This identification / buyers guide has been developed for those interested in the Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech edition. This guide focuses on the Series 2 car, noting that only aesthetic changes differentiate it from the series 1. A guide for the Series 1 can be found by clicking here. The Stagea 260RS Autech, (otherwise known as the GTR wagon), is a special tuned version of the Nissan Stagea produced by Autech in Japan. These cars were essentially standard RS Four stageas sent from the Nissan factory to Autech, where they then underwent extensive modifications.

These cars demand a premium above standard Stageas, and are collectable due to their GTR roots packaged in a practical body. As with so many cars, there are plenty of imitations out there (particularly given the cars close links to the RS4 turbo), and it is important to understand what features are unique to the 260RS in order to make a sound purchasing decision, or to bring a car back to factory specifications. This guide intends to provide information on the 260RS including external and internal features, engine and chassis number details as well as the mechanical features unique to the car.

Period of manufacture:

Series 2 (1998 to 2001)

Number produced:

We have now confirmed through GTR-registry.com that 1,734  Stagea 260RSs were produced (including series 1 and 2). Previous estimates among enthusiasts had assumed roughly 2000 cars were produced.The breakdown between series 1 and 2 is:

- 986 (Series 1)

- 784 (Series 2)

A further breakdown of the numbers produced in each colour can be seen in the paint colour / codes section of this guide (section 5).

Please note that this has only been written as a broad guide based on a variety of online sources and enthusiast input, and should not be relied upon for a purchase decision. We recommend you seek professional advice if you are looking at purchasing a rare vehicle such as this. We encourage those familiar with these cars to comment or contact us with suggestions, corrections and further information, so we can keep this guide as accurate as possible.

1. External Features - Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech (Series 2):

The Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech edition (Series 2) had the following external features, which make a good starting point for the identification of a genuine car.

  • Series 2 front headlight, bumper and grille update which incorporated foglights in central grille.
  • Series 2 had mirror finish / gloss finish tail light lenses.
  • Unique body kit (front and rear spoiler, side skirts and tailgate spoiler).
  • Rear undercarriage shield/protector.
  • Standard ground clearance: 145 mm (5.7"). Standard overall height: 1510 mm (59.4").
  • 17" X 7" silver BBS wheels. (Front offset: +30 / Rear offset: +20). Look closely at the centre of the wheels, where they should have BBS casting marks somewhere between the wheel stud holes, and a black Autech centre caps stating "Produced by Autech Japan". They should also have a sticker in the rim confirming they are for front or rear use only (see images).
  • "Autech Version" badge on lower RHS tailgate, with "260RS" badge below.
  • The Series 2 did NOT have a front Autech badge like the Series 1.
  • Roof racks were fitted as with most Stagea models.
  • The 260RS should NOT be fitted with a sunroof.
2. Interior Features - Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech (Series 2):

The Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech edition (Series 2) had the following interior features:

  • Unique seat trim material, very similar to the R33 GTR trim, having suede like side panels, and a silver/grey fabric in the centre. Note, Series 2 cars have slightly different seats to the series 1, notably; the Series 2 seats have a hole in the headrest and are a slightly different shape. The headrest sits lower in the seat back when fully down.
  • Leather gear shift knob.
  • Leather park brake handle.
  • GTR style gauges (front torque split, oil pressure and boost) in central dash with ivory/white background on the guages.
  • 260RS Series 2 did NOT have pop out cup holders in the dash. The Series 2 had a different console to the series 1, with a small lid covering the storage compartment similar in style to the R34 Skyline.
  • In the middle of your instrument cluster, there should be a line going down where the "P R N D 3 2" appear on standard automatic cars. RS260's have this area covered up by grey plastic, so it should not be visible (see images).
  • All electric windows.
  • Dashboard insert panel had a silver/grey finish, the same as others in the Series 2 Stagea range, rather than the unique piano finish panel which was present on the Series 1.
  • MOMO sports steering wheel with airbag.
  • Tachometer redlines at 8000 RPM (Same as R33 GTR).
3. Chassis Number - Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech (Series 2):

The chassis number on a Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech edition (Series 2) should begin with the following prefix:

GF-WGNC34

This will be followed by unique 6 digit number for that individual car.

Chassis number location:

The chassis number should be located in two positions on the car. Firstly, it should be printed on the chassis plate, which sits on the driver’s side firewall / bulkhead in the engine bay. Secondly, it should be stamped next to the chassis plate, in the bulkhead/firewall panel itself, further towards the centre of the bulkhead. These locations are shown in the attached images.

Note, 260RS cars are fitted with chassis plates which state the car has an RB25 engine in it, not an RB26. The chassis plate shown in the images has been modified, so please ignore the red part which says RB26. The reason they have an RB25 chassis plates is because Autech bought the chassis from Nissan which were already allocated a chassis plate (ie – they were intended to be RS4’s). The cars had no drivelines or engines fitted, and Autech installed the RB26DETT engine and GTR driveline into the RS4 shell.

As an additional check, you should run the VIN in question through Nissans online VIN decoder to confirm that the car is in fact a genuine 260RS. When you run your VIN through Nissan’s "FAST" software, the 260RS VIN will make a small blue pop up screen appear stating that it’s an Autech vehicle (see screen shot image). This check is highly recommended.

As with most cars, there is always potential for a re-birth to have occurred. The best way to check for this (along with the other chesks in this guide) is to remove the plastic cowl along the front of the windscreen, and check for any signs of aftermarket welding, which may indicate a new chassis number has been installed.

4. Engine Number - Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech (Series 2):

A genuine Stagea 260RS Autech edition should have an engine number in the following format:

RB26

Followed by a 7 digit unique engine number.

Location of engine number:

The engine number can be seen on the inlet side of the engine block, under the thermostat / radiator connector pipe. The dipstick tube also obscures it a bit so you may need a mirror. The first line says RB26, followed by the 7 digit unique number directly underneath that. See the images for the location and an example.

The engine number in a 260RS is the same as the R33 GTR. Unfortunately, like most RB26 engines, it is not possible to confirm that the engine is in fact the absolute original from your car, unless you have very early paperwork you can check. However, you are able to confirm from the engine number that it is the correct type for the car, as well as confirm that it is from approximately the correct year.

The 260RS Series 2 was produced from 1998 - 2001, however, they continued to use the R33 engine stock, rather than moving to the R34 driveline. Therefore, like the series 1, you should expect to see an engine number beginning RB26-06XXXX through to around RB26-08XXXX, representing those year ranges of the R33 GTR engine production.

Note also that the Stagea 260RS used the standard GTR block, not the N1 block. Therefore, you should see 05U stamped on the block, confirming it is the correct block type in the RB26 range. The attached images show the location of this casting mark.

5. Paint Colours and Codes - Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech (Series 2)

The following colours listed in the table below are confirmed as available on the Series 2 260RS. There may have been special order colours available that have not been listed here, and any information with respect to these would be appreciated.

 

Paint Colour Paint Code Number Built
Sonic Silver KR4 192
Icelandic Pearl White QT1 434
White Glacier Pearl QX1 *
Black Pearl GV1 122

 

*Note: Icelandic Pearl is believed to have superceded White Glacier Pearl in 1999. Series 2 cars may therefore be available in either colour, depending on their production date. We believe that both colours account for the 434 white cars produced.

The paint code is located on the vehicle's plate as per the attached image. Build numbers courtesy GTR-registry.com.

 

 

6. Mechanical Features Nissan Stagea 260RS Autech (Series 2):

The 260RS Autech Stagea had the following standard mechanical features. These features are the same in the series 2 cars:

  • 2.6 litre DOHC twin turbo inline 6 cylinder (RB26DETT - R33 GTR engine).
  • 5 speed manual transmission (same as R33 GTR).
  • Rear mechanical LSD and stabilising bar.
  • 17" silver/alloy BBS forged wheels. (Front offset: +30 / Rear offset: +20).
  • Front and rear original tyres = 225/50R17.
  • Front brakes: Brembo vented discs w/4 Piston calipers (330mm rotors).
  • Rear brakes: Brembo vented discs w/2 Piston calipers.
  • Drivers side rear boot compartment should contain a bottle / reservoir with ATF fluid.
  • Looking underneath the car, between the engine and gearbox, the chassis rails slope on a 45 degree angle before levelling out. On the angled part of the chassis rails, Autech cars have a brace bar for additional strength.
  • Super Hicas steering.
  • Diff lock button.
  • Front suspension strut brace – note, adjustment position on the centre strut brace is at the centre of the brace on a RS260, whereas it’s normally on the sides on the RS4.
  • 260RS suspension should have forks at the bottom. If the suspension has an eyelet, this is a giveaway that it may be a converted RS Four.
  • Look at the clutch master in the engine bay, specifically the recessed part in the firewall where it sits. A 260RS Autech has the master cylinder recessed in 40mm, whilst an RS Four is not recessed at all.
  • 4.11 diff ratios front and rear.
References

The following websites provided valuable information for the production of this identification guide. We value the input of all 260RS enthusiasts and encourage you to get in contact with us or comment below if you have further information on these cars, so we can get as much information to those whp are looking at purchasing or restoring them to factory specifications.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nissan_Stagea

http://www.sau.com.au/

http://www.gtr.co.uk

http://www.supercars.net

http://www.skylineowners.com

http://GTR-registry.com