Gargling Gas has always been obsessed with the sleeper car. There’s nothing more satisfying than driving a seemingly run-of-the-mill car, knowing you have serious power underneath your right foot.
‘Farm Truck’ from Street Outlaws is sometimes referred to as a ‘Sleeper’, but is it really? If I saw that beat old truck roll up with its tuned engine throbbing and its fat rear wheels, I’d know something was up, especially if they bet me money to race.
So what is the perfect wolf in sheep’s clothing?
I’ve written a whole host of sleeper-related articles, and this sleeper car link is a great example of them, as they are all A: Wagon/Estates, and B: Powerful and unassuming.
This led me to thinking about what other cars would make unsuspecting sleeper cars – after all, Gargling Gas’ sister site, Sleeper Cars, features many types of sleeper.
Nothing quite says ‘granny’ than the late 80s Nissan Bluebird. After a little research and luck (Nissan actually attached a turbo to this thing and called it the ZX Turbo), I discovered it would be quite easy to create a 0-60-mph in 6.5-secs granny missile.
That sounds rather optimistic, but considering the 1.8-L ZX Turbo possessed 140-bhp and the car itself weighed in at around 1200-KGs, what’s achievable with a little tweaking is pretty plausible. I tried comparing it with something a little younger and came across the Saxo VTS. I owned one of these fantastic pocket rockets, and it was quick. From its 1.6-L 120-bhp engine, it could hit 60-mph in a little over 7 seconds. It weighed in at just over a ton, but considering the Bluebird has the extra 20-bhp and a turbo, the 6.5 second figure could be achieved.
So basically, you want to take this:
Play around with this:
This is where a cold air intake comes in. Depending on budget, you could go further and fit a slightly bigger exhaust for better flow, but ensure it is well hidden so as to avoid being sprung as a sleeper.
You want to contain all the mods underneath, hidden and out of sight. The owner of this particular Bluebird installed a manual boost controller, and I’ve heard over 250-bhp can be hit, although for the size and weight, around 160-bhp is plenty to have fun with.
After all is done, remove all the ZX and Turbo badges or decals. Remove any sporty trim and try and replace with standard boring trim. You could even sell the alloys and fit standard wheels with dull trims.
Hopefully you’ll end up with something like this:
Probably one of the dullest looking cars on the road, but with a few sly touches here and there, capable of embarrassing cars way out of its league.
Let the fun and fury commence…