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Nissan 240SX - The Road Warrior

Flat Black, Sr20 Powered, And Virtually Undetectable

David Luong
Sep 19, 2006 SHARE
0609_turp_5z+nissan_240sx+left_front_view Photo 1/1   |   Nissan 240SX - The Road Warrior

Like Mad Max before him, Ryan Rust finds himself wandering the land alone, always on the lookout for danger. However, in Rust's case the land in question is not the post-apocalypse Australian outback - it's only northern California, and the only danger is that he'll shatter a few egos as he blasts by those who underestimate his stealth ride.

Bone stock, the 1989-1994 S13-chassis Nissan 240SX is no showstopper. The factory 2.4-liter KA24DE engine produces decent torque for daily driving, but raw power and acceleration is not part of the recipe. Also, the factory brakes, suspension and tires were better for commuting than track days - so you see why the 240SX never set the world on fire back in the early 1990's. But, the little Nissan that could has two important things going for it: a rear-wheel drive setup and the SR20DET engine.

As opposed to a front-wheel drive car, where two wheels are responsible for both turning and putting down power, rear-wheel drive cars can easily kick the tail out with liberal use of the right pedal. Now, thanks to the massive popularity of Japan-sourced SR20DET engines and the current spotlight on drifting, the 240SX has been given a second wind. With a 2.0-liter SR20DET engine on board, pulled from a former JDM Nissan Silvia, the 240SX becomes, well, fast. The factory turbocharged engine begs to be opened up and rewards proper modifications with big power numbers. Plus, since the 240SX is the exact same chassis as the Silvia, just with the steering wheel on the wrong side, swapping an SR20DET engine into a 240SX is no problem.

The swap is so easy and rewarding that the SR20-swapped Nissan 240SX is practically carrying the grassroots-drifting scene on its back. In addition to the legions of shade-tree mechanics who have mastered the art of swapping an SR20, the current drifting craze has also encouraged aftermarket manufacturers to offer new suspension parts, bodywork, and engine pieces for the 240SX. Unfortunately, for would-be Nissan owners, there's so much attention on the 240SX right now that the price for clean specimens is climbing daily. Like the Supra and RX-7 before it, the 240SX has been shoved into the spotlight and everybody's looking at it - including fad followers with cash to burn and, worst of all, police officers with ticket quotas to meet.

For Rust, the path to enjoying a tuned S13 lay in the art of stealth. Having built his Nissan in one fell swoop, Rust's 1989 240SX is a lesson in understated style. The bodywork is low and sleek with the touch of a D1 racer thrown into the mix. The Signal Auto full bodykit with front wide fenders and rear blister fenders is covered in an ultra-smooth coat of flat black paint by Century Auto Body - giving the Nissan the same cold business ethic as a stealth fighter. Matched with bronze 17x8-inch front and 17x9-inch rear Weds Sport SA-90 wheels and Hankook rubber, the flat black paint mixes in the Seibon carbon fiber hood and JDM Kouki rear taillights. This Nissan even features a custom front under diffuser and rear muffler cover, thanks to a chance encounter with a freeway tire chunk that spontaneously combusted on the tailpipe. There is no gaudy, flashy paint scheme, no chromed graphics, and no neon lights; this 240SX is all business and speed - no bullshit. With the police on the lookout for tuned 240SXs nowadays, it's best not to flash immediately onto their visual radar.

For real speed freaks, the true show is going on under the hood of Rust's Nissan. If you like clean, professional installs, then the work by Under Pressure Fabrication & Distribution (UPFD) will make you scream. A JDM red-top SR20DET engine from an S13-chassis Silvia has been given a new home in Rust's project, and looks every bit like it came that way from Nissan. The SR20's bottom end remains stock, but up top Port Flow Design assembled the head with HKS Step III 272-degree camshafts and an HKS Step III head system.

Outside, the T25 turbocharger remains stock, but breathes in through an HKS Racing Suction intake system and blasts out of a JIC Magic downpipe and an HKS Hi-Power exhaust system. An HKS R-Type front-mount intercooler with custom UPFD piping was mounted at a slight angle in order to avoid choking off airflow to the Koyo aluminum racing-radiator. Fed by an HKS fuel rail, HKS 740cc fuel injectors feed the sting from the HKS Twin Power ignition system. With the boost level controlled by an HKS EVC, UPFD tuned the AEM standalone EMS to run on 14psi of pressure. With an upgraded HKS turbocharger already in hand, Rust plans to boost between 17-20psi on 91-octane pump gas. The cockpit mounted A'PEXi S-AFCII piggyback is currently rigged up only to help display engine parameters and throttle position.

Holding down that extra power with an Exedy Hyper Single clutch kit, Rust lays down twin rubber strips with a JDM S13 Silvia viscous limited slip differential. An LSD is a necessity for harnessing this much newfound power and doesn't require the use of later model five-lug hubs. Rust made the switch over to the hubs in order to fit his 240SX with the effective and relatively cost-effective Nissan 300ZX Twin-Turbo front-brake calipers. Fixed four-piston beauties, the 300ZX front brakes use stainless-steel-braided brake lines to clamp down on Project Mu brake rotors and pads. Dropped slightly onto fully adjustable TEIN Flex coil-overs, this S13 is ready to go, stop, and turn with the best of modern machinery.

On the inside, Rust continued his quest for no-nonsense, all-business equipment. Yonaka racing seats sit just forward of the UPFD four-point roll cage, which ties into a rear hatch area that has been gutted and then covered in Dynamat Xtreme sound deadening material. Across the dashboard Rust rocks an A'PEXi 11,000 rpm tachometer and a host of Defi-Link Meter BF gauges. Keeping true to the stealth theme, the BF gauges use a special blacked-out face, only appearing readable when the car is turned on.

Although the oh-so-nostalgic electric seatbelts remain, the stock radio and air-conditioning were dumped, with the S-AFCII and HKS EVC now resting in their place. You know you're serious about performance when you forego radio and air-conditioning. Further custom mounting was carried out by UPFD for the gauge playback Defi-Link Control Unit II, coil-over adjusting EDFC dampening force controller, and the center console peeking AEM UEGO air/fuel ratio gauge. With everything he needs to keep going fast within easy reach and view, Rust has succeeded in creating a work of functional art. Plus, with everything so professionally installed, Rust has only to focus on the road ahead of him.

So, the next time something blasts by you and sinks into the darkness, try to get a good look. Remember, Rust and his stealthy turbo S13 won't be that easy to spot a second time, unless he's giving you a run for your money.

EngineBase Engine: Jdm Silvia S13 Sr20detHks Step Iii Camshafts (272o Duration)Hks Step Iii Head SystemCylinder Head Assembled By PortflowGreddy Oil PanJic Magic DownpipeHks Hi-Power Exhaust Hks Ssqv Blow-Off ValveHks Racing Suction IntakeHks R-Type Front Mount IntercoolerGreddy Water And Alternator PulleysPower Enterprise Engine BeltsBdl Industries Fuel FilterHks Fuel RailAem Fuel Pressure RegulatorHks 740cc Fuel InjectorsUpfd Custom Power Steering Fluid ReservoirHks Twin Power Ignition SystemUpfd Oil Cooler KitKoyo Aluminum RadiatorUpfd Custom Radiator Hard PipingGreddy Air Diversion PanelBdl Radiator CapBaker Precision High Performance BatteryHks 2 Mm Head GasketAem Standalone Ems Tuned By Upfd14psi Boost Pressure, 91 Octane FuelA'pexi S-Afcii And Hks Evc Custom MountedIn Stock Head Unit LocationHks Oil Cap

TransmissionExedy Hyper Single Clutch KitJdm S13 Viscous LsdTorco Gear Oil

SuspensionTein Flex Coil-Over Suspension W/ Edfc ControllerTanabe Chrom-Moly SwaybarsTanabe Tower BarsTein Tie-Rod Ends5-Lug ConversionNissan 300zx Twin-Turbo Brake CalipersProject Mu Brake RotorsProject Mu Brake PadsStainless-Steel-Braided Brake Lines

Wheels & TiresWeds Sport Sa-90 Wheels 17x8 Front, 17x9 RearHankook Ventus Sport K104225/35-17 Front, 245/35-17 Rear Tires

ExteriorFlat Black PaintSignal Auto S13 BodykitSeibon Carbon Fiber HoodSignal Auto Front/Rear Wide Fenders, Modified By UpfdUpfd Front Undertray/Diffuser Upfd Custom Muffler ShieldJdm Kouki Rear Taillights

InteriorYonaka Racing SeatsUpfd 4-Point RollcageDefi-Link Meter Bf-Series:Boost, Egt, Oil Pressure, And Water Temperature Gauges Custom Dash Mounted Defi-Link Control Unit Ii And Edfc ControllerCustom Center Console Mounted Aem Air/Fuel Ratio GaugeA'pexi TachometerDynamat Xtreme Covered Rear Hatch AreaSparco Shift Knob

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Sources

AEM
Hawthorne, CA 90250
800-992-3000
http://www.aempower.com
Technosquare
Torrance, CA
http://www.technosquareinc.com
HKS USA
Los Angeles, CA 90061
310-491-3300
http://www.hksusa.com
A'PEXi
Orange, CA 92868
714-685-5700
http://www.apexi-usa.com
GReddy
Irvine, CA 92618
949-588-8300
http://www.greddy.com
Exedy
Belleville, MI 48111
800-346-6091
http://www.exedyusa.com
Tein
562-861-9161
www.tein.com
By David Luong
22 Articles

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