My first car, bought in 1993, was an ’86 Nissan 200SX hatchback (marketed as the Silvia in Europe and the Gazelle in Australia). I had just turned 16, and as a birthday present my parents and grandparents chipped in half of the $3000 it cost – the rest was my money that I had saved up. It had the 2.0L 4 cylinder engine, without the turbo, and a 5-speed manual transmission (which was one of my criteria – I wanted to learn to drive a stick, and I wanted a manual anyway).
This is a pretty close representation of what I had, even the colour is the same. One of the oddities of this model was that there were several warning lights in a strip running along the passenger side of the dash, rather than being in the instrument cluster itself.
I didn’t really have any adventures or anything interesting happen in it, which I guess is a good thing.
It was a good car, that lasted me nine years. When I replaced it, it was 14 years old, with well over 150,000 miles.
I finally replaced it when the maintenance was costing more each year than the car was actually worth. The final straw was when the parking brake wouldn’t release one morning and almost prevented me from getting to work. Its final act in life was to be cut up for an extrication demonstration by my rescue squad.
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