blow-off valve makes a hissing sound as the driver lets off the throttle, adding an experience that we doubt owners of the newer Sentra Nismo will get. Truly mimicking a Nismo variant requires major suspension modifications, which is exactly what this 200SX gets. The package is rounded off by a short throw shifter, allowing this 2,200-pound machine to hit the track and do some damage. The only complaint? A steering rack that's not as quick as Farah would like for comfort on a track day. Hopefully Nissan will remedy that if it ever makes a sequel to rival the MX-5.

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