Throtl: Buying our next Project car in Japan!? (Help us decide!)

Reading Time: 20 minutes
Posted: 2023-02-06 17:00:38
Author: throtl
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Throtl Video Transcript

Foreign Welcome back to the throttle Channel we’ve got an exciting episode for you guys today that’s right we’re not in sunny Southern California we are actually just outside of Tokyo at Top Rank PDI and this is where a lot of cars come after they go through auction top

Rank purchases them they bring them back here they do service and maintenance and the cars get listed for sale and I’ve picked three cars today that I think are relatable for our audience for us as a shop that wants to rebuild cars that are also relatable to our audience and heck

You might even be in the market for one of these cars so tune in guys we’ve got three great cars coming at you let’s get started the first car we’ve chosen today is a 1999 Nissan Silvia these are really special cars and for those of you guys

In the United States we never got these we got the s13 240SX we got the S14 240SX but we never ever received the S15 platform and it is arguably the best looking one out of the bunch so sadly we didn’t get these we’re going to show you

One today that’s going to be eligible for import at the end of of this year which is exciting more so I think the affordability of this car lends itself nicely to a project potentially here on the throttle channel so let’s take a closer look at this car I’m going to

Walk you guys around the whole thing [Applause] All right well we’re going to kick it off up here on the front so as you guys can see this car has some aftermarket parts already on it which if we were to do a project on this car it may or may not survive the build a really cool

Piece nonetheless is a trust or gritty for those of you in the state’s front lip it is urethane so it can withstand some bumps and grinds on the on the aprons and also we’re seeing a set of LM gt4s on the car as well so that’s a

Pretty cool wheel set to get when you buy a used car normally you don’t get a nice wheel set like that behind it we have the OEM brakes which are definitely not the biggest Brakes in the market but what I like about them is they’re completely upgradable so if this were a

Project for throttle I would probably want to upgrade these front brakes to an aftermarket solution or maybe even a OEM Spec R or a GTR or caliber and also up front not aftermarket but definitely one of the coolest parts of the S15 chassis are these OEM headlights such a cool

Look very streamlined I love the little Chrome silver logos inside now all the models of Sylvia have these headlights or S15 I should say so there’s nothing really special here other than they look great when picking a good project car it’s always nice to start with a chassis

That’s in good shape this is a great example of that as you guys can see there are no major dense dings rust spots nothing on this chassis I’ve given it my good throw once over and I am absolutely positive that this would be a good purchase I don’t see any issues

With rust I know where the traditional issues are on these cars I’ve checked them all it looks pretty good as a project car you can deal with some flaws because a lot of times you’re adding a wide body kit or you’re changing this you’re changing that which is going to

Replace maybe a defective component that’s already on the car but I’ll tell you this car has great bones and if we were to do a project I would probably pick this one around back again we have our lmg t4s we’ve got a big meaty Tire on here again these are things that are

Probably going to be changed if it’s a project car so you don’t want to focus your efforts too much on picking that stuff apart what I like about this car is it has the OEM Wing this is my favorite wing on these cars they had a couple different versions they had a

Ducktail you could go with no Wing you could have this wing and there’s a couple variants I like this one the best and the fact that it’s already on here is pretty cool one of the things I love about this is the triangulated third brake light in here the way they’ve

Integrated it into a high-rise Wing I think it’s really cool and again this car has some Aero stuff on it it does have a side skirt and it also has a rear spat here as well which really complements that gritty front lip and gives it a nice low look the other thing

I like a lot of the cars that come through top rank they haven’t been fussed with as far as the badging and stuff goes it’s really cool when you buy a used car to actually get it before somebody else de-badged it whether you like those badges or not you have the

Choice to take them off and that’s cool this car has all the badges in the appropriate locations and that’s comforting we’ll walk around the driver’s side here to show you guys the interior but before we do that I want to show you down the side of this car look

At how straight this is there are no major dings or dents you’re not seeing any rust bubbles or popping of anything here the pinch rails are intact they are not rolled so this car was never ever slammed nobody’s ever been in here with a baseball bat or a proper fender

Rolling tool so that’s a good sign that means this car probably lived his life at this ride height that’s a good life for a car one of the other things I love about cars in Japan or that come from Japan a lot of times they already have these rain visors installed and these

Are an oem part they’re not an aftermarket one that’s flimsy they fit over the moldings really nice like they’re supposed to because they’re made by the people that actually made the car not somebody that made it second hand so it’s really nice I have these on my

Stasia and my R34 over here in Japan and because it does rain or sprinkle quite often here these come in handy because you can receive fresh air into the car without soaking your door panels or your interior with rain let’s get into the inside and see how it looks this one has

Been really well capped the bolsters show a little bit of wear but that’s really normal for a car that’s almost 25 years old we’ve got a steering wheel with leather wrap it’s in pretty good shape airbag it looks intact a lot of times you see these are faded and just

Kind of worn out this one looks like in pretty good shape it’s a little shiny so could use a good cleaning but all in all what I like about this particular particular Sylvia is that everything is here in its Factory location and it really hasn’t been fussed with too much

Even has the factory carpets in here does have a set of old logo Nismo pedals including the dead pedal which I think nowadays is probably worth quite a bit of money it also has a Nismo shift knob all in all this is pretty much an oem

Interior how you would expect it to look if it was bought brand new so again like I said earlier with the wheel arches you can tell somebody wasn’t in here heavily modifying this car and it had been put back to stock or anything like that it

Looks like it was cared for and it just wasn’t fussed with and I like that so you know what you’re getting into when you start a project on a car like this it’s always nice to start with everything in the place it’s supposed to be and you make the mods as needed this

Is a great great starting point the other thing I like is that this is a Spec s the Spec R cars came with this as a standard feature but I think the specs and don’t quote me on this but I think the specs came with this as an option

And this is the oil gauge here so it does have all the remainder of the gauges on the dash but they add this one as sort of a sports meter which is really cool I really really like this car and the more I talk about it look at

It the more interested I am in actually doing a project on it because it does have such great bones well now that we’ve seen the interior and looked it over quite closely let’s take a look under the hood for those of you that are new to buying cars a really good test is

To just shut the door and see how it closes does it feel like it it hits and lifts or hits and lowers like it’s not aligned properly maybe the car’s been in a little fender bender you can always tell a car that’s been well kept typically by how the door is closed and

This Corridor closes just like a brand new car so that’s a good sign that means that the seals aren’t terribly worn out the latches are in decent shape and your alignment is good which means it probably hasn’t been in a big accident or something that you should be alarmed

By the other thing you want to do is before you pop This Hood check the gaps in the hood see these gaps right here if these aren’t the same on both sides and they’re not true that means someone either had the hood off or this thing’s

Been in a front end collision so right now judging by what I can see everything aligns really nice lines up to the headlights this thing’s very straight all right well I can see that the boys at Top Rank have been in here because I see a brand new battery that’s been

Replaced and I see a pretty tidy engine bay is it the cleanest engine bay I’ve ever seen no does it look like a car that’s lived on the earth for 25 years yes so what’s really cool is this is again the perfect project car platform we’ve got an sr20de in here that’s right

Guys this is a non-turbo car I know you’re typically used to seeing turbos on sr-20s the specs came with a non-turbo option and this one actually has an aftermarket header on it that means somebody was kind of fixing this car up or wanted a little bit more performance out of it this particular

Owner added a Cusco straw a header and they header wrapped it so they were looking for a little bit of performance out of this but it wasn’t like this was somebody’s dedicated track car they just wanted to have a little bit more of a spirited drive when they got in it I can

Respect that they also added a cold air air filter over here which is hard mounted to the chassis in good fashion and thinking about this like a potential project car for throttle I would like to mention guys that we typically start with turbocharged engines when we start

Our projects I think this is a pretty new a challenge so we could start with a non-turbo version and we could put the money that we would have spent on a Spec R into the Turbo System and all the stuff that goes with that to make this a

Really really great option and a weapon at the track one of the other things I always take a look at in here are the strut Towers Nissans typically had issues with the strut Towers on these cars because a lot of times moisture got in between the materials and would rot

From the inside out these strut Towers look very solid and they also look very straight I’m looking at all the seam sealer in here that’s always where I look to see if the seam sealer has been disrupted in any way a lot of times if there’s been an accident and this has

Been repaired you’ll notice a variation in the seam sealer the OEM seam sealer is very easy to tell when you see it and if it’s not there or it’s been disrupted it’s also very easy to tell so this car I’m very happy to say that it doesn’t

Look like it’s ever had any front end work done on it the core support is very straight original paint on it you can see where the seals have been rubbing for many years this is no problem I think this car is an absolute fantastic blank canvas for our very own Mona Lisa

All right well that’s going to be a wrap on this beautiful S15 Spec s this is a really good platform for a project so let us know if you guys want to see us Turbo Charge this SR20 and make this thing the machine it wants to be we’ve

Got a couple more cars to show you guys so stay tuned I’m going to pull this one off and go get you the next one This is definitely one of the most unique cars I’ve ever seen and I’ll be the first to tell you I know absolutely nothing about the Toyota Sarah this is such a cool car though so I just got to pull it in from the storage area obviously it has tons of character look

At the doors full golden doors you get inside of it you feel like you’re in a glass ball or bubble it’s insane I want to walk you guys around this car I’ve done a little bit of homework on what this is and what it’s about and we’ll go

Over all that stuff right now and I’m going to go ahead and tell you guys why I think this might be a good project for throttle and for you guys to watch on YouTube I’m sure you guys know I like strange cars obviously I had a Suzuki Cappuccino which isn’t your

Run-of-the-mill sports car but it was extremely fun and I have a feeling this is probably along the same lines however it doesn’t have a turbocharged engine like the cappuccino it does have a peppy little four-cylinder under the hood one of the things I do know about this car

Is that it has an aftermarket front bumper and front fenders which I probably believe help this car a ton in the looks department now I can’t lie and say I’ve actually seen a Toyota Sarah out in the wild with its Factory Parts on it so I don’t know what the

Difference is exactly but I will tell you whatever the gentleman or female that owned this car before did was probably a step in the right direction from a looks Department it looks like they started by smoking out the headlights and tail lights the fiberglass or FRP front bumper and

Fenders really give the car more of a sports car look it has a little bit of a supra-esque styling to it if you ask me and obviously the front fenders have a wider Arch so you are able to put a bigger tire under the front of this car

Now I know it does have aftermarket 14-inch wheels on it are they My Style no do they suit this car yeah they kind of do in Black so I think I would probably be looking for something like a Watanabe or something for this car if we

Were to take this on as a project but the reality is is this a great project car I think so is there a lot to do with it that you can just go to the store and buy off the shelf parts for no you’ve got to get creative for this one and for

That reason it may not be a great project car for the masses however I think the throttle boys and I could tackle this one and make something pretty cool of it now let’s dive into the inside because this is a very unique car and I want to show you all the

Little features that it has so the first thing that you notice about this car straight away is the door system it is absolutely insane and unique all in the same time look at this glass line it goes all the way up here like a T-top and you’ve got a main hinge system in

The a-pillar and up here it allows the door to sort of pivot up now I don’t know if these are Gullwing doors if these are butterfly doors if these are I don’t even know I have no idea but check this out you’re gonna you’re gonna die when you see this there we go

Like okay so your hinge is up here hinge a pivot down there and you’ve got a big I mean this is very much like a Lamborghini how or a McLaren how the doors open right for 1992 this is pretty cool on the inside I think

You had to do that right you got to see them both up anyway look at this interior and look how easy it is for me at six feet to get in and out of this car very simple very easy and what I will say is this interior is a lot roomier

Than the cappuccino the cappuccino my shoulder was basically against the door and my head was basically against the ceiling it’s pretty obvious to see that whoever owned this car previously was a car person someone that wanted to fiddle and have something unique they did go ahead and put the old snap-on

Screwdriver handle on the shifter it’s like shifting a school bus in here holy cow look at this shifter throw the seats have a really unique shape the previous owner added really nice high-end Duffy gauges stepping motor gauges which is really cool but this is very reminiscent

Of the early 90s the way the dash is shaped and the vents and just the overall aesthetic one of the things that really jumped out to me was this person must have had a love for stereo or audio equipment because I’m seeing a lot of speakers added to the car and there’s

Even some really cool speakers in the back which we’ll show you guys in a minute it’s quite interesting and unique man you cannot deny the uniqueness of this car and the lovability of it just from the fact that someone who had this previously put put so much care into it

It made it look cool and did the stereo and did all these upgrades this is almost one of those ones where you just kind of continue the evolution of the mods you don’t really start from scratch wide body do all the crazy stuff that we would typically do but let’s check out

The rest of the car so around back you’ve got this massive piece of glass with a nice got the 90s style spoiler amp that’s actually made out of foam a lot of these crack and fall off and the the inserts on them rust and rot this one’s in really good shape but there’s

No cracks in the paint which is cool one of the things that really jumped out at me was this direct sound position funky mode so you can just get funky you know you turn your stair on just get funky just seems a little odd to me but

Definitely cool I bet you it sounds awesome in here one things we noticed was these seats fold down so you can use this as valuable cargo space and then this seat divider actually comes out and you’ve got this whole cubby under here factory subwoofers still in line here

It’s just really unique and really cool and I thought you guys would enjoy this we’re gonna need to hear from you guys down in the comment section if you think you want to watch us build a Toyota Sarah from the early 90s definitely wouldn’t be as easy as an S15 or some of

The other JDM chassis out there because it’s just not a lot of stuff available but this is a neat car we should take a look at the engine bay all right under here I think we’re gonna find a hamster wheel and a hamster or two running

Around in circles but we’ll see oh hey look at that oh aftermarket Samco kit on here water temp gauges grounding kit HKS cold air intake system headers wrapped aftermarket header and it looks like you put some sort of Rubber seal on here oh Blitz coilovers for the Toyota Sarah I

Had no idea so as you can see the previous owner actually modded this thing probably as much as you could possibly mod it without getting fully custom and crazy one-off stuff this is a neat car for sure well that’s going to be a wrap on the 1992 Toyota Sarah it’s

Definitely a unique and cool car and so let me head on over and grab the third of three cars that we’re going to show you guys today I’m looking forward to actually driving this one back over to the garage all right last but not least

We have a 1998 Nissan Skyline this is a GT so this is not a GTR obviously it has four doors what I like about these is that they are affordable this car right here can be had for 38 thousand dollars and it comes with a really good engine

Package which is the rb25 Neo if you guys don’t know anything about the rb25s they’re a single turbo smaller displacement version of the Godzilla engine the rb26 twin turbo let’s get into this one let’s Deep dive a little bit and I’m going to show you guys why I

Think this is a great project car for us here at throttle and why you should be leaning on us heavily to pick this up so for those our chassis aficionados out there you already know that this thing has a front end conversion and done on it now this is an R34 style face

Conversion for this GT the headlights remain the same as what you would find on R34 GTR however these are not the Xenon version these are the dumbed down version that have the appearance of a GTR headlight but they are not they are not the Xenon high value headlights

Which is okay they still look the part and they do the same thing and also you’ll notice it has a GTR look front Arrow kit now these are not authentic parts these are not Nismo Parts these are just an aftermarket component that the previous owner had put on here to

Make this appear as though it was an R34 GTR moving on to the hood it does have the gtt style front lip on the hood which is different than the GTR but it does have a v-spec 2 style duct in the Bonnet which is really cool definitely gives this four-door that really mean

R34 GTR look one of the things I really like about this car is whoever had it previously spent a lot of attention and time on rolling these fenders and making it so that this car could sit very low and look really cool my time with really really really stupidly slammed cars is

Pretty much over at this point I’ve done that and I’ve grown up a little bit and now I like a car that can actually get into manhandle and drive and it doesn’t scrape over every bump that I drive over this car has been raised as it’s in the

Inventory here at Top Rank because it needs to pass shock in so normally this lip probably would have sat down here and this thing would look absolutely gangster in a four-door format but they’ve raised it so they can pass inspection here in Japan you could drive

It off the lot as it is and when you get home you can lower it if you want now this car has the traditional OEM style Nissan caliper and Brake setup it has not been upgraded and it even has a set of work emotion wheels that will come

With the car when it’s purchased this is one of those upgrades that is this your wheel or your style wheel maybe not but hey you could slang these and get yourself the proper set that you want by basically taking these off and just listing them up for sale moving around

The side here you’ll notice the Aero package continues now this is a Nismo style or R34 GTR style Nismo side skirt and also the rear under lip here the rear of the R34 gtts is actually quite longer on the four doors so if you look

At a GTR versus a gtt you’re going to see that this had to be recreated and lengthened so it is actually quite unique and one thing I do like is they did put the Nismo style carbon fiber on all the pillars really kind of ties that

Whole GTR feel to this car and what I love about it is you got room for your friends the groceries your dog whatever four doors you can’t go wrong now the previous owner of this car has spiced it up quite a bit if you take a look in

Here you’ll see it’s got some authentic carbon fiber door trims he’s got a carbon fiber shift knob it does already come equipped with the ETC which is for the toll roads here in Japan if this were imported into the US which I should say this car is eligible for import July

Of 2023 this year so if you’re in the market for a gtt this one is available you might have to buy it out from underneath throttle but it could be in the U.S as soon as just a few months from now which is really cool does have

Somebody has a drift button in here a drift knob for the e-brake the other really nice thing is that the back seats remain completely intact looks like the windows have been tinted on this car for a long long time so the interior is in pretty good shape it’s not all faded and

Ragged out like you might find on typical 25 year old cars so looking pretty nice doors closed nice as we mentioned earlier you want to check all that stuff everything lines up so you’ll sound good around back she’s wingless now this is one of the things that if

This were my car I would probably hunt down an authentic GTR R34 rear spoiler and put that on here or maybe even just a small little ducktail that would come off the back I see it has an aftermarket set of tail lights one of the other

Things that I might do If This Were a throttle project I might put a GTR style tail light cover on here that does not have the reverse lights in here but it has them down here where the GTR is I know they make bumpers for that so as

You guys can tell my wheels are already turning If This Were a throttle car what I would do to it to make it really cool and unique the options are pretty much endless but what I do want to say is this car is pretty heavily modified and

I’m going to show you under the hood in a moment but you can see it already has a pretty massive exhaust out back obviously all the Aero parts and kit on it that is not stuff that would have normally come on this car so somebody already put a lot of time money and

Effort into this project and I think it turned out great they were just done with it and decided to sell it and move on to something else as you can see around here these arches again they haven’t done the traditional GTR rear quarter panel treatment which would put

A body line here and bring this out what they’ve done is they’ve actually just reshaped the fender and they did body work this has all been smoothed out under here and this car could go much lower and potentially not rub now I can’t say that it doesn’t because I

Haven’t been in it it has been done what appears to be properly and I don’t feel any rust or anything underneath that would be a red flag for a project so all in all this is a really cool car I think with the proper wheels and a proper

Stance on it it could be pretty gangster looking does have a bread bucket in the front as you can see from the back here I just sat inside this thing and it’s a very tight seat this was definitely not a large gentleman or a woman that was

Driving this car I also upgraded the steering wheel got some gauge accessories it also has the Apex power FC it looks like they put the time and money in they built a pretty neat car and moved on to something else but just because they were done with it doesn’t

Mean this isn’t a good project car The Price is Right it already has an r34g see our style face it definitely looks the part and aggressive and so I think this is a fantastic starting point for a project car all right let’s take a look under the hood here this is where it

Could go sideways really fast or it can be amazing so this is FRP so fiberglass v-spec 2 style Hood I already see that it has an aftermarket radiator here you see it’s got a big front mount intercooler it’s got a new piping kit for the intercooler as well

And this is an rb25 Neo so it has drive by wire ABS is still intact cold air intake system strut bar which I think is original strip bar for this car and that looks to be about it so this is actually really good starting point because you don’t have something that’s already been

Overdone or finished it’s basically kind of ready for us to have our way with it so I see a set of coilovers on here as well so that’s nice all in all just a really good package to start with I would not be afraid of this at all I

Think the strut towers are in really good condition I see no signs of any front end collisions or drifting incidents or anything like that which is important all the hoses seem to be intact I see some sensors in here for what looks like the Apex power FC

Standalone we’ve got a boost gauge or a boost controller here yeah really cool for the price guys I don’t know that I would buy any other car on this lot in this category for that price I think at 30 like mid 30s for this car I think is

Super reasonable and it already has a lot of the expensive work done already this front end conversion is quite expensive if any of you guys in our chassis world have ever priced out some of this stuff it can add up really quick you can be into 10 grand before you know

It in the front end so overall I think this is a really good option for throttle I think we should consider building one of these three cars here in Japan but we need to know what you guys think I already know what I would do but

It is important to us to cater to our audience and we would love to know S15 Toyota Sarah Nissan er34 I know what I’m leaning towards but I would really like to hear and know what you guys think so leave us some comments in the comment section down below hit that subscribe

Button and definitely give us a thumbs up if you’re enjoying these videos we appreciate it I hope you guys appreciate the time and effort that we’ve been putting in while we’re here in Japan on our trip to bring you guys some free content so we’ll see you guys in the

Next one let us know what you think foreign