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FROM THE October 2011 ISSUE

Fujimi Nissan 180SX

Fujimi Nissan 180SX
Nissan 180 SX
Fujimi No. 038551
Model Type: Injection-molded styrene
Molded Colors: White, black, clear Scale: 1/24
MSRP: $39.95
Pros: Nice box art; body shape; crystal-clear windows
Cons: Poor painting instructions for some pieces; rear hatch windows have gap
The Nissan S-chassis are popular on the road and on the track. The most-popular is the S13, which has come from the Nissan factory under a variety of names. In the US, it is known as the 240SX; in Europe, the 200SX; and in Japan, the 180SX and Silvia.

The S13 also enjoyed a long life, being introduced in 1989, and lasting until 1998. This version, the 180SX Type-X, has been produced from 1994 to date.

The box art features features a great rendering of the car; inside, you will find parts molded in white and clear. Four soft rubber tires are included, as is a metal axle. There is also a small sheet of decals, with correct markings and window stickers for Japanese road use.
Fujimi Nissan 180SX
The chassis plate has the lower engine, transmission, and half of the exhaust molded to it, so detail-painting is necessary. The front and rear suspension systems build nicely, and when finished, look good. The fuel tank is a separate piece.   

The brake rotors are cross-drilled, but factory-stock units should be solid discs; maybe this was Fujimi going after a tuner look with the custom wheels.

The final step in chassis assembly is to attach the exhaust system, which includes a custom dual-exit muffler.

The interior is done in typical Fujimi fashion, starting with a bucket and building on. The bucket includes the rear seat, and door panels; however, it is not all that detailed.  

LHD (Left Hand Drive) or RHD (Right Hand Drive) options are available, which puzzles me, because the 180SX was never available as LHD. The dashboard(s) and center console(s) are detailed well, but the painting instructions are poor for these pieces. Two seat styles are available: factory stock or custom. I opted for the custom seats, as the instructions suggested.
Fujimi Nissan 180SX
The body is done nicely, and the shape looks perfect. I wish that the front fascia was a separate piece; it would make paint-detailing a bit easier. There is also an option for the retractable headlights to be opened, but you must cut into the body.  

The body marker lights and taillights are done well, and fit on the first try. The crystal-clear windows are done well too. Two windshield/side window buckets are included. However, the rear hatch windows leave a noticeable gap at the rear of the roof when installed.  

Final assembly includes the mirrors, rear wing, and wipers, which I did have to massage so they would follow the windows’ contour.

The satin-plated five-spoke custom wheels look right at home on this style of car. However, I do wish that factory-stock wheels would have been included. The tires are the same rather outdated examples found in many Fujimi kits.

There are more versions of the car hidden in the kit; a base-model 180SX front fascia and rear spoiler are included, as well as the stock steering wheel and seats, and a single-exit muffler for the exhaust system.

To keep with the mid-1990s drifter theme, I decided to use Testor’s Model Master’ Evening Orchid Metallic, right from the can. To make the finish even more unusual, I did not apply clear, because the
color coat dries flat.

The finished model looks nice, and sits level. My only wish is that the wheels and tires were centered better in the wheel arches.

This is a fantastic kit, but it’s not without a few snags. Next to Tamiya’s offering, this is a close second.


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