The Nissan 240SX was produced from 1989 to 1998 as a lightweight, rear-wheel-drive sports car, and a used Nissan 240SX can make a good purchase. It was introduced as a sport-compact model for consumers that did not want the more powerful, heavier, and more expensive Nissan 300ZX. Today, automotive enthusiasts and consumers alike, continue to drive and cherish the revolutionary Nissan. Finding a used 240SX is not very difficult (over 260,000 were sold in North America) but there are a few details to look for before investing in one.
To start, you will want to select which model year 240SX is right for you. The value of these vehicles has dropped severely from the original sticker price (just like any 20-year-old automobile) but most of the newer models (95-98) can still carry a hefty price tag; depending on the mileage and modifications. The earlier and cheaper 240SX models (89-94) have a much more retro styling (pop up headlights, mesh wheels, etc…) but have still proven to be dependable, fuel efficient and fun to drive.
Expect to pay $1500 to $4500 for a first generation 240SX or $5200 to $8200 for the final generation. Of course, the newer generations will usually have less rust and imperfections in their bodywork when compared to older year 240SX’s. Also, the older 240SX’s have been known to carry more mechanical problems, like cooling system and transmission issues.
Through its production years, the 240SX was built as a hatchback, coupe and convertible. In 1995, Nissan dropped the convertible and hatchback variations. So if you like the hatchback or convertible styling, you will want to start looking in the direction of the older generation 240SX. Although, the 95 to 98 240SX’s were built with a more sleek and updated styling.
A quick note on modifications. The 240SX has always been offered in America with only one engine type. The famous 2.4 liter single overhead cam motor, known only as the KA24E. Now, most automotive enthusiasts believe that this is not a great fit for the rear-wheel-drive 240SX and therefore, many of these vehicles have had their KA24E motor replaced with a more powerful, Japanese variant. The most commonly swapped motor into the 240SX models is the turbocharged SR20DET. Although, there have been many other motors installed into these cars as well. Usually, the swapped motor is a great upgrade in power, reliability and even gas mileage, but it can also drive the cost of the vehicle up by almost double.
Just be careful and do your homework on any used 240SX you are considering, no matter where you buy it from. Owners of these cars have always modified different aspects of the vehicles, which can sometimes lead to unsafe mechanical conditions and higher prices. All in all, these little Nissan sport-compacts are great vehicles for all ages and types of drivers. Because most of them have been around for 15 years or more, the used 240SX you select will likely need some work. It will absolutely be worth the time and work when your daily-driven vehicle becomes the unique and sporty Nissan 240SX.