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80's/90's Nissan Appreciation Thread (Micra, Sunny, Primera etc)


DavidB
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I love these old Nissans, be it a K11 Micra or an N13 Sunny.

My first one was a gold, very early K10 I bought off an old woman who had had it since new.

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It was spotless, the lady gave it to her grandson who typically neglected it for a week and I bought it was a knocking bottom end, which turned out to be a clonking exhaust pipe. She was nearly in tears when she let it go (her husband was kind of pleading with her to let it go while she was signing the 80's version of the log book), but it evenutally went to live on the Isle Of Wight and apart from the last MOT being in 2016, I reckon it's still going. Thinking about it, nearly 10 years later, I wonder if the elderly couple are still going as well?

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Up next is this beast - owned by a local councillor since the early 90's, I always saw this being driven around for years and when I saw it up for sale I went for it - I got it for £250 in 2012 and I think I could have gone cheaper. I had just started a new job and I used to rock up into the car park with it.

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It was the first car I owned that went straight through the MOT, even though it was a bit rough externally. It was last MOT'd in 2018 and SORN'd in 2019.

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About the same time I spotted this locally on ebay and won for about £215. The N13 was really well built and comfy I thought, but slower than anything. The back seat folds down leaving the boot completely flat - I discovered this when I couldn't find a single hotel at 10pm and had to sleep in the back in a very cold March.

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The engine had a hesistation which was due to the troublesome Hitachi carbs these came with. I've never seen another one with electric windows and two doors, it was an LX, so it had electric everything. I say was as I sold it in 2012 and it disappeared off the DVLA register shortly afterwards, so assume it's long gone.

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Next up - this Micra for a wopping £125.

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I was saying how I'd like another one of these, and five minutes later I saw it parked up with a FOR SALE notice in the window. It stank inside, clumps of dog hair in every crevice and no effort could get rid of the stench. It was an SLX model so it was pretty much a range topper with colour coding and a REV COUNTER. Sold in 2012, last MOT 2012, has probably been to China and back in varying quantities.

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What this next? Another K11?

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I bought this off SportyShite for about £200 with no MOT - it was an auto that changed to top gear at about 35mph annoyingly! I nailed this up and down the M6 several times and it coped adequately! This is the only photo I have where I set the print out incorrectly for my unintentally comedy tax disc. It went to a mate who spent a load of money on it and drove it for many years afterwards.

I had a drought of Nissans for a few years as I got into Toyotas, but this year I bought my first Nissan Micra K11, which feel like K10's but a bit more refined and just don't drive like a small car I reckon.

This was bought from one of those millenial types who are called Dylan/Tyler/Cooper or whatever and after spending an hour faffing around getting there, it wouldn't even run properly. It was up for about £450 and I think I got it for about £150. Mad to think these were made in Sunderland, I think they did a really good job, they're so hard wearing.

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It was a very early K11, a 'Hollywood' special edition, but with absolutely no options ticked apart from metallic paint I assume? And the running problem was the usual - dry throttle body solder joints. I had a set of headlight protectors for about ten years and finally got round to fitting them to a car.

Probably the worst experience ever selling to bottom-feeders on Facebook with this one - it was bought by someone from Nigeria who put it into a container and exported it the next week to his home town, and I was so glad to not deal with some protein-drink chugging sociopath, I delivered it to him in Liverpool during the middle of COVID19. I'll never sell a cheap car on there again!

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Fond memories of 80s and 90s Micras.  My uncle had a black over silver Colette which we used to borrow when my dad didn't have a car.  Dad then bought a red 1990 base model , the first ever brand new car we bought. It only had LW/MW radio but the dealer did put a free white Coachline on it for him!  This was followed by a 1994 Micra Wave, the second and last brand new car he bought. 

I would still love a Primera eGT Saloon

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Just now, DavidB said:

The Collette's were on very early cars and seem to remember seeing a load at the time - I think they were actually called Datsun Colett March when they came out in Japan.

I think my uncle's was a D or possibly E reg. I know he had it in 1987 as I remember listening to the Sunday charts on Radio 1 whilst sat in it and Somewhere in my Heart by Aztec Camera was in the top 40.  He ended up swapping it for an E or F reg 309 in a horrible off white colour

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My sister and her then husband owned a 1988 or 89 Bluebird saloon in black with matt black bumpers indicating a lower spec. This was back in around 1998-99. It was a 1.6 LS so it was one up from base model but still very well specced. Well, it lacked power steering which was the reason why it was eventually sold. F483 CEX I think, so a local car. They were the second owner it it was fairly high mileage when they bought it but still in excellent condition. 

A bit off topic. I think I recognise the guy in @DavidB 's avatar: "a succulent Chinese meal!" :unsure: ;)

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7 minutes ago, tom13 said:

Colour coded k10 bumper look great. 

I always thought I preferred pre face k11s but I think I actually prefer facelift, both look great though. Its a shame they couldn't squeeze a bit more juice out of the CG13. Still have decent power to weight though.

They managed to eek 82 something horses out of it when bored to 1.4 and had individual coilpacks. I'm sure with a sportier intake and manifold you can grace 90HP.

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19 minutes ago, Fumbler said:

They managed to eek 82 something horses out of it when bored to 1.4 and had individual coilpacks. I'm sure with a sportier intake and manifold you can grace 90HP.

Yeah its not bad bit there were cars with a fraction more  displacement with more impressive figures. I have been looking at a 1.4 that is local to me  thats quite tidy. Problem is all the aftermarket parts for them are really expensive or need a lot of modification to make work.

ECU's are a pain as well to do anything with.

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2 minutes ago, tom13 said:

Yeah its not bad bit there were cars with a fraction more  displacement with more impressive figures. I have been looking at a 1.4 that is local to me  thats quite tidy. Problem is all the aftermarket parts for them are really expensive or need a lot of modification to make work.

ECU's are a pain as well to do anything with.

I can imagine! Funnily enough, the sporty Super S was just as sporty as a 1.3 SLX. The only difference was a different bodykit and front foglights. Didn't stop the Japanese though- they turbocharged and supercharged the K10 and I'm pretty sure the K11 got some treatment too.

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Unfortunately I can't find any pictures of my 200SX, which was the best Nissan of the lot. It was a far superior car to the Lotus Excel I owned before it in every single respect apart from looks (it was a pre-facelift S14 model).

The Almera was a 'distress purchase' and looks a lot better in the pictures than it actually was. It dieded on the M40 due to chain stretch/cam position sensor does not compute, but a CTRL-ALT-DEL fixed it, then I punted it. It was shit over bumps and shook/rattled a lot, suspect much looseness in the bushes though I never did investigate.

The Primera was my mate's dad's car from new. Mate worked at Nissan and got a fat discount on a new Primera 'Jizz' or whatever the special edition was. It was shit to look at but nice to drive. Radiator got sludged up but managed to sort that before the OMGHGF hit. 

 

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We had one. Or rather the wife had one to learn to drive in, fucking hell that was the scene of many a row. Life lesson learnt ‘leave driving instruction to the professionals’. It was in that bright red colour so possible ex BSM. 

The one we had would have been maybe a 1.0, it had the heart of a warrior, the engine took all sorts of abuse but the body fell to bits, one day a bit of corrosion turned into a foot long hole. Bashed it flat, filled it, gave it a cost of underseal and fucked it off sharpish through the local paper. The one thing that bugged me on these was the bulb behind the instruments seemed to be built in, ended up swapping the cluster with one from breakers to sort it.

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I really liked the Sunny B11 Coupé I was running around 1999/2000. Badged as a Nissan on the front and a Datsun at the back; the V5 listed it as a Datsun, so that's what I went with.

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Giffer-spec 1.5 with a beige interior, it was surprisingly nippy from a standing start. It cost me £350 from a small-time dealer, and the tyres were completely perished and barely able to hold air - so my first journey was a very slow wobble over to Bobby Shaw's Scrapyard where I paid £100 for a brand-new set of Firestones (they weren't just a scrapyard, they did tyres, batteries and exhausts too).

5-speed box and luxurious equipment like head restraints and a clock put it miles ahead of the HC Viva it replaced. Still, I felt like a sell-out for running a 'modern'.

Never gave me any real bother in nine months or so of driving, other than needing a new o/s wheel bearing and an intermittent fault with the indicator which was probably a bad earth, but which I fixed using a secondhand unit from a scrapped Nissan Prairie.

Unfortunately some lowlives put the windows through with a hammer one night (they did about five cars in the street), and glass was NLA from Autoglass or other indie operators.

I ended up buying an utterly hanging early B11 for £50 and stripping it for its glass.

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Although I got it all installed into mine ok (with lashings and lashings of Tiger Seal), it was never quite right and there was a bit of water ingress after that. Some of the plastic window trim also detached itself on the dual carriageway, and I never did find it again.

Ultimately it was the insurance costs that made me part with it - I'd paid only £100 extra onto the last three months of my existing policy (with Endsleigh) when I changed from the Viva, and thought that would be a broad indicator of the price difference, but when renewal time came I nearly choked when they quoted me £2,600 for TPO cover. Even when I found another broker who could do it for £1,650 , it was costing me nearly all my part-time wage packet, and so I ended up selling it for £180 and just getting the train to uni.

Nine months later I bought a 1.1 Fiesta and it only cost me about £750 to insure; I was a bit wary of Japanese cars after that.

An identical maroon Coupé came up on Car and Classic about five years ago with plenty of giffer-dings, but was keenly priced at only £650.

I probably should have gone for it, but couldn't make it work at the time.

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Last car on sale in the UK to have a carburettor when every other petrol car went over to fuel injection?

I think it was the Nissan 100 NX. 

Although something in the back of my mind tells me that it might have been the Lada Riva and/or Samara before they stopped being sold in 1997. Hmm. 

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53 minutes ago, ProgRocker said:

Last car on sale in the UK to have a carburettor when every other petrol car went over to fuel injection?

I think it was the Nissan 100 NX. 

Although something in the back of my mind tells me that it might have been the Lada Riva and/or Samara before they stopped being sold in 1997. Hmm. 

Pretty sure Lada tried the Riva with a catalyst on it before canning it in '97. I don't think they tried fitting injection to the Riva at all.

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Funny to think that my Laurel comes from the same decade as the Micra, FWD Sunny etc through to the R32 Skyline GT-R. They made some amazing progress in that time.

This thread prompted me to tally-up how many Datsuns/Nissans I've had from this era. Without looking back at photos it seems to be 15+ from the 1980s and just a couple from the '90s (facelift Primera P11 estate and accident-damaged JDM Cedric). For my daily driver requirements I found 1990s Toyota to be better than Nissan.

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4 hours ago, tom13 said:

Colour coded k10 bumper look great. 

I always thought I preferred pre face k11s but I think I actually prefer facelift, both look great though. Its a shame they couldn't squeeze a bit more juice out of the CG13. Still have decent power to weight though.

Yeah I prefer the facelift, they look more chunkier as opposed to cute.

My current one is a facelift K11, with 134000 miles and surprising lack of rust. There’s nothing wrong with it apart from gear change is a bit rough which might be clutch related I’ll get round to changing at some point. I think it had an owner that really looked after it.

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19 minutes ago, DavidB said:

Yeah I prefer the facelift, they look more chunkier as opposed to cute.

My current one is a facelift K11, with 134000 miles and surprising lack of rust. There’s nothing wrong with it apart from gear change is a bit rough which might be clutch related I’ll get round to changing at some point. I think it had an owner that really looked after it.

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What liter?

I had a green 1.0 K11 just like that. Was very tail happy in a good way.

Still got my first K10 which was gold like yours but it was a 1990. 1.0 4 speed. Head gasket went on it a few years back and the rust is starting to eat it as well after many repairs over the years. Got a  red1.2 K10 which was for sale on here and we have a slightly better condition grey 1.2 K10 as well. Had an N15 Almera which was reliable but sooooo boring. Would love to try a sports version with an SR though.

It's a shame the Jap stuff has gone up so much price wise. Loads of stuff I want that I just can't afford now. I really want a Prairie as well at the moment but I'm not paying 3g for one.

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1 hour ago, Spottedlaurel said:

Funny to think that my Laurel comes from the same decade as the Micra, FWD Sunny etc through to the R32 Skyline GT-R. They made some amazing progress in that time.

This thread prompted me to tally-up how many Datsuns/Nissans I've had from this era. Without looking back at photos it seems to be 15+ from the 1980s and just a couple from the '90s (facelift Primera P11 estate and accident-damaged JDM Cedric). For my daily driver requirements I found 1990s Toyota to be better than Nissan.

Laurels were the most underrated cars going until recent years and the Jap boom.

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I've had the Bluebird a couple of years now. It had an easy giffer life - owner lived near the Angel, so mileage very low. He sold it to someone who worked at the local motorfactors who only used it to shuttle between home and work. 

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For a while, I used it for everything, did a trip to Scotland and all. Very spacious in the back, helped a couple of friends move house.

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It's a pretty bombproof car in all fairness. Showing its age in some ways now, but it can be used and abused and just keep on going. You can see why they were popular minicabs in the 90s... simple enough to just work, but with the refinements of central locking, power steering, electric windows, adjustable mirrors etc. And very comfortable, it's like driving a sofa!

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On 23/11/2021 at 14:56, tom13 said:

What liter?

I had a green 1.0 K11 just like that. Was very tail happy in a good way.

Still got my first K10 which was gold like yours but it was a 1990. 1.0 4 speed. Head gasket went on it a few years back and the rust is starting to eat it as well after many repairs over the years. Got a  red1.2 K10 which was for sale on here and we have a slightly better condition grey 1.2 K10 as well. Had an N15 Almera which was reliable but sooooo boring. Would love to try a sports version with an SR though.

It's a shame the Jap stuff has gone up so much price wise. Loads of stuff I want that I just can't afford now. I really want a Prairie as well at the moment but I'm not paying 

It’s a 1.0 - love it, after the Audi, it’s super soft and quiet, even with a slight blow in the exhaust

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