Nissan Prepping 240SX To Take On FT-86, MX-5?

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There's talk brewing in the dark corners of the Internet that Nissan is preparing to take on Toyota and Subaru's joint sports coupe and Mazda's ur-roadster, the MX-5, with a revived take on the 240SX--and that it's coming to the U.S.

With everybody, even Hyundai, getting in on the inexpensive rear-drive action, it's no surprise that Nissan wants back in as well. After all, with the Z-car legacy and the strong history of the SX lineup, Nissan has as much sports car cred as any Japanese carmaker. For a glimpse at what the car might look like, check out this speculative preview story, and compare it to the Urge concept, pictured above.

The rumors say that the reborn 240SX would get a smaller version of the platform that underpins the current 370Z, making a perfect use of existing architecture, but potentially leading things down a porky road. If there's one single complaint against the recent crop of Z-cars, it's that they are too heavy for their own good.

Delivered with a smaller powerplant--something like a 1.8-liter turbocharged four-banger--the 240SX redux would be even more sensitive to excess weight. While the Hyundai Genesis Coupe might be doing OK with 3,300-3,400 pounds of curb weight, if Nissan wants to take the affordable performance stakes, it'll need to do better. But that's no problem, according to the reports--the car could weigh in as low as 2,800 pounds, a veritable featherweight by today's standards, with the notable exception of the Mazda MX-5, which is due out around the same time as the 240SX, and is expected to lose even more weight.

We'll have to wait about two years until late 2011 or early 2012 to see if the 240SX revival is for real, but it'll be fun speculating in the mean time.

[Edmunds]

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