Monday, 20 November 2017

M18Si

Something juuust that little bit more special from the already-so-very-loved world of Nissan's late-'80s S-chassis...
..the Tommy Kaira M18Si and M18SiR; lightly worked over variations of the early fifth-generation (S13) Nissan Silvia. 
Came across this original late-80s advert in an old magazine recently, jogging my memory of an impressively tidy example of the rare model for sale (at Fujicars in Hiroshima, Japan) in more recent months. 

A quick check, and yep, it's still on the market. Shock-horror, honestly..
Peak-desirability turbo/five-speed combination, a supposed 43,000km (while looking to comfortably back that up!) and only 1.8million yen?! You could definitely do worse. 
Forget the rarity and exclusivity of it being a Tommy Kaira car - I feel that money would be totally reasonable for a similarly-tidy run-of-the-mill S13! Sure the market's clearly saying "no" for the moment (and at, again, only 1.8million yen it couldn't be far off), but seriously.. you just give it a minute... 

Naming-wise, I think I can see where they (strangely) got their inspiration. The lettering, the placement: it's the Tommy Kaira MotorenWerke M318iS!

..but on with the grand tour past some of the other model-specific details: the unique oval-tipped muffler, the side stripes, and the semi-directional (urgh, one side only..) 15x6.5J alloy wheels wrapped in 195/60R15 tyres. 

Hidden behind the wheel are the larger front brakes with gold calipers, and behind that...
...the up-rated springs, sway-bars (F&R)...

...and LSD rear-end.

Up front, the star of the show: the CA18DET 1.8litre twin-cam turbo four. Tommy Kaira's improvements here extended further than just painting the cam-cover green; with the T25 turbo "revamped" (or.. err.. "tuned") and a more aggressive cam profile supported by a "computer-tuned" ECU - the resulting 205PS (up from 175PS) and increased engine temps kept under control by an upgraded (or possibly additional?) oil cooler.

THE RACING SPIRIT: TOMMY KAIRA 
Combining the passions of two Men. The genius of F-1 creator and the dedication and foresight of auto producer. Creating a new generation in the art of racing from tradition. Sending the heat and excitement of the international circuit to those who truly understand motor sports.  
TEL 075 461 6290 
Because nothings says commitment-to-real-estate like stamping your shop's phone number into the build plate. That's some confidence..

Finishing up the photo-set with a trip through the Tommy Kaira M18Si's interior. For the most part it's standard S13 Siliva K's in here (including those wooly seats I've rambled about before!), but there are a couple little niceties for your extra 900,000yen-or-so: a set of 100% wool Tommy Kaira branded mats we unfortunately don't get to see here, and very obviously, that gorgeous 365mm Italian-made (Italvolante) leather wheel. It's enough.

Worth that 1.8million yen or so asking price 28 years on? Again, I sure as hell reckon it is! I'm surprised and a little worried it's been available for so long, as it really looks to be a great example. And as I said above, not just a great example of an early tuner Tommy Kaira, but a super tidy S13 Silvia - a model that's otherwise on it's way to being thrashed to damn extinction! 

Very cool. 

For the sake of record-keeping in these edgy photo-hosting times (oh God how I hate what Photobucket has done to the general internet..), here's some further reference material I scrounged via Google from the depths of the internet.
Shh.. shh.. you're safe now...




Done! Now someone buy it before I do..

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