The Nissan 240SX entered the global automobile market during a tough time. The competition was very tight among producers of sport coupes. Car makers were very active in developing innovations that can help them outrun their rivals. What Nissan did to cope with the very dynamic car industry, it introduced the rear-wheel drive in the 240SX model. It was indeed a very intelligent move because at that time, most cars only have the front-wheel drive system. This cutting-edge technology helped Nissan a lot to succeed.
1989: The introduction of the first generation
The initial 240SX came in two variants: a coupe named as XE and a hatchback known as SE. Both of them had similar design and body form. They both used the same components in the suspension system including a dual-stabilizer bar and the 15-inch wheels. Both models were powered by SOHC KA24E engine that can generate 140 horsepower, and they are backed by either a manual or an automatic transmission. No matter how similar they were, some features in the coupe version were exclusive and they were not found in the hatchback version. For instance, anti-lock brakes were available only to the SE, while the heads-up display and digital speedometer were unique only to XE models.
1991: The new DOHC KA24DE engine
After two years, a huge performance enhancement was made by Nissan when it used the new DOHC KA24DE engine to the 240SX. The additional valve in each cylinder in the engine increased the horsepower up to 155. On that same year, a limited sports edition of the hatchback version was also created and sold only to North American market.
1992: The 240SX convertible
The SE convertible became available on this year. However, the soft-top roof was only offered in the hatchback version with automatic transmission. The convertible did not do great in terms of sales and performance. Several complaints about mechanical failures hit Nissan hard enough to cease the convertible's production in 1993.
1994: The introduction of the second generation
The revamping of the 240SX began in the spring of 1994. Out of the three previous models released, only one remained—the coupe. It went through a lot of major modification so that Nissan can offer something fresh to the public. The 1994 model increased in length, and its weight was reduced by 80 lbs. Other additions were the dual air bags, fixed lamps, leather seats, and a CD player.
1997: The Zenki and the Kouki
Minor updates were made, especially on the car’s chassis. In the previous models' the chassis was located on the right; it was referred to as Zenki. In the 1997 240SX version, the chassis was transferred to the left, hence the name Kouki. The other adjustments were mostly aesthetic, which included the new projector beam headlights, new bumper and fender style, and a new hood.
1998: The end
The later generation of 240SX dropped in sales drastically and Nissan suffered the consequences. The tough competition in the auto industry ended the ten-year production of the Nissan 240SX. The last piece of the model rolled off the assembly line in Kyushu, Japan on July 23, 1998.