MXP exhaust

I genuinely enjoyed reminiscing with Eric Nazario, owner of this B13 Nissan Sentra SE-R. Because growing up, Eric & his buddies naturally gravitated to affordable & fun cars. See if you’re younger, you may not understand this, and it’s NOT a knock against you. It’s more of a quick history lesson lol.

Because back in the 90s…

A lot of cars were both… 1) Affordable AND 2) genuinely fun. It was possible to have both! Actually… it was pretty natural & effortless. And that’s because these things were light, they weren’t overcomplicated, and they weren’t expected to have huge horsepower numbers. In the 90s, a fun small car was cheaper & more exciting option than a generic more expensive sedan. So people bought ’em… and fell in love with DRIVING. It was pure, affordable fun. Back in the early 90s these cars (like the Sentra SE-R, Civic SIs, GTIs, GSTs, etc)… cost like 15 grand. Very doable.

JDM Sentra SER

Conversely, these days we have but a few sports cars to choose from…

Most of them have automatics. They’re overweight & overcomplicated. And most of them cost just as much, if not more, than big convenient full-size truck. When you look at it like that, you can see why the good times quit rolling. And why all the fun affordable cars are now 25 years old.

But you know what else?

In the time of this B13 Nissan Sentra SE-R, car manufacturers were just… dialed in… in a way that that those same manufacturers can’t even comprehend now. Let’s break down Nissan’s global lineup circa 1992: Sentra SE-R, NX2000, Pulsar GTI-R, 240SX/Silvia, Nissan Laurel, 300ZX/Fairlady, and Skyline GT-R. Hell even the Maxima & G20 were fun driver-focused sports sedans with manual transmissions. And the WD21 Pathfinder at that time was a body-on-frame true 4×4 SUV.

B13 Sentra SER

Cars just had a much more magnetic presence back then…

It’s hard to translate that into today’s automotive terms. ‘Sport-compact’ was an actual thing. These cars were exciting, and easy to modify & personalize. 

Nissan SR20 Sentra

FAST was much more artistic than it is today.

There was more soul behind it. The performance in these cars was more carefree, more infectious, & more pocket-sized. Racing these things around the streets was wildly fun & addictive. And there was so much more of a connection. You could feel the tires in the steering wheel. And you could feel the absence of weight in its agility. You anticipated the next shift as these cars pulled out of a corner & winded-out to redline. It was such a connective experience. Driving these cars could never be passive. Windows went down; senses went up. It was all-in… all the time. 

B13 sentra interior

Today, we have overkilled sports cars in a big, big way…

As a car enthusiasts, that’s hard to come to terms with & admit. Because for our entire lives, faster was always better. 

But it’s not. 

TSURU grille

Eric Nazario had a B13 Sentra SE-R when he was younger.

Nostalgia is a very powerful thing. And it’s compounded by the world we’re living in today where everything is connected to wifi or bluetooth… BUT disconnected from touch, humanity, & reality. 

Sunny SER

So Eric bought this Sentra SE-R… a refreshing blast from the past.

And he brought it back to life. Eric bought parts for it here & there when he could. And he’d install those parts quietly in the garage after he tucked his kid in bed. Eventually, Eric ended up with something more than he ever intended. 

Nismo gas cap

And here’s the thing:

We DO live in that wifi-driven world now… can’t escape it. But that means we have access to ALL the information we could ever want (so long as they don’t censoring it). But just because you have all the info… does NOT mean that you KNOW.

Senta SER wing

You would think the younger generations would have a hard time separating their Youtube channels & video games from reality.

But in fact – it seems to be the opposite. It seems (from my vantage point) like the younger generations are actually having a harder time CONNECTING what they see online… to their own reality. 

TSURU headlights

Look at your average teenage dude these days.

Surely they play car-related video games, right? And you know car culture is seeping into their YouTube videos, Instagram reels, and Tik Tok feeds. Testosterone should be at max boost by this point in their sock-humping adolescence. Yet – they’re somehow not getting activated to put the phone down… even to go get their damn driver’s license! They’re not finding the ambition to buy their own car & make it their own. And they’re not connecting the dots between car ownership, and a sense of independence and/or freedom. They have all the digital exposure at their soft little fingertips, yet most are seemingly content to keep riding shotgun in mom’s minivan. 

Seibon Sentra hood

I don’t get it…

With car culture… just the same as with any outdoor activity: You can watch it online, you can get inspired by it online, but you can’t DO it online. 

Nissan SER

Automotive YouTubers go to insane extremes with car builds…

But more often than not – it’s for the love of the viewership… more than the love of the culture. Big difference. And what it’s doing big picture – is making kids/fans think that everything has to be swapped, chopped, and 1000+ horsepower to be worth it’. And it’s widening that gap & DISconnecting the dots between what the youth sees online… and their subsequent motivation to get involved in real life. 

Eric Nazario sees that for sure. But unlike me, it doesn’t bother him so much lol. Instead, it makes him immensely grateful that he got to live in such a cool & pure automotive era. It’ll forever be a part of his DNA, and it’ll always show through in the way he builds cars. 

Text by Wooley     Photos by Cher Pheng Lee

B13 Nissan Senta

SIDENOTE:

These B13 Sentra SE-Rs came with the SR20 DE, non-turbo motor. It’s a fun engine for the time. But – you can easily & cheaply turbocharge that engine anywhere down the road with a 1) a Pulsar GTI-R manifold, 2) a GTI-R turbo, And 3) a GTI-R MAF (or these same parts from a JDM Avenir or Bluebird will also work).

Parts may cost somewhere in the $500 range? But with prices going so crazy, it may be going up as I write this. The parts bolt right on, but the SR20DE ran a higher compression than the factory-turbocharged DET variant. So from Eric’s personal experience & from his peer’s experience… you can run 9lbs of boost. 9 is the magic number. Be happy at 9. Don’t go above 9 lol. 

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EXTERIOR:

Sunny GTS2 shaved front and rear bumpers

R33 bumper vents & side markers

Custom lip kit with a… 

 •’89 Civic front lip 

 •’99 Nissan P11 sideskirts 

 •’97 Civic rear lip

Carbon Creations front, side splitters, and spats w/ Nismo badges

TSURU headlights & grille

JDM Sunny grille emblem

Depo glass fog lights

Amber upper & lower corner lenses

Hella taillights with smoked clear lenses

WRX fog/brake light

Seibon Carbon hood with GTI-R carbon scoop and vents

Nismo stripes kit

Nissan Sport dual tone horns

Seibon Carbon trunk 

R32 Nismo carbon fiber trunk spoiler

Shaved passenger door lock

New paint with shaved bodylines

Custom rear diffuser

Nissan SR20 Sentra

ENGINE:

SR20DET Bluebird motor

Garrett GTX2871r turbo

ACL race bearings

XS Power exhaust manifold 

Pulsar GTI-R stainless oil & water lines, and GTI-R high flow recirculating j-pipe

Mishimoto intercooler, radiator, and oil cooler

O2 Induction polished intake manifold

Infinity Q45 90mm throttle body

750CC injectors

Walbro 255 fuel pump

Trilogy Performance ROM tuned ECU 

TOMEI fuel pressure regulator

HKS SSQV blow off valve

APEX’i air filter

200 amp alternator

VRS 3in catback exhaust

Outlaw Engineering thermal intake spacer kit

MPI oil block

Custom oil filter relocation kit w/ oversized filter

Optima redtop battery in custom carbon battery tray

C’s Performance solid subframe bushings

Energy Suspension polyurethane motor mount kit

Singh’s solid front engine mount

Custom CF air diverter panel

TRANSMISSION:

B15 RSFA70V 5-speed LSD transmission (cable converted)

Mikos tranny saver bracket

Competition Clutch 4-puck unsprung clutch kit

13-lb flywheel

SUSPENSION:

Energy Suspension complete red bushings kit

D&D 40-way adjustable coilovers

Delgado center arm

TDM adjustable rear control arms

Cusco front strut bar

Ultra Racing fender braces & rear strut bar

ST Suspension 29mm front sway bar & 19mm rear sway bar

SLS traction bars

C’s Performance subframe bushings kit 

Rays Nismo LMGT4 wheels

WHEELS / TIRES / BRAKES:

Rays NISMO LMGT4 wheels 

 •Front 17×8.5 

 •Rear 7×9.5 

Federal RSR R 215/40/17 tires 

15mm rear wheel spacers

R34 Skyline GTT 4-piston front calipers 

 •ceramic pads 

 •310mm rotors 

 •StopTech stainless brake lines

1995 Maxima rear calipers 

 • ceramic pads

 •260mm rotors

 •StopTech stainless brake lines

Altima master cylinder

INTERIOR:

Recaro seats 

Nissan P11 rear leather seats & Nissan March super turbo steering wheel

NRG quick release

NX center console

CF doorcard inserts

Custom red carpet

Red b-pillar mounted seatbelts

Sabelt red 3″ harnesses

Nismo titanium shift knob

Speed Depot harness bar

350z OEM aluminum pedal set

AEM UEGO

Depo Japan black-tinted boost, fuel pressure, oil pressure & temp, EGT gauges

APEX’i turbo timer

HKS EVC3 electronic boost controller

NX 1600 digital cluster w/ Phoenix plug-&-play harness

Pioneer double-din radio with Pioneer 6.5″ components in front & Pioneer 6.5″ speakers in rear

Hifonics Thor 5-channel 600-watt mini amplifier

Rockford Fosgate 12″ subwoofer