GTR Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello people,

I have been looking for a new car I have been looking at Integrale's, Evo's etc, but have decided to go for the Skyline however I am not well eductated on them all I need is a little guide for buying, I have a budget of around 7-9k max and wondered what is available to me?

I am a bit confused on all the models???

Any help would be most appreciated!!!

2,437 Posts
Hello and welcome to the forum...For that kind of budget i would look at a nice R32 GTR..There is a nice variety in the for sale section..If you can stretch your budget to around 12k-13k you can find an R33 GTR...


1,726 Posts
I'm currently in the exact same position as you are and strangely enough, originally started with the same sort of budget which I have now had to rethink - It depends on what sort of shape you are looking for. From what I have learnt so far, if you are looking for performance at a lower cost then the R32 GTR is ideal with many already showing impressive figures. If your looking for something with smoother curves and looks e.t.c then I personally think the R33 is something to think about. However, to get the same model....i.e GTR-R33 then you need to expect to spend more money to get a good example. This is even more important if you start looking at the GTR-R33 V-spec like myself. Because of this, I have now increased my budget by a further couple of thousand to accomodate but at the same time expect to avoid any nasty surprises that a cheaper one may be hiding.
Failing the above, there is also the R33 GTST which has its own individual looks along with a 2.5 single turbo which is still relatively tunable and a good one can be found for around 5k upwards.
Hope this helps. As I said, I'm in a similar situation but with the help oif people on here I am slowly learning.

9,657 Posts
Try these two sites which do their best to explain the differences & I borrowed by cutting & pasting the buying guide below for you. Hope this helps.

Use the search facility on this forum as you'll find we've all asked the same questions at some point. - 404 Error

Nissan Skyline (used, imported, new): pics, specs, performance


Always view cars in daylight. Avoid viewing in rain and ensure the seller has cleaned car. Dirt can hide a lot of sins.

If the Japanese auction sheet is available ask to see it. Have a look at the condition code given to the vehicle, as this will let you know whether the vehicle has any accident history. R, RA or 0 generally denotes accident history. A forum search on auction sheets will reveal more.

Check the Blue Nissan Build Plate at the back of engine bay. The plate shows the chassis number and fixed by white plastic rivets. This plate should never be removed except perhaps if the car has had engine bay re-spray so the fixings ought to be original.

Background data on vehicles from Japan is available through BIMTA :

BIMTA UK Motor Trade Association - Japanese & Grey Car Import Advice

On bodywork check the car close up AND from 10-15ft away paying particular attention to paintwork and panel alignment. Stand at angle to car checking colour matches and for paintwork ripples or signs of blending.
Look round the car and underneath for signs of over-spray. If car has been re-sprayed you want to know why. Check wing nuts for signs of removal and the front support bar to see if there are any signs that car has been in accident.
Look under sills at chassis legs that run from back to front of car on both sides. Make sure the small mid-way weld hasn’t split; this can be a sign of repaired shunt.
Check under carpet in boot. Make sure the spare is there. Pay particular attention for rust and signs of accident repair.
Open and close doors/boot/bonnet/windows. Make sure all panels line up as should and look for rust in areas water may sit.
Inspect underneath the car for signs of corrosion. Surface rust may be brushed off and treated.
Check all windows for cracks/chips. Replacing a window on a skyline can be expensive.

For the electronics and interior make sure that the engine check light comes on at start up but does NOT stay on when driving. Same with the HICAS light.
Check all electronics function correctly.
If the car is a fresh import on original stereo it will not function without wave expander (not expensive).
Nearly all the insurers will ask that your skyline has a Cat 1 alarm/immobiliser and some may ask for trackers.
Do the odometer readings appear consistent with any service stickers found on car? Stickers are generally located in door jams or engine bay.
Is the interior wear (seats/steering wheel/gators etc) what you would expect in relation to the mileage?

Looked after the RB series engine is strong. Make sure it has well cared for with regular service intervals, particularly important on a turbo car. Ensure that the current owner has been running on super-unleaded fuel and allowing turbo to warm up/idle down. Is there proof positive of cambelt change? If not, factor the price of changing belt into your budget. Buying from another enthusiast who knows how to look after the car can be an advantage. When buying a fresh import use a reputable importer with trusted Japan buyer.

Check that the engine appears cared for and ‘looks factory’ with neat wiring and no bodged jobs. This applies to both standard and highly modified cars.
Check for fluid leaks; i.e. Clutch, brake, power steering and ABS. Check under the engine for oil leaks paying attention to area around sump plug.
Check fluids are clean. Pull out dipstick and remove oil filler cap to check for healthy, clean oil. Black oil suggests poor maintenance. Does the oil smell burnt? Similarly check for clean coolant. Be wary of any greyish or gooey matter in these areas.
Check hoses and belts for wear and splits.

Never road test a vehicle with stereo on. You need to be listening to the car. Similarly don’t let the seller talk all the way through your test drive.

Listen out for whistling noises whilst accelerating as this can indicate turbo problems or air leaks.
Listen out for detonation (or pinking) under load. Detonation can be indicative of poor ignition setting, low quality fuel, excessive boost pressure or a badly maintained engine.
Watch out for hesitations or misfires. Often these don’t reveal themselves until around 5k rpm so accelerate through from 3k rpm in third or fourth gear to see if the car experiences any violent hesitation, misfiring or holding back at this range.
Check for blue smoke under hard acceleration and during deceleration. Can be sign of engine wear or turbo problems.

Make sure that the operation of clutch, gearbox and brakes is smooth. Ensure that the gearbox is not whining and that there are no crunching synchros on gear changes (it is normal for the box to be stiff when cold).

Check that vehicle is showing a nice healthy oil pressure rising under load.
Drive vehicle long enough that any temp issues are revealed.

At normal engine temp leave the car idling and check for;
Blue smoke = can indicate a variety of turbo or breathing related problems.
Black smoke = can indicate fuelling issues.
White smoke = possible engine damage, headgasket or cylinder head problems.

On the brakes, steering, wheels and suspension check for any vibration through steering when driving and that the car doesn’t pull to one side under breaking. Do a visual check on discs for scoring and check the thickness of brake pads. If these are going to need replacing imminently then try to get the seller to do so or some money knocked off.
Check dampers for any obvious leaks. Also look out for grease leaking from ball-joints. Suspect knocking when driven may be result of dry joints.
Most RWD GTS models are equipped with HICAS rear wheel steering. You probably wont notice the assistance of this system but it tends to be pretty reliable. Simply check that the HICAS light on dash does not remain on when driving.
Similarly most are equipped with Limited-Slip Diff. You should not be able to hear any strange or whining noises from the diff. Like the HICAS this system tends to be pretty problem free.
Check tyres for wear on the inside edge and make sure front + rears haven’t been swapped.

Finally the most important advice given to me when buying a skyline was ‘if you have never driven a skyline before then even a bad one can feel good so make sure you test drive lots of cars’. Don’t forget that the AA or RAC will check a car out pretty thoroughly for you. ‘If in doubt, leave it out’. Good luck with buying your skyline.

9,657 Posts
It looks & sounds nice but I don't trust EBAY personally, especially as after forking out for two RAC inspections I could have been stung both times in a major way.

If you do go ahead get it fully checked out.

I personally would say goto a decent import dealer such as :

(where I got mine)

[url=]Index sterte garage

There are others that I've missed but I'm knackered !!!

I'm sure other members on here can recommend where thay have got theirs.


A decent company will bring the car over, carry out all the necessary changes etc to make it legal in the UK, offer a full service & cambelt change & give you 12 months road tax & warranty. So basically you see the car, pay a deposit, then on the day of collection you test drive & then pay the rest if your happy.


2,744 Posts
i really do need to do more reading whats the different in gts and gtr??
The sky, the moon and the sun

R33 GTST is 2.5 single turbo, RWD
R33 GTR is 2.6 twin turbo, 4WD

Personally, I would have a R32 GTR with your budget rather than a R33 GTST.

Coming from someone who used to own a GTST and now a GTR I found there's a world of differenve between them. The RB26 has enormous potential tuning wise and even in stage 1 spec is awesome.

9,657 Posts
May I also add as 'someone' reminded me that the cut & pasted thread I placed up for MR KENT's benefit & others to read came about buying guides etc. came from the other hard working Skyline forum and club -

THE SKYLINE OWNERS CLUB or S.O.C as its known which I am also a member of.

Seems it put a nose or two out of joint with me doing this & not saying where it came from but as I have said to them I apologise but had it been vice versa I would have done the same to help out a potential SKyline owner ...
1 - 12 of 12 Posts