Everyone with an R33 coupe MUST do this. Skylines are great cars, very desirable but unfortunately thieves know this too and they’re a common target. This fix will remove one of the most common points of easy entry to your Skyline.
Did the engine oil this evening after work, decided to do it now as the engine needs to be hot, but for the trans oil tomorrow it needs to be stone cold (as the fluid expands when hot, and its harder to judge how much to put in when you’re putting in cold fluid).
Another car, another cabin filter. See a trend here?
Today’s useless information is regarding the R33 model of Nissan Skyline.
After selling the M3 I (thought) I wanted something bigger, comfy and fast. I spotted this V36 Skyline 350gt on trademe, and liked how it looked. Blue exterior, 18″ wheels, luxury sport pack, full leather interior in tan, woodgrain trim and the 311hp VQ35HR.
It was in New Plymouth, so after a phone call I decided it would be a great idea for me and the better half to take the Fit and trek over there and back. It was about 5 hours drive north on the saturday, we stayed the night and 6 hours return.
The seller was a bit odd but seemed genuine enough. He claimed to be selling to buy the bigger V8 Fuga, but I now dispute this claim as I noticed he was selling another V36 skyline not long after I picked this one up. Anyway, it drove nicely and had heaps of power on tap. It was very tidy inside and out.
The next morning, as we started to head for home I noticed an odd smell coming from the dash vents. Cat pee. WTF? It didn’t smell yesterday. There was a cat at the motel (which tried to hitch a ride in the Fit) so I reckon that bastard got up and pissed in my fresh air intake. Anyway, it was bad enough that we had to stop at the next town so I could grab an air freshener.
When we finally got home i used a Wurth ac deodoriser which worked wonders. You set the car to recirc, full fan and set this “bomb” off in the car. It sucks the stuff up and through all the AC vents. Its great. Does make a small mess on the dash but it’s easy to wipe off.
I did the odd thing, like changing the front tyres as the width and profile were wrong, causing some rubbing at full lock. I also got a spare remote key cut and coded.
Also found out whilst in town one night that the battery was stuffed. No idea how I got home from New Plymouth with it, looks like it had dropped a complete cell. Went to start the car and it was dead. Managed to jump-start it, only to find that due to the dead cell the alternator couldn’t supply enough power to run the car. In the end to make it home I had to drive it at night, with no headlights, only fog lights on (as the alternator couldn’t power the active HID headlights), no radio, no heater/climate control, and nothing else electric turned on. If I gave it more than half throttle it would lose power and shut the throttles (fly by wire). It was a long, and stressful drive home, literally not knowing if I would make it.
Got a new battery from work, problem solved. According to the date sticker the battery was made in Nov 2007… a year after the car was made and a few years before the car was imported here. The battery had an old repco receipt stuck to it. Bastards, someone had obvious swapped in a shit battery and kept the good one.
Car ran great after that. It was really good at traffic light drags, stupid fast in a straight line, but less fun in the corners. It absolutely eats up miles when going long distance, but it’s too heavy and the suspension didn’t seem to be up to containing that mass in corners very well. I did have a couple of “moments” in the wet though. Even with traction control on it would easily step the rear out and require some opposite lock to bring back in line.
Ultimately it was too boring for me. Great engine, great body, great interior but average chassis.
Related Project Links
Well this is a weird one, it’s two cars in one.
After I sold the BMW I had a real hankering for yet another R33 GTS25T Skyline, so I went on Trademe and found one that was in my price range and looked OK in the photos. It was a silver one that looked mostly stock, the ks were moderate and didn’t have derpy mods all over it. Only catch, it was in Auckland. I spoke with the owner on the phone and she confirmed that there was nothing wrong with the car, no rust, no body issues and it all in good shape. I paid the money and booked the truck.
When it arrived, I was shocked. Actually shocked to the core. I could see immediately, before it had been driven off the truck, that it was a POS. I could already see some hefty dents in the bodywork and traces of rust bubbling through. It was unloaded, and I just dumped it in the garage and went to work, to deal with it later.
A thorough inspection showed it was completely stuffed. Rust everywhere, almost more rust than good metal. Also sizable dents in critical places like the sills. It also ran rough, misfired badly, the battery went flat while I was at work, the stereo didn’t work, the boot leaked badly (probably due to the rust), the ABS light was on, and the interior wasn’t that flash either (completely missing all the boot linings, tears in the seats and door cards etc).
I took over a hundred evidential photos of the car and took it to a panel beater. They quoted thousands to repair all the rust and basically said the car was more or less a write off. This included fixing the sill damage, which they said shouldn’t pass a warrant.
There was also plenty of evidence in the car that they knew of issues. Someone had tried to paint over some of the boot rust. All the boot lining was gone and the floor drain plug missing. A set of unknown spark plugs and the coil cover were in the boot. The fuse was sitting in the centre cup holder. it’s like they tried to fix it, and then said fark this and sold the car in “good condition, well looked after”.
I contacted the seller, who instantly went on the defensive and claimed I had ruined the car, and that it was my fault. “I described it as in good condition, not perfect” she said in one email. I provided all the evidence I had, and wrote out a full list of issues and stated that I rejected the car. After a lengthy and heated discussion on the phone she agreed to a refund once the car was back with her in Auckland, needless to say I lost it and said that wasn’t happening. We agreed that she would pay half the shipping cost to get the car back, and would pay half of my refund now and the rest when the car was delivered to her. She did end up pulling through, but I still lost out on 1.5 transport costs, which were in the vicinity of $800. Thankfully I got the rest back and wasn’t left trying to unload this shitter myself.
So all this mess fits into the story between the 525i and the WRX Sti Type R, but I figure it was best in here instead of its own place.
After the Accord sold I decided I wanted to try the Skyline thing again, and once again the one I wanted was in Auckland. This time it was white and almost identical to my first one that was stolen. Side skirts, sunroof and Falcon XR6 wheels. Super uncanny.
I enlisted a chap on a forum to go view the car on my behalf, and in his defence he did a good job, letting me know how it drove and what he saw. Obviously he isn’t as pedantic as me, but no one is.
I paid the money and arranged the truck. It arrived and all looked pretty decent. It had some minor issues I knew about like the tacho not working and some dents, but over all it was a million times tidier than the silver one. Unfortuantely what I was told was just paint cracking from a dent on the rear guard was actually rust coming through, but that seemed to be the only trace of rust.
It drove well, no issues with misfires like the other one and like a typical auto R33 turbo it liked to spin the tyres where ever it could.
Sadly the icing on the cake for me, and what made me get rid of it, was that unknown to me when I purchased it, it had suffered a rear end impact at some point. It had been repaired properly and didn’t really cause any issues, but the rear panel gaps just didn’t line up and it bothered the shit out of me. I hate cars with damage like this.
Update 8/3/20 – The silver one is currently registered, but hasnt had a WOF for 7 months. Its failed a lot of previous WOFs. The white one is still on the road with reg/WOF but looks quite a bit different now.
So one thing I had craved since my Skyline was stolen, was another one. They’re really good cars but tidy original ones are hard to find, even more so now, many years later.
I swapped the terrible Laurel for this, drove all the way down to Timaru. Got there and he had removed his nice 17″ wheels off it and installed mismatched R32 GTST wheels with bald tyres. Thanks. In order to complete the deal I managed to keep the wheels from the Laurel with good tyres and swap them over in the car park of a supermarket so he now had the Laurel on his dodgy wheels.
It was very tidy, mostly stock (just exhaust and a BOV fitted), and drove great. Once again in white, but this time without the skirt kit.
On this one I removed the BOV pipe as it still had the original BOV fitted, so no point in running two. I also replaced the wastegate actuator with one from an RB20DET and bypassed the factory boost solenoid (which runs 8psi changing to 10psi over 3500rpm). The 20DET actuator is a solid 10psi at wastegate pressure. This made a noticeable difference in turbo response, it was quicker, but it also meant on hot days I was getting some detonation at times. I ended up going back to stock to save the engine from det. Whilst there I noticed all the turbo to manifold bolts were loose, so that helped.
Unfortunately only a few days me owning it and I had already stuck the front bumper into a hidden, high curb and taken paint off. That made me angry for a while.
Originally I ran on the 16″ polished GTST wheels, which I think looked OK, but the offset was too weak so they stuck in the body too far. I swapped some wheels with a mate for his 17″ Enkei RP01s, and they looked fantastic.
I ended up getting bored with this and swapped it for me next car (another common theme).
Update 8/3/20 – This car is currently off the road with rego on hold. Hasn’t had a WOF since 2015.
My first R33 Skyline. After being in the Subaru game for a bit, i decided i wanted a change. Found this car on TM, with fairly low KM, almost completely unmodified, good spec (skirt kit and sunroof), it was a late Series 2 and in the best color (sans Midnight Purple).
Fell for the car on the test drive, loved the power from the RB25DET and the responsive turbo. It was comfortable and easy to drive. The auto was… well, a typical auto, changing when it wanted (and when you least wanted it to) but it shifted well.
Didnt really have any issues with this one, just tidied it up a bit (replaced the front RH seat with one that didnt have a tear in the bolster), installed a boost and oil temp gauge below the new headunit i also installed and refitted the wing that the previous owner took off. It also had a set of Falcon XR6 Alloys fitted, which suited the car well.
Sadly one day when i was at work it was taken from me. i was stupid enough to have no alarm and no insurance, so it was a great loss to me. To this day it still hasnt been found, although deep down i keep my fingers crossed ill see it again. Im sure the bastards were watching me at work too, had seen a silver R32 coupe (may’ve been a GTR, cant remember now) floating around for a couple of days (you tend to notice them) and it was sitting in the carpark opposite work the day my car was stolen with a couple of people in the car. Tried to get details from security cameras, but to no luck.
The cars I have owned, past and present, in chronological order.
Sub-Four Wheels of Fury.
They aren’t cars (or if they are, they are the Reliant Robin), and they have less than four wheels, but I owned them.
Cars I didnt own, but had a big part to play in my life.
Its been a while, over a year since my last post here. Kinda just lost motivation and inspiration on what to post here. No one really reads it anyway so im just rambling to myself.
Regardless, apparently this is meant to be a good outlet for everything that is floating around in my brain.
Its 2016 now, and time for a quick update. Since selling the M3, ive had a few more cars. Immediately after the M3 I purchased a 2006 Nissan Skyline 350GT in the V36 chassis.
I chose the Skyline because whilst a Turners one day poking around i came across one and it really appealed to me. Nice looks, lovely interior, and a 311HP V6 engine. They are all auto, and in the case of the one at turners it was a Type S (Sport) model, in pearl white.
To drive one of these things is interesting. Huge power on tap and will spin the rears if you arent paying attention, and the auto is actually quite a nice unit, very responsive in auto or manual modes. In manual it even rev matches on downshift, blipping the throttle. Sadly all that power is kinda lost on a chassis that is mushy and suspension that is woefully soft.
I didnt buy the one at Turners, the salesman was a bit unfriendly so i decided to buy one privately. I ended up with a blue Type SP, combining both the performance model and luxury model. Full tan leather, heated seats, paddle shift, adaptive headlights, and more aggressive bodykit.
It was a great car, and a great cruiser, but it really lacked the fun factor and was dull to drive.
I sold that, and moved on.