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For the most part, the sport compact and import modifying segment of the automotive industry is often portrayed in a negative light. Whether it’s street racing or car theft or whatever-the-hell-the-mainstream-media-wants-to-report, inspiring stories are hard to come across. So when we catch wind of one, we feel obliged to share with the rest of the world. There are just some things the general public doesn’t understand when it comes to modifying cars; what it can mean to some and much more for others.
Case in point is Sumospeed’s Nissan 240SX S13 Coupe build. A close knit car club that feels more like a family, Sumospeed was inspired when their member and friend, Steve, was diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor. Prior to his diagnosis however, Steve had purchased an S13 off another club member and had started to build it with a grand vision. Widebody, deep dish low offset wheels, with some high quality suspension to swing it sideways and go drifting.
But once Steve was diagnosed and knew he would be receiving plenty of treatment, his fellow members devised a plan to surprise Steve once he was fully recovered. Knowing that he would be taking out a lot of time to recover, they grabbed the keys to the car and moved it to a shop, telling Steve that it was in storage and that another member had taken the keys by accident prior to shipping out with the Coast Guard.
So the build began and Sumospeed had a goal set – to finish Steve’s car in the way he had envisioned and to surprise him when he was fully recovered. They got hard to work, and with the help of several sponsors including ISIS Performance, Enjuku Racing, Sage Autosports, and CN Stainless, they were able to finish Steve’s dream just in time to surprise him.
The unveiling was very emotional, with Steve’s parents on hand as well. The team also had a custom valve cover powdercoated and each of them signed it. They presented it to Steve as a get well gift, but we’re sure the car just did quite fine. Kudos to Sumospeed for doing such a great job and all the sponsors that helped chip in. Way to shed a little positive light on a much maligned and misunderstood car culture!
GALLERY: Sumospeed Charity Build Nissan S13
Recently we’ve heard several rumors about Nissan resurrecting its 240SX model, with each report becoming more credible. The latest comes from the folks at InsideLine, who say Nissan is in fact planning to bring back the 240 (known as the Silvia in Japan), which will be aimed at the younger and less affluent side of the market, but those who still want a proper rear-drive sports car.
The new model would aim to compete with everything from the Hyundai Genesis Coupe to Toyota’s upcoming FT-86 rear-drive sports car. We’ve also reported recently that both Volkswagen and Kia are planning vehicles for this segment of the market.
Based on a shorter version of Nissan’s FR-L platform that is used for both the 370Z and Infiniti G, this sporty coupe would be rear drive, with four seats and use a turbocharged 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine. Power should be rated at roughly 200-hp. A non-turbocharged option will also be part of the plan, as a high-volume model. Weight is expected to be in the 2,800 lb range, giving the car a 0-60 mph time of six or seven seconds.
The design of the car is to be “loosely” based on the Foria Concept car (above). We certainly hope it is loose, as the Foria doesn’t hold a candle to the FT-86 in the style department – which is usually one area where Nissan excels.
If the project does get the go-ahead (which we sincerely hope it does), look for a new 240 (we hope they call it the Silvia) in 2011 or 2012.
GALLERY: Nissan Foria Concept