Jump to content

Mid 90's Japanese Sports Cars


Recommended Posts

When the Datsun 240zx came out in the seventies it was an immediate world-beater for quality and price. The 260 continued in the same vein and then the 300 replaced it. Still sporty and solid, the targa roof is a must, and seven grand will get you a good one.

 

I do really like the 300's, I think they look awesome, and you can pick up some great deals on them. Twin Turbo's and all.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Their are some nice looking RX8`s around the 4-5k mark But you could get a very nice RX7 for half that.

 

 

Or

 

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201110381867838/sort/priceasc/usedcars/price-to/7000/model/integra/make/honda/postcode/bh105ab/page/3/radius/1500?logcode=p

 

Best front drive car, Ive ever owned.

Edited by DrZuess1979 the 2nd
Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm looking at picking one up, but haven't decided which. I'm looking at spending up to £7k, and was wondering if people had any tips/recommendations about buying one, what car to go for, problems with imports etc. I want one stock, as I'm not looking to 'chav' it up, just want a great fun 90's Jap car.

 

upto 7k will get you a lot, but finding a standard minter for a mid '90's jap motor is the hard part, lots of chavved up examples about.

 

5k will get you a nice Integra DC2, reliable, comfty and vt-ec yo! the MX-5, great drive if a little underpowered and not a lot of hassle to own.

 

Rx7's are a minefield to buy/maintain but if your shrewd enough and dont mind the fuel consumption + running costs then they're amazing weapons and look great (in black) ReWorx are also in portsmouth so there are some decent rx7 knowledge on the southcoast.

 

3000gt/gto's are barges and i cant stand the FTO either so im a little blinkered on these, as with the 300zx (despite wanting one for years) i could never find a decent manual example and I knew that i could always get better for the same money which brings me onto the 200sx; I've always found nissans to have quite high running costs (especially if fettled with) but offer the best selection of high powered rwd motors. I personally cant wait for the uk market for S15's to settle, http://www.pistonheads.com/sales/2042890.htm

 

Toyota's have the Celica, Mr2 and the Supra, of the models sold new in the UK the Celica GT4 is the pick, the others are too weedy, from the import stable a Manual Turbo Supra is a hoot and Mr2 Turbo's from 94 onwards (revision3) are the ones to look for.

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you can get a good one definitely go for the Integra. They're generally regarded as the best front wheel drive car ever made and have bomb-proof reliability. If you've heard one of those things at 9000 revs that's reason enough to buy one on it's own!

Link to post
Share on other sites
If you can get a good one definitely go for the Integra. They're generally regarded as the best front wheel drive car ever made and have bomb-proof reliability. If you've heard one of those things at 9000 revs that's reason enough to buy one on it's own!

 

from memory the DC2's the better performance but the DC5 is a lot nicer to own, much the same as the previous two incarnations of the civic type-r the older one is the better driver but the newer ones the better to own.

 

i've known people who've owned both and although i dislike fwd the DC5 is some machine.

Link to post
Share on other sites
from memory the DC2's the better performance but the DC5 is a lot nicer to own, much the same as the previous two incarnations of the civic type-r the older one is the better driver but the newer ones the better to own.

 

i've known people who've owned both and although i dislike fwd the DC5 is some machine.

 

I'd go for a late model DC2 like the one I picked out on eBay above.

 

!!tTZ4s!!20~$(KGrHqIOKjYEzmRmHvuZBN!ntmknWQ~~_12.JPG

 

!!tTZ3hg!m0~$(KGrHqQOKo4Ey+jC)80gBN!nq)),ng~~_12.JPG

Edited by Son of Bob
Link to post
Share on other sites

Had a DC2 for a while, completely brilliant and mental car, way beyond my abilities as a driver. Uncompromising and don't feel like a FWD car on the limit. Noisy, uncomfortable and drinks super at a scarily expensive rate.

 

If you're buying one check and double check for rust, especially rear arches as they are getting to the stage where most are starting to bubble. There are some slits in the leading edge of the arch which can open up if it's been driven hard and they're an absolute magnet for salt and road grime.

 

Would still have it but it made the missus car sick so it had to go

Link to post
Share on other sites
I'd prefer something with a bigger engine, RX7, 300ZX, Supra etc. An MX5 is a bit too girly...

My advice would be, don't. And I speak from experience. Sit down, and I'll tell you a story...

 

About six years ago, I got myself an imported RX7. I had wanted one for years. I used an extremely well-respected importer, renowned for getting mint condition cars. The car they sourced was immaculate. It was a '96 but had only 20,000 miles on it, everything was in perfect condition, 1 non-smoker owner from new, garaged every night, etc. It looked like it had come off the showroom floor. I had wanted one that was only 'mildly' modified (my insurance couldn't take anything more), so it was a fairly typical Stage 1 example - new filter kit, exhaust, etc - but no major mechanical changes. The reason I'm labouring this point is that there was nothing wrong with the car itself, so that can't be blamed for what was to follow.

 

It was essentially utterly unusable on UK roads. It didn't help that I lived in London, surrounded by speedbumps. The daily drive to work was a succession of first gear sprints of about 50 yards, then arse-scraping discomfort over the next speedbump, then repeat. But even on the odd occasion when I got to 'cut loose', it was so ludicrously over-specced for using on a road. I could put my foot down with the car dead straight, in 3rd gear, on a dry road, and the back end would start to step out. WOT in second or first was a maelstrom of tyre smoke. I was, to put not too fine a point on it, terrified of the bloody thing.

 

To complement this was fuel economy that sat happily at around 14mpg, dipping into single figures when angry. The drive from South London to Leeds (so virtually all motorway), and back again, cost £60. That was back when Shell V-Power (of course you can only put 'performance' fuel in there, or risk your engine detonating) was 99p/litre, god knows what the cost would be like nowadays.

 

Then you have to get it serviced or have some work done on it. Unless you know exactly what you are doing, don't even think about lifting the bonnet. There is no national dealer network for modified japtech. Instead, you'll find yourself driving a significant distance to one of the handful of specialists for that model of car (ironically, I had to drive to Portsmouth). When you get there, if you are *very* lucky, you will arrive at an anonymous industrial unit. That's if you're lucky. They're quite often based on farms (enjoy the drive down the track to get there), and are usually in the middle of nowhere. The reason this is important is that 'customer service' at these places involves them taking your keys and waving goodbye. Courtesy car? Don't make me laugh. You might get a lift to the local train station. See you in a few days. When you return, the bill is ordinarily eye-watering. I'm not saying these guys are cowboys, far from it, they are often very skilled and knowledgeable. But they operate in a different universe, where the primary goal is not a working, reliable mode of transport.

 

Which takes me onto the financial aspect. There are generally two types of people who own these sorts of cars. The first have stacks of cash and treat it very much as a plaything. The second are the rest of us who try and manage it on a budget. Everyone in the second category realises, sooner or later, that they can't. My running costs just for servicing and repairs (ie not including fuel, a full set of tyres, etc) was just shy of £5000. In 18 months. And that was 6 years ago.

 

Eventually a drunk driver in an uninsured car ploughed into the side of my car (whilst it was parked), and wrote it off. And, after the initial rage had settled in (and discounting the grief of the insurance company), I was actually relieved.

 

I now have a Skoda vRS. It costs peanuts to run and insure, gets me (literally) ten times as far on the same amount of fuel, can carry more than a single bag of shopping, is comfortable, reliable, and when I want to have a bit of fun and throw it around a bit, I can do so safe in the knowledge that it's not going to fling itself into the nearest hedge at the earliest opportunity.

 

My experience is by no means unusual. I have a friend who owned 2 Nissan GTRs at the same sort of time. The second one in particular was a monster, about 45k's worth in mint condition. He had very similar experiences. I remember him calling me almost in tears after, having taken his car in for a 'routine service', the 'specialist' had arbitrarily decided his turbos needed replacing and had disassembled his engine, leaving him with an unexpected 5 grand bill. On another occasion he took his R34 in to have a genuine Nismo bodykit fitted and painted (several thousand pounds worth of work), and got it back with muddy footprints on the dashboard. He rather astutely pointed out that you don't get that from your local BMW dealership. And they even give you a cup of tea. He finally got rid when he came to the conclusion he probably wasn't making the most out of a 500bhp car driving half an hour to work and back each day. He used to say that they were great cars to own - if you never actually *have* to drive a car, that is. I would agree wholeheartedly.

 

Long story short. If you want to get an imported Jap car, get one of the more 'sensible' normally aspirated ones, and make sure it is one that you can take to a normal dealer to get work done on it. Practically, something like an Integra is perfect. You will still get nowhere near using its full capabilities on a UK road, and it severely lessens the downsides. Even so, go into it with your eyes open. And whatever you do, stay well away from those fire-breathing, twin turbo behemoths, unless you literally have so much money you don't care. And another car to drive, when you just want to go somewhere (ie anywhere), and do something (ie anything) with the least amount of fuss possible.

Link to post
Share on other sites
My advice would be, don't. And I speak from experience. Sit down, and I'll tell you a story...

 

About six years ago, I got myself an imported RX7. I had wanted one for years. I used an extremely well-respected importer, renowned for getting mint condition cars. The car they sourced was immaculate. It was a '96 but had only 20,000 miles on it, everything was in perfect condition, 1 non-smoker owner from new, garaged every night, etc. It looked like it had come off the showroom floor. I had wanted one that was only 'mildly' modified (my insurance couldn't take anything more), so it was a fairly typical Stage 1 example - new filter kit, exhaust, etc - but no major mechanical changes. The reason I'm labouring this point is that there was nothing wrong with the car itself, so that can't be blamed for what was to follow.

 

It was essentially utterly unusable on UK roads. It didn't help that I lived in London, surrounded by speedbumps. The daily drive to work was a succession of first gear sprints of about 50 yards, then arse-scraping discomfort over the next speedbump, then repeat. But even on the odd occasion when I got to 'cut loose', it was so ludicrously over-specced for using on a road. I could put my foot down with the car dead straight, in 3rd gear, on a dry road, and the back end would start to step out. WOT in second or first was a maelstrom of tyre smoke. I was, to put not too fine a point on it, terrified of the bloody thing.

 

To complement this was fuel economy that sat happily at around 14mpg, dipping into single figures when angry. The drive from South London to Leeds (so virtually all motorway), and back again, cost £60. That was back when Shell V-Power (of course you can only put 'performance' fuel in there, or risk your engine detonating) was 99p/litre, god knows what the cost would be like nowadays.

 

Then you have to get it serviced or have some work done on it. Unless you know exactly what you are doing, don't even think about lifting the bonnet. There is no national dealer network for modified japtech. Instead, you'll find yourself driving a significant distance to one of the handful of specialists for that model of car (ironically, I had to drive to Portsmouth). When you get there, if you are *very* lucky, you will arrive at an anonymous industrial unit. That's if you're lucky. They're quite often based on farms (enjoy the drive down the track to get there), and are usually in the middle of nowhere. The reason this is important is that 'customer service' at these places involves them taking your keys and waving goodbye. Courtesy car? Don't make me laugh. You might get a lift to the local train station. See you in a few days. When you return, the bill is ordinarily eye-watering. I'm not saying these guys are cowboys, far from it, they are often very skilled and knowledgeable. But they operate in a different universe, where the primary goal is not a working, reliable mode of transport.

 

Which takes me onto the financial aspect. There are generally two types of people who own these sorts of cars. The first have stacks of cash and treat it very much as a plaything. The second are the rest of us who try and manage it on a budget. Everyone in the second category realises, sooner or later, that they can't. My running costs just for servicing and repairs (ie not including fuel, a full set of tyres, etc) was just shy of £5000. In 18 months. And that was 6 years ago.

 

Eventually a drunk driver in an uninsured car ploughed into the side of my car (whilst it was parked), and wrote it off. And, after the initial rage had settled in (and discounting the grief of the insurance company), I was actually relieved.

 

I now have a Skoda vRS. It costs peanuts to run and insure, gets me (literally) ten times as far on the same amount of fuel, can carry more than a single bag of shopping, is comfortable, reliable, and when I want to have a bit of fun and throw it around a bit, I can do so safe in the knowledge that it's not going to fling itself into the nearest hedge at the earliest opportunity.

 

My experience is by no means unusual. I have a friend who owned 2 Nissan GTRs at the same sort of time. The second one in particular was a monster, about 45k's worth in mint condition. He had very similar experiences. I remember him calling me almost in tears after, having taken his car in for a 'routine service', the 'specialist' had arbitrarily decided his turbos needed replacing and had disassembled his engine, leaving him with an unexpected 5 grand bill. On another occasion he took his R34 in to have a genuine Nismo bodykit fitted and painted (several thousand pounds worth of work), and got it back with muddy footprints on the dashboard. He rather astutely pointed out that you don't get that from your local BMW dealership. And they even give you a cup of tea. He finally got rid when he came to the conclusion he probably wasn't making the most out of a 500bhp car driving half an hour to work and back each day. He used to say that they were great cars to own - if you never actually *have* to drive a car, that is. I would agree wholeheartedly.

 

Long story short. If you want to get an imported Jap car, get one of the more 'sensible' normally aspirated ones, and make sure it is one that you can take to a normal dealer to get work done on it. Practically, something like an Integra is perfect. You will still get nowhere near using its full capabilities on a UK road, and it severely lessens the downsides. Even so, go into it with your eyes open. And whatever you do, stay well away from those fire-breathing, twin turbo behemoths, unless you literally have so much money you don't care. And another car to drive, when you just want to go somewhere (ie anywhere), and do something (ie anything) with the least amount of fuss possible.

 

Which is why a DC02 is the perfect compromise!

Link to post
Share on other sites
My advice would be, don't. And I speak from experience. Sit down, and I'll tell you a story...

 

About six years ago, I got myself an imported RX7. I had wanted one for years. I used an extremely well-respected importer, renowned for getting mint condition cars. The car they sourced was immaculate. It was a '96 but had only 20,000 miles on it, everything was in perfect condition, 1 non-smoker owner from new, garaged every night, etc. It looked like it had come off the showroom floor. I had wanted one that was only 'mildly' modified (my insurance couldn't take anything more), so it was a fairly typical Stage 1 example - new filter kit, exhaust, etc - but no major mechanical changes. The reason I'm labouring this point is that there was nothing wrong with the car itself, so that can't be blamed for what was to follow.

 

It was essentially utterly unusable on UK roads. It didn't help that I lived in London, surrounded by speedbumps. The daily drive to work was a succession of first gear sprints of about 50 yards, then arse-scraping discomfort over the next speedbump, then repeat. But even on the odd occasion when I got to 'cut loose', it was so ludicrously over-specced for using on a road. I could put my foot down with the car dead straight, in 3rd gear, on a dry road, and the back end would start to step out. WOT in second or first was a maelstrom of tyre smoke. I was, to put not too fine a point on it, terrified of the bloody thing.

 

To complement this was fuel economy that sat happily at around 14mpg, dipping into single figures when angry. The drive from South London to Leeds (so virtually all motorway), and back again, cost £60. That was back when Shell V-Power (of course you can only put 'performance' fuel in there, or risk your engine detonating) was 99p/litre, god knows what the cost would be like nowadays.

 

Then you have to get it serviced or have some work done on it. Unless you know exactly what you are doing, don't even think about lifting the bonnet. There is no national dealer network for modified japtech. Instead, you'll find yourself driving a significant distance to one of the handful of specialists for that model of car (ironically, I had to drive to Portsmouth). When you get there, if you are *very* lucky, you will arrive at an anonymous industrial unit. That's if you're lucky. They're quite often based on farms (enjoy the drive down the track to get there), and are usually in the middle of nowhere. The reason this is important is that 'customer service' at these places involves them taking your keys and waving goodbye. Courtesy car? Don't make me laugh. You might get a lift to the local train station. See you in a few days. When you return, the bill is ordinarily eye-watering. I'm not saying these guys are cowboys, far from it, they are often very skilled and knowledgeable. But they operate in a different universe, where the primary goal is not a working, reliable mode of transport.

 

Which takes me onto the financial aspect. There are generally two types of people who own these sorts of cars. The first have stacks of cash and treat it very much as a plaything. The second are the rest of us who try and manage it on a budget. Everyone in the second category realises, sooner or later, that they can't. My running costs just for servicing and repairs (ie not including fuel, a full set of tyres, etc) was just shy of £5000. In 18 months. And that was 6 years ago.

 

Eventually a drunk driver in an uninsured car ploughed into the side of my car (whilst it was parked), and wrote it off. And, after the initial rage had settled in (and discounting the grief of the insurance company), I was actually relieved.

 

I now have a Skoda vRS. It costs peanuts to run and insure, gets me (literally) ten times as far on the same amount of fuel, can carry more than a single bag of shopping, is comfortable, reliable, and when I want to have a bit of fun and throw it around a bit, I can do so safe in the knowledge that it's not going to fling itself into the nearest hedge at the earliest opportunity.

 

My experience is by no means unusual. I have a friend who owned 2 Nissan GTRs at the same sort of time. The second one in particular was a monster, about 45k's worth in mint condition. He had very similar experiences. I remember him calling me almost in tears after, having taken his car in for a 'routine service', the 'specialist' had arbitrarily decided his turbos needed replacing and had disassembled his engine, leaving him with an unexpected 5 grand bill. On another occasion he took his R34 in to have a genuine Nismo bodykit fitted and painted (several thousand pounds worth of work), and got it back with muddy footprints on the dashboard. He rather astutely pointed out that you don't get that from your local BMW dealership. And they even give you a cup of tea. He finally got rid when he came to the conclusion he probably wasn't making the most out of a 500bhp car driving half an hour to work and back each day. He used to say that they were great cars to own - if you never actually *have* to drive a car, that is. I would agree wholeheartedly.

 

Long story short. If you want to get an imported Jap car, get one of the more 'sensible' normally aspirated ones, and make sure it is one that you can take to a normal dealer to get work done on it. Practically, something like an Integra is perfect. You will still get nowhere near using its full capabilities on a UK road, and it severely lessens the downsides. Even so, go into it with your eyes open. And whatever you do, stay well away from those fire-breathing, twin turbo behemoths, unless you literally have so much money you don't care. And another car to drive, when you just want to go somewhere (ie anywhere), and do something (ie anything) with the least amount of fuss possible.

 

Crikey, thanks for that, I never realised that they were that bad to own. What a shame! I do like the look of the DC2 and DC5 Integra's though.

 

I'm looking around and if you don't mind a thirsty car (which I don't - I will only be using it as a weekend car) you can get good deals on a lot of powerful cars. For instance the 90's SL 500, a future classic you can pick up cheap, or an early 00's CLK 500.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 years later...

I had a Toyota Celica GT4 (a la Carlos Sainz) in the early nineties-what a car- only a Mini-Cooper in the early 70s compares. A real Jekyll and Hyde car, driven sensibly it was a lazy comfortable 2L, foot down and turbo cutting in-Wow, the number of fancy Mercs and BMWs that discovered they were slower than they thought was amazing.

The first time somebody wanted a traffic lights drag, I was doing over 40 at the other side of the junction while their wheels were still spinning.

That was a long time ago of course -early nineties. I'm twenty-five tears older and hopefully a lot wiser and much more sensible now (I actually obey speed limits) and you wouldn't dare do the speeds through France that my son and I did one holiday. Still can't really believe how quickly we got from Nantes to Paris. However it would probably seem slow now.

The biggest joke was that it was an 18 month old ex motability car- how you could be disabled and get in and out and drive one of those things beggars belief.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

View Terms of service (Terms of Use) and Privacy Policy (Privacy Policy) and Forum Guidelines ({Guidelines})