The Truth About Cars » Nissan Stanza Wagon http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Mon, 20 Oct 2014 22:44:14 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » Nissan Stanza Wagon http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com Junkyard Find: 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/08/junkyard-find-1987-nissan-stanza-wagon/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/08/junkyard-find-1987-nissan-stanza-wagon/#comments Tue, 27 Aug 2013 13:00:49 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=501297 Chrysler scored big in the North American market with their K-car-based minivan in the early 1980s, and the Japanese automotive manufacturers wanted to cash in on the demand for front-wheel-drive (or four-wheel-drive) small van-like machines. Toyota, Nissan, and Mitsubishi brought over the Master Ace, Vanette, and Delica, respectively, and you could get all sorts of […]

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11 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinChrysler scored big in the North American market with their K-car-based minivan in the early 1980s, and the Japanese automotive manufacturers wanted to cash in on the demand for front-wheel-drive (or four-wheel-drive) small van-like machines. Toyota, Nissan, and Mitsubishi brought over the Master Ace, Vanette, and Delica, respectively, and you could get all sorts of little Japanese wagons as well, but nothing seemed able to pry many sales away from the Caravan. So, Nissan took their top-heavy-looking Prairie, slapped some badges from the unrelated Stanza on it, and shipped a bunch across the Pacific. Few bought the Stanza Wagon, which makes them very rare Junkyard Finds. Here’s one I found in Denver a couple weeks back.
03 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThis one has just 151,369 miles on the odometer. Practically new!
04 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThe Stanza Wagon was a pretty good vehicle for its time, but it was funny-looking and didn’t have as much interior space as Chrysler’s minivans.
LWV12-Winners-HeroicFixIt turns out that the Stanza Wagon does acceptably well (relative to expectations, which are quite low) on the race track, as the Sputnik Racing Stanza proved in the 24 Hours of LeMons.
09 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinWith 102 horsepower, the Stanza Wagon wasn’t the slowest thing on the road in the late 1980s.


Such a happy little crypto-van!

02 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 03 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 04 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 05 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 06 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 07 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 08 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 09 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 10 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 11 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 12 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 13 - 1987 Nissan Stanza Wagon Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin

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Overlooked Race Cars: The Dominatin’ Nissan Stanza Wagon! http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/03/overlooked-race-cars-the-dominatin-nissan-stanza-wagon/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/03/overlooked-race-cars-the-dominatin-nissan-stanza-wagon/#comments Wed, 16 Mar 2011 03:50:06 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=387421 When shopping for a car to thrash all weekend long on a hairy road course, most of us don’t consider the Nissan Prairie. Why not? The Team Sputnik ’86 Stanza Wagon proved at last month’s Southern Discomfort 24 Hours of LeMons that you don’t need an RX-7 or E30 to do well in low-buck endurance […]

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When shopping for a car to thrash all weekend long on a hairy road course, most of us don’t consider the Nissan Prairie. Why not? The Team Sputnik ’86 Stanza Wagon proved at last month’s Southern Discomfort 24 Hours of LeMons that you don’t need an RX-7 or E30 to do well in low-buck endurance racing.

All the members of the team hail from the ex-USSR— hence the team name— and they are very proud of their race machine’s pass-through double-sliding doors. And we here at TTAC think the Stanza Wagon is actually a pretty cool vehicle.

And who wouldn’t be? Of course, the roll cage reduces its grocery-hauling abilities to some extent, but this Prairie can still haul a bigger Costco load than 99% of all road-race cars!

To create an atmosphere of mutual understanding, Team Sputnik gave this nice diecast Prairie as a judicial bribe during the BS Inspection.

The Sputnik Stanza Wagon was nothing more than a dead-stock 200,000-mile beater at the end of its useful life… with a roll cage. One of the front struts blew out before the car finished even one lap, the brakes acted up, and various nickel-and-dime breakdowns made for frequent pit stops.

Team Sputnik never gave up on their steed, however; they found a way to drive with the bad strut (no parts store within 500 miles had a Prairie strut available), and they kept grinding out laps. They weren’t the slowest thing on the track— quite— but their 1:08 best lap was about 7 seconds off the pace of the quickest cars.

Before they figured out that their wagon needed to be driven very cautiously with its bum suspension, Team Sputnik made a few appearances in the Penalty Box for spinouts and off-track excursions. Here we see them receiving the Bubb Rubb “Whistles Go Whoo-WHOO!” Penalty.

The battle for the Index of Effluency came down to three cars: the Sputnik Stanza Wagon, the NSF Racing 1962 Plymouth Fury, and the Speedycop And The Gang 1967 Parnelli Jones Ford Galaxie. The Stanza ran the most laps of the three (441 against the Fury’s 218 and the Galaxie’s 243), but the IOE balances the car’s accomplishment against its inherent terribleness; a stunningly bad car need not complete as many laps as a very bad car in order to grab the IOE. In the end, LeMons Chief Perp Jay Lamm decided that the Fury— which was essentially a vaguely car-shaped rust pile with barely functioning engine, transmission, and brakes— running 218 laps was nothing short of miraculous (the Galaxie was actually about 90% as bad under its pretty paint, but it didn’t run much at all during the first day’s race session). It was a tough decision, however, and Team Sputnik almost took the race’s top prize home with them. Another 20 or so laps for the Stanza Wagon probably would have done it.

But don’t count Team Sputnik out of the IOE race just yet! They’re going to work out some of the car’s bugs and return for another shot at some major trophy hardware.

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Weird Diecast Toy Car Bribes Continue To Flood The LeMons Supreme Court http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/03/weird-diecast-toy-car-bribes-continue-to-flood-the-lemons-supreme-court/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/03/weird-diecast-toy-car-bribes-continue-to-flood-the-lemons-supreme-court/#comments Fri, 04 Mar 2011 15:00:08 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=386167 As Chief Justice of the 24 Hours of LeMons Supreme Court, I receive many gifts from racers wishing to establish a foundation of mutual respect and understanding during the period in which I inspect the cars for possible cheating. The traditional judicial bribe tends to be a jug of top-shelf booze, but my drinking hasn’t […]

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As Chief Justice of the 24 Hours of LeMons Supreme Court, I receive many gifts from racers wishing to establish a foundation of mutual respect and understanding during the period in which I inspect the cars for possible cheating. The traditional judicial bribe tends to be a jug of top-shelf booze, but my drinking hasn’t kept pace with the intake of bottles of Stranahan’s bourbon and Zaya rum, and so I’ve been encouraging teams to bring weird diecast toy cars to lubricate the gears of justice. After the last round of LeMons Supreme Court diecast toy car bribes, I thought it would be hard to top the Leyland P76 and Moskvich 402, but the racers at the ’11 Southern Discomfort and the ’11 Gator-O-Rama have done so with the current crop of diecasts.

The Simca Aronde diorama looks nice on the surface, but it’s really the David Lynch movie of diecast car dioramas. When you look closely, the hitchhiker appears to be a cross between Frieda Kahlo and Sterling Hayden. The internal organs of the hapless Aronde driver will soon be pickling in fermaldihyde-filled jars in a shack off the main highway. Obviously, I love this judicial bribe.

This 1:18 scale ’66 Oldsmobile Toronado isn’t quite awesomely terrible enough for prime desk space in my office, but a 425-cubic-inch engine driving the front wheels via chains means I’ll find a spot for it.

This 1:40 scale Nissan Prairie was a gift from the team that ran a Prairie (badged as a Nissan Stanza Wagon in North America) in the Southern Discomfort race. If not for the performance of the NSF Racing ’62 Plymouth Fury, the Stanza Wagon would have taken the Index of Effluency award at that race.

Sure, it’s got some panel-gap issues, but check out the sliding side doors!

The real prize of this bunch-o-bribes has to be the 1962 Citroën HY van, which was held back as a reserve bribe by a team that waited until I really started sweating them over the dubious bookkeeping behind their car’s tasty aftermarket suspension parts. It’s in oddball 1:21 scale, which seems very French.

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