Throughout the years, we've done our fair share of features on the 240SX platform. Many of them were drift cars, show cars...whatever classes you want to put them in, we've done it. What most of them had in common was that they were all very visually appealing. There are so many aesthetic parts available for the chassis that it's almost impossible to find a modified S14 that didn't have major modifications to the body. Being one of the more popular platforms to build, also means that people often times catered more to the exterior just because they wanted to be different and stand out in a crowd of other Nissan coupes. Rarely do 240SX owners devote all their attention to everything except the exterior. Murray Hersh didn't totally neglect the outside of his car; he just doesn't feel the need to do anything crazy to it. He's kept the body in great shape, has even repainted his coupe a Copper Red Mica hue and added some Japanese-spec Silvia badges-but that's it. All his love and devotion lies within the body of his 1998 Nissan 240SX. When you look past the otherwise stock body, prepare to have your mind blown. Murray's Nissan wears the cloak of an S14, but bears a heart that is all Skyline RB26.
"When I was in college a few years ago I had a '95 240SX with an older RB20DET swap. I was a poor college kid so the car wasn't very clean or refined, and I knew the platform could do so much more. After I graduated and finally got a good job, I started to make a decent amount of money so I decided to build something I always wanted that I couldn't afford while in school; which was a RB26-powered S14," Murray explains.
Murray was finally at a stage in his life when he was able to build a project that he longed for since his college days. Call it "being at the right place at the right time", or pure luck, but he was able to not only find himself a clean S14 chassis, but one that already had the heart transplant he had planned. User "Skyline King", from a local Internet forum that Murray perused, had a GT-R swapped S14 for sale that was a perfect starting point for his dream build. "Honestly, I didn't have much to do with the RB26 swap because it was already done. Everything else was all me though. I was responsible for the majority of the electronics, some changes to the driveline and almost all of the chassis work. I probably have over two hundred man-hours in the car and that was not including any of the original swap work," he says.
For all the plethora of enhancements this Skyline motor sees, Murray claims that the most unique aspects of his build are in the electronics. He probably says this because he's a software engineer by trade but his claims don't go unwarranted. While we will never know how he came up with it, he states that he pioneered the idea to run GM LSX-based ignition coils on an RB platform. LSX coils have always been a popular ignition component to use for any application, Murray was just able to get them to work, and work correctly on an RB motor. He also adds, "Another cool electronic feature I created was an RFID-based (Radio Frequency Identification) security system that is 'spidered' into the EFI harness. The system won't allow the ECU to run until an RFID card in my wallet is scanned over the center console-crazy but totally true!"
The electrical innovations are definitely refreshing but shouldn't overshadow the work that's been completed on the motor itself. The stock twin turbines have been replaced by a singular, larger Precision 6262 ball-bearing unit mounted to a T4 turbo manifold designed specifically for left-hand drive applications. All essential piping has been upgraded with custom-fabricated pieces and fuel delivery is improved via twin Walbro fuel pumps, which then injects E85 (Ethanol and gasoline) fuel into the combustion chamber using 1000cc Delphi fuel injectors. The near 600 wheel horsepower is sent to the pavement through a hybrid Z32/RB25 transmission and HKS GD Pro twin-disk clutch upgrade.
"The original R34 GT-T differential had a blown VLSD and was hurting the car on the track so I ended up having to swap to a Silvia S15 Helical LSD with larger aftermarket axles to ensure better performance. I also started out with a GT4067 turbo that was just too big for what I set-up the car for. I switched to the 6262 unit because it was more reasonable. It didn't make as much power as the previous one but I really wanted to keep the car balanced."
"I think above all, the best feature of this entire build has to be its multi-faceted nature. It's very simple on the outside but it can do it all. It's not just a street cruiser you take to the ice cream stand and car shows. It's not just a drag queen that only goes in a straight line and can live for only a few passes. It's also not just a road race monster that can only perform while turning. I feel that my S14 is the epitome of the jack-of-all-trades. It's a true street machine that can take home trophies at car shows, click off some 10-second quarter-mile passes, and on the way home, I can stop by a track like Road America for a road race event." The best all-around performer? All signs point to 'yes'.
1998 Nissan 240SX
Owner Murray Hersh
Hometown Whitefish Bay, WI
Occupation Embedded Software Engineer
Engine 1997 2.6L NISSAN RB26DETT; ARP head studs; Tomei head gasket and oil restrictor; ATI RB26 engine dampener; (2X) Walbro 255LPH fuel pump; Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator; Godspeed 10.5mm fuel rail; Delphi 1000cc fuel injectors w/custom machined caps for RB26; -6 AN stainless fuel lines; KRC stainless fuel filter; E85 fuel; Custom 3.5" stainless steel exhaust; NGK BPCR7ES spark plugs; MSD custom fit spark plug wires; Retro-fitted GM LS2 Corvette ignition coils interfaced for AEM EMS; Precision ceramic ball bearing 6262 turbocharger; GReddy T4 turbo manifold for lefthand drive application, timing belt and oil filter relocation kit; Custom 3" downpipe, chargepipe and intercooler piping; K&N air and oil filter; TiAL 50mm blow-off valve and 40mm wastegate; BMPC front-mount intercooler; Nissan R33 RB26 oil pan modified for rear-wheel drive; B&M oil cooler; Koyo radiator; Flex-a-Lite dual 12" radiator fans; Polished aluminum intake manifold, valve covers, upper timing cover and Tomei coil cover
Power 594WHP/499LB-FT TQ
Drivetrain Hybrid Z32/RB25 transmission; S15 Helical LSD and output shafts; Custom A-1 custom driveshaft; Driveshaft Shop Level 2.3 axles; HKS GD Pro twin-disk clutch and GD Pro flywheel; Xcessive Manufacturing VG shifter relocation and short throw shifter; GM/Pennzoil Syncromesh transmission fluid; Complete R34 GT-T rear subframe
Engine Management AEM Electronic Boost Solenoid, Series 1 EMS, and wideband o2 sensor; STRI Digital Stepper boost, fuel pressure and oil pressure gauges
Footwork & Chassis TEIN Flex coilovers; Progress front and rear adjustable sway bars; Heim joints all-around; ARC front strut bar; Battle Version rear camber control arms; Custom extended steering column by Jim Schmittinger
Brakes Wilwood Forged Superlight 4-pot front brake calipers, B-compound race pad, brake lines, and 13" SRP drilled/slotted front brake rotors; Nissan Z32 rear brake calipers and rotors; Hawk HP+ rear brake pads
Wheels & tires 18x8.5" Rota Torque +25 offset; 255/35-18 Dunlop Z1 Starspec (Front); 18x9.5" Rota Torque +20 offset; 275/35-18 Dunlop Z1 Starspec (Rear); McGard Spline Drive lug nuts
Exterior Copper Red Mica DuPont PPG paint; Navan JDM S14 rear wing; Rolled front and rear fenders; JDM Silvia badges
Interior RJS 5-point safety harness (Driver); Schroth Ralleye 4 ASM safety harness (Passenger); RAAMMat BXT with Ensolite sound deadeners; custom rollcage
Thanks you Jim Schmittinger - couldn't have kept up with the maintenance and custom work if it weren't for good friends; Clocks Off Racing - great work on the cage, and thanks for all the late nights helping with the small stuff!; my wife - she has been very patient throughout all this. Love ya babe!