1985 commercial for the cool looking Nissan Silvia Turbo ZX.

The Nissan Silvia is the name given to the company’s long-running line of sport coupes based on the Nissan S platform. Although recent models have shared this chassis with other vehicles produced by Nissan (most notably the European 200SX and North American 240SX in the S13 and S14 generations, and 180SX in the Japanese market), the name Silvia is not interchangeable with the chassis codes.

The Original

The Nissan Silvia CSP311 made its public debut at the Tokyo Motor Show in September 1964. The introductory model was a hand-built coupe based on the Fairlady convertible, styled with input from Count Albrecht Goertz. Production ceased in 1968 after a mere 554 were made, every one unique with hand-formed body panels. Most of the cars remained in Japan, however 49 examples were exported to Australia and another 10 went to other countries. The low production numbers and tedious method of construction assured each car was unique and valuable; this is reflected by the car’s purchase price of almost twice as much as the next model in the manufacturer’s lineup at the time. After production ceased in 1968, the name Silvia would not grace another Nissan until 1974.

The engine was equipped with twin SU carburetors.

S12

The S12 was produced from 1984 to 1988, with revisions to the exterior trim in ’87 (referred to as “Mark II”). It was sold in three configurations—a coupe (often called a “notchback”), a hatchback, and a widebody chassis called grandprix (only 50 units made worldwide).

A number of different engines were equipped in the S12 chassis, depending on production year and more specifically on the geographic market. These engines borrowed from previous designs, or in some cases, inspired future engine platforms (with the exception of the FJ series, which was designed solely with Rally competition in mind). For instance, the CA series initially borrowed design cues from the NAP-Z series. The CA18DET’s DOHC head design was also later utilized in the “RB” engine series, the inline six engine that powered the famous Skyline GT-Rs. And of course, the VG series was the predecessor to the VQ, which powers the 350Z.

Info gleaned from Wikipedia

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