1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R
#364. S/N BCNR33003656. 46,100 kilometers (28,650 miles). “Finished in desirable Midnight Purple over two-tone gray interior, 2.6-liter twin-turbocharged inline 6 paired with 5-speed manual gearbox; all-wheel drive. Delivered new to Japan and imported to the U.S. in 2020; registered on U.S. title. Offered in all original and unmodified condition.” Condition: 1. SOLD AT $235,200. RM Sotheby’s, 8/14/21.
The market for Skylines is hot at the moment, and it was a perfect time to sell at Monterey. In last month’s column, I covered two R34 Skylines (also in Midnight Purple) that pushed all the way up to $300k. Those cars must have had an effect on the hammer price here. Prior to this sale, non-V-Spec R33 GT-R prices barely broke $50k. Indeed, the pre-auction estimate here was $90k–$120k. That it sold for roughly $100,000 more was surprising. Granted, this car is in impeccable condition, and unmodified Skylines are extremely hard to find. Yet the R34 Skyline is seen by most to be more desirable than the R33, with plenty of collectors itching for those models to hit the magic 25-year mark. Japanese dealers know that the 25-year rule means many of their Skylines are destined to leave the country — and this one probably didn’t exit for cheap. Still, someone (everyone?) made a nice profit on this car. Well sold.
2004 Acura NSX-T
#53353. S/N JH4NA21664T000119. 16k miles. “3.2L VTEC V6, 6-speed manual transaxle, limited-slip differential, Silverstone Metallic, silver leather upholstery, removable roof panel, Bose cassette stereo with CD changer, timing belt replaced in 2021, one owner, window sticker.” Condition: 1. SOLD AT $180,000. Bring a Trailer, 8/18/21.
The Acura NSX was Honda’s ’90s halo car. It was the world’s first production-line vehicle with an aluminum body, as well as Honda’s first model with the VTEC variable valve timing system. (The same factory that built the NSX would later build the Honda Insight and S2000.) After the huge hype surrounding the NSX, production dwindled until it was discontinued in 2005. A facelift in 2002 replaced the pop-up headlights with fixed projectors, but the consensus by that time was that the long-in-the-tooth NSX was ready for replacement. Honda teased a number of ideas along the way to the disappointing second-gen NSX in 2016, including a V10-powered supercar. The NSX market stumbled along in the $30k–$70k price range for most of the past decade. But recently it has shifted higher, as collectors have started searching out the best examples to save. The later facelift NSX-T had smaller production numbers and captures higher prices than the earlier models. The single owner here and just 16k miles explains why this example sold for so much. Well sold today, but perhaps just bought ahead of the curve.
1991 Nissan Pulsar GTI-R
#52322. S/N RNN14003892. 127k kilometers (79k miles). “2.0-liter SR20DET inline 4, 5-speed manual gearbox, ATTESA all-wheel-drive system, black paint, gray cloth upholstery, 15-inch Enkei RS+M, adjustable coil-overs, Kakimoto Racing axle back exhaust, hatch-mounted spoiler, vented hood, air conditioning, Tomei steering wheel, Kenwood CD stereo.” Condition: 2. SOLD AT $17,850. Bring a Trailer, 8/2/21.
This unassuming sleeper hatchback looks like a mix between a Subaru and a Volkswagen Golf. But it delivers a real punch from its legendary SR20DET, a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4 that was also found in the Japanese version of the 240SX. All-wheel drive helps put down the 227 hp and 210 ft-lb of torque. Those were impressive numbers in the early 1990s, the result of Nissan’s intent to homologate the car to compete in FIA Group A rally events. Unfortunately, it didn’t do well in competition — or create a legacy like the Skyline. That just means you can pick up this hot hatch for a decent price. ♦