Jorge Solorio: 1981 280ZX
Early 2007 i purchased my 1981 280zx Non Turbo 5 Speed off a small local Central Point dealership not in the intention of buying it but really caught my eye. I had a good paying job at the time and saved up some money hoping it wouldn’t sell and after a week i managed to buy my first Z for $1,500 it was in really good shape and all the paint was all there some minor dents and a few rust spots. The 280zx was all stock except for a Flowmaster exhaust & 16 inch wheels, later on i added a cold air intake & Stage 2 Spec Clutch. After driving it for 3 years and not really satisfied with the engines performance i ran into a stressful incident with my Z and was forced to find either a replacement or a donor car for my Z. I Traveled to Sacramento, California after searching months for a 280zx on craigslist and ran into a 1983 280zx Turbo 5 speed that i had seen a year before, i talked to the owner and made my way after a few weeks of speaking to him on the phone. The 280zx Turbo wasn’t at its best shape but was a running car my biggest concern was would it be able to make it home with a blown intake manifold gasket? With luck i did make it back home with minor problems on the way going up hills on the highway. Exactly after a week of purchase i was heading to my friends dad’s shop where my original Z was being repaired from a front end damage. I was almost at the shop driving down table rock rd when one of the 280zx turbo front wheel decided to come off, it was a scary thing but i called the mechanic and came and picked me up. Back at the shop when the mechanic towed the car back to his shop i had seen that the rack and pinion had lost a bolt and completely broke, so now i was car less but all my original Z needed was a hood and slapped on the nice huge aftermarket air dam. For another few more months i drove my Z and met John Ray at Lithia Nissan where i talked about swapping the turbo motor & Transmission to my car, he agreed it was a simple swap finally after a month or so being the busy guy he is i was driving my Z once again. The L28ET motor & Tranny were quite a difference in performance since the 280zx Turbo had some upgrades like a T3/T04E Turbo, a Z31 ECU & MAF, i had no idea about these installations. I Had some trouble getting it to run good so i went and bugged John Ray once again and finally after a few attempts he had it running in tip top shape, man the difference it made when that turbo kicked it was just amazing. Recently i took my car to the latest Z car club event at Lithia Nissan of this year, as for my car it still remains a project for me to restore it one day repaint it the original color and have the motor rebuilt.
Check out more about my car on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LVJXTk34fi0
I’m also registered to HybridZ.org if you own a Z i recommend this site it is one of the best forums around for all kinds of information on all Z cars.
Thanks for watching.