The Nissan 200sx 1.8 Turbo Specifications
200SX's are powered by a 1.8 litre 16 valve Twin cam turbocharged and intercooled engine. This produces 170 BHP in stock form. Being typical with most turbo charged engines, these cars are relatively easy to get decent power out of. It dosn't cost very much at all to get 200bhp out of one.
The turbo on the 200sx is a fairly small unit. The garrett T25. Whilst it is more that adequate for the standard car, it's weaknesses soon become apparent when you start to modify the car. It unfortunately cannot handle big boost pressures, and its real limit is just 15psi. Anymore than this amount and you will be severely shortening the life of the unit, besides after this point it will be merely heating up the air and not providing any useful boost. The best option to get more power, is to get a hybrid turbo or a T3. Apprently the turbo off the later 200sx (s14), will fit the s13 with a little modification to the manifold.
There is a manual and a automatic gearbox available (5 speed manual), (4 speed automatic). The automatic box is only capable of handling 270bhp safely as where the manual can cope with 400bhp! In stock for stock comparisons between the manual and auto, owners of both have said theres not much difference between them. The auto does have a better 50-70 time though. The cars acceleration in stock form is most impressive, bolting to 60mph is just 6.9 seconds. Just be careful in the wet, these cars are notorious for the back end snapping out of line. Having said that, put on some bigger wheels and the grip is said to be excellent. I have often wondered why Nissan put such skinny tires on them. However, driving the car normally is quite effortless and relaxing and long distances are a pleasure to drive.
The 200sx's are usually good reliable cars, they of course need looking after, but hey so does every car. On the early 200's check the oil pipe to the turbo, these are prone to clogging up and starving the turbo of the vital oil supply. This soon leads to turbo failiure. Its is extremely important that the oil is changed every 3000 miles.
Turbos are not kind to oil and they tend to make is go sludgy very quickly. Space inside the 200sx is great..... If you are sitting in the front. The rear seats are tiny, and really of not much use for adults. The boot is of a good size for a car of this type. The front seats are nice and comfortable, but lack lumbar control (on cloth seats). There is plenty of leg room in the front and plenty of space so you and your passenger aren't sitting on top of each other. All the cars have electric windows, central locking, electric mirrors, dash dimmer control, power assisted steering amongst the usual things. Options are Aircon, Head up display, ABS and four wheel steering.
The intercooler on 200sx's are patheticly small and are located in the wing. The stock intercooler has a hard enough time cooling the gases at 10psi, as soon as you crank the boost up, you are soon exceeding the limits of the unit. One of the best mods you can buy for the 200sx is a Front Mounted Intercooler (FMIC). After fitting you'll find more stable boost, and more importantly more power!