Like light from an already-dead star, here’s Richard Hammond reviewing the Euro-spec 1998 200SX at just a few years and 25,000 miles into life. It is a very different experience.
America has already gone through it with the older Nissan S13 and this S14. Our drift events are increasingly full of near-stock 350Zs and BMW E36s now, as the “drift tax” has priced many a young gun out of the 240SX. Everyone in the States got wise to these cars being good at going sideways, especially with a straightforward SR20 swap. But in the UK in the turn of the millennium, even with SR20s coming stock, priorities were really quite different.
The copyright at the end of this episode reads 2002, though the graphic lists prices for 2000.
Hammond calls out the car’s reliable, long-lasting engine, sure to make any drift kid laugh today as money flies out of their pockets into rebuilds, and chides the lack of practicality. “I think it will get your speakers in there,” Hammond says of the trunk, “but not a lot else.” Modifying a car was maybe a bit more about what sound system you could work into your vehicle than it is today. A car like this is more likely to get the full interior gutted than not at this point.
“It’s rear-wheel drive and a bit medallion man and a bit whahh,” is how Hammond sums this car up, as a kind of throwback car to days of embarrassing, old-school show-off cars like, I don’t know what he would relate to, maybe the Ford Capri. It’s funny to watch now that this car is a retro throwback itself.