User Login    
 + Register
  • Main navigation


Lost Password?

Register now!
Fast Search
Slow Search
Google Ad

[Datsun 1200 encyclopedia]

SR engine swap

(Redirected from SR)

Datsun 1200 encyclopedia | Recent changes | Edit this page | Page history | Switch to MediaWiki mode

Printable version | Disclaimers | Privacy policy
Categories: Engine Modifications | Engine Swaps | Nissan Engines

The SR20 can bolt-in to a Datsun 1200 without cutting the firewall, though it's easier with an original automatic-equpped car (which has a bigger central tunnel). The 1989 SR series is considered to be the replacement for the 1981 CA Engine based primarily on NVH improvements. It is heavier and bulkier than the CA series, but the SR20 puts out more HP than the CA18 or CA20 engines. In most Australia states, 2-liter is the largest normal engine swap into 1200, so the SR20 naturally aspirated is the ultimate capacity swap. In North America where there are no laws limiting capacity swaps, the KA24 is a more popular swap due to the larger CCs, higher horsepower in stock form, and higher availability.



Also See: Nissan SR engine

1136.jpgAlbum 1136

  • SR16VE is a hot one (NEO VVL), but small displacement means it is better for parts to make a hot SR20
  • 16VE N1 Autech was 200 HP stock with with 8600 RPM redline
  • SR18Di was made for a while (1990-1993), but has less HP than the lighter GA16DE engine -- see GA Engine Swap
  • SR18DE made 125HP, but is much heavier and bulkier than CA18DE 131 HP
  • SR20Di only 122 HP (single-point Fuel Injection aka TBI)
  • SR20De is low emissions version
  • SR20DE from 140 to 169 HP
  • SR20VE has NEO VVL variable camshaft timing and lift (Nissan VVL). Unfortunately it was only available in FWD vehicles
  • SR20VET has the most HP (280HP) and was available only in the X-trail GT
  • SR20DET from 205 to 250 HP


NeoVVL 1200 Coupe
9416.jpgAlbum 9416 9417.jpgAlbum 9417 9418.jpgAlbum 9418

18108.jpgAlbum 18108 18109.jpgAlbum 18109 1121.jpgAlbum 1121

Which is better - CA or SR?

  • CA18DET = street legal in all States
  • SR20DET = not street legal in a 1200 in Australia. A bit newer, a bit more power, heaps more parts globally, many more of these engines, so more parts for a long time

SR20 has more CCs -- and there's no replacement for displacement. On the other hand, SR20DET is too big for legal street use in some countries.

CA18DET 167 hp  stock
SR20DET 205+ hp stock
modded stock block (stock rods, pistons, head)
CA 400 hp
SR 400 hp
Cams, turbo, intake and exhaust are the mods
To go over 400 hp internal upgrades are needed
Naturally aspirated, bone stock
CA18DE 131 hp
SR20DE 140-169 hp
  • There are more racing parts for SR engines. On the other hand, there are the same type of racing parts for CA engines (just not as many brands of them). There are even stroker kits for CA. It is easier to get parts like winged sumps etc for an SR. That doesn't mean the same parts are not available for the CA, it just means you need to look a bit harder.
  • SR engine fits in a an unmodified 1200 engine bay. So does CA engine. Tie.

LOOKS - do you prefer the CA look or the SR look? Bulging muscles, or muscular athetic build?
21787.jpgAlbum 21787 12526_4fccd0ba28924.jpgUpload click to view

  • CA is lighter than SR. On the other hand, both are far heavier than A-series engines. Yes, the SR has an alloy block, but it's still heavier than CA.
  • SR is more expensive than CA in many countries. In USA, CA18DET is less expensive then SR20DET -- RWD versions of both are imported as used engines (both were sold in USA in FWD form only). In USA the KA24DE from S14 trumps both CA or SR non-turbo engines. Cheaper and more powerful.
  • More 1200 fans are experienced at CA swaps, so there is a larger body of knowledge and know-how for the CA swap. On the other hand there are plenty of SR swaps too.
  • SOUND: SR has a different engine note, which some may prefer. Others like the sound of the CA.
  • SR has timing chain, which requires less maintenance than the CA's timing belt. CA coils on the other hand often go bad.

Swap Overview

This is one way to swap an SR20DE into a 1200 -- and is easier than most ways.

  • Stock SR20DE from Silvia S13 (RWD), get complete with wiring and 5-speed
  • Find the 5 wires needed to run the engine and connect them to the 1200 wiring system
  • Stumpy 5-speed, swap front case with SR 5-speed front case
  • Stock 1200 auto driveshaft (unmodified)
  • Create Gearbox Mount suitable for Stumpy
  • Cut the stock 1200 crossmember uprights, weld flat plates at an engle to it. Drill a hole for the Silvia engine mounts
  • Fit a large B310 radiator or other similar shaped radiator
  • Modify/find radiator hoses and water outlet to suit
  • Fit exhaust (welding, tube bending, etc)
  • Fit 5/16" medium pressure EFI fuel hoses and EFI fuel pump
  • No need for tank baffling or swirl pot (surge tank) -- if you keep the tank above 1/4 filled
  • Use skinny tires with stock 1200 diff, or fit a 1200 Ute diff (H165) for more spirited driving. Swap in an H190 rear axle assembly for hard driving.

If your government requires it, check with an Engineer before starting this project. Local regulations may require other changes to the engine as well as to the chassis.

RWD vs. FWD block

FWD generally has the distributor at the back of the cylinder head, while RWD has it on the front. To install a FWD SR in a 1200:


  • Cut a hole in the firewall so that the distributor can fit


* Japan market Nissan Silvia PS13, S14, S15 1990-2002
* Japan market Nissan 180SX RS13 (S13 fastback)
* Europe market Nissan S14 (SR20DET only)
* Japan market C23/C24 Vanette Serena
  has engine configuration more like a FWD version
* Europe market Serena C23M

RWD vs FWD bolt pattern plate 30411-52F00 | 1992 Nissan B13
SR_30411-52F00.jpg SR20_B13.jpg

AWD Bluebird
10011.jpgAlbum 10011 10010.jpgAlbum 10010 10009.jpgAlbum 10009


SR can use the same mounts as L-series or Z-series or KA-series. So treat the crossmember like any L-series swap.

See main article: L/Z/KA/SR Crossmember

Maddat Crossmember

Maddat sells conversion crossmember
FKSR1200.jpg 10290_4d8336d28d5fb.jpgPost 360401

Product No - FKSR1200 
SR20/1200 Fitting Kit 

Engine Cross Member, Modified SR Engine Mounts, Rubber Engine Mounts, Gearbox X-Member and sway bar kit. Trans tunnel, and remote clutch application sold separately. Very tight conversion, recommend using S13 to avoid problems with manifold hitting brake booster.


SR20/SR20DET gearboxes for RWD
* 5-speed FS5W71C
* 6-speed FS6R92A
* Automatic RE4R01A
  • Japan Market S15 came with 5-speed FS5W71C. Optional was 6-speed FS6R92A or Automatic.
  • Japan Market S13/S14 with SR20 came with FS5W71C.

71C transmissions don't have a removable bellhousing. Instead its integral with the Front Case. 71C gearbox for other engines (e.g. KA24, CA18, VG30) can be used: by partially disassembling the gearbox and swapping the front half of the case it can be used on the other engine.

See 71-series Transmission#Swap Notes for more swap details
See Stumpy for a bolt-in version that fits the Datsun 1200


Japan Market RWD

Vanette is similar to the FWD SRs in that the distributor is on the back on the cylinder head, and the Throttle Body is pointing back. Because the engine is mounted under the floor, there is no firewall to foul on.

C23   	SR20DE  9106-9906 Vanette Serena 
* underslung plenum back-head 
* rocker cover vent straight-back
* rear exhaust
C24   	SR20DE  9907- Serena
* top plenum straight-back
* rocker cover vent on back sides
* center exhaust
S13   	SR20D   9101-9310 Silvia underslung up rearex
RS13  	SR20DE  9608-9812 180SX
S14   	SR20DE  9310-9812 Silvia overslung forward rearex
S15   	SR20DE  9901- Silvia overslung forward rearex
S13   	SR20DT  9101-9310 Silvia COP COVER (13287-51E00)
RS13  	SR20DET 9101-9812 180SX COP COVER (13287-51E00/13287-51E01)
S14   	SR20DET 9310-9812 Silvia overslung forward rearex
S15   	SR20DET 9901- Silvia COP COVER (13287-91F00 sloping)
RWD SR - japan import engines
Nissan Silvia S13, S14, S15 1990-2002
NIssan 180SX (RS13)

Japan Market North-South

North-south (horizontally-mounted) engines typically have:

* rocker cover breather pointing straight back
* distributor on the back of the head 
* throttle body facing back
* center exhaust outlet
M11   	SR20DE  9508-9811 Prairie
M12   	SR20DE  9811-0105 Prairie Liberty 
N30   	SR20DE  9710-0107 R'nessa
P10   	SR20DE  9002-9508 Primera 4-dr sedan
P10E  	SR20DE  9107-9611 Primera 5-dr hatchback
P11   	SR20DE  9509-0101 Primera 
P11E  	SR20DE  9611- Primera UK
R11   	SR20DE  9501-0008 Presea
U13   	SR20DE  9109-9511 Bluebird 
U14   	SR20DE  9601- Bluebird
V10   	SR20DE  9812- ラィーノ back+side vents
W10   	SR20DE  9005-9808 Avenir
W11   	SR20DE  9808- Avenir
WP11  	SR20DE  9709-0011 Primera Camino wagon
M12   	SR20DET 9910-0105 Prairie Liberty high-mount turbo
N14   	SR20DET 9008-9501 Pulsar
N30   	SR20DET 9710- R'nessa
U13   	SR20DET 9109-9511 Bluebird
W10   	SR20DET 9005-9808 Avenir
W11   	SR20DET 9809- Avenir
P11   	SR20VE  9509-0101 Primera 
P12   	SR20VE  0101- Primera
U14   	SR20VE  9601 Bluebird
WP11  	SR20VE  9709-0011 Primera Camino wagon
R10   	SR20D   9006-9412 Presea tubular dual-outlet exhaust
T30   	SR20VET 0010- X-Trail Top-plenum COP
U12   	SR20DT  8910-9108 Bluebird distributor
U12   	SR20D   8910-9108 Bluebird
WU12  	SR20D   9102-9109 Bluebird オーズィー
RB14  	SR20DE  9801-0008 Rasheen distributor, top box plenum
box-plenum: SR20DE
N15 SR18DE
tubular dual-outlet exhaust
B14 9509-
N15 9601-

North America

All FWD - distributor on back of head, no Variable Valve Timing

B13   	J/SR20DE Sentra
B13   	U/SR20DE Sentra
B14X  	SR20DE  
B14U  	SR20DE  
B15U  	SR20DE
1991-1994 B13 Nissan Sentra SE-R 140hp
1991-2002 Infiniti G20 (Nissan P10/P11) 140hp. 145hp from 2000-2002
1995-1998 B14X Nissan Sentra SE & SE-R (both 140hp)
1995-1998 B14U Nissan 200SX SE-R 140hp
1999-2001 B15U Nissan Sentra SE 145hp (roller rocker)


Red Top, Blue Top, Black Top, Black Cherry Top

12526_4fccd0ba28924.jpgUpload click to view 12526_4fccd0fde78d5.jpgUpload click to view

Red Top: S13/180SX/Bluebird/Pulsar 19891994, Garrett T25G turbo 
Black Top: S13/180SX 19941998, Garrett T25G turbo
Black Top: S14 19941998,  CVT, Garrett T28
Black Top: S15 19992002,  CVT, Garrett T28, Coil-pack, 6-speed
Silver Top: Avenir 19952001
Silver Top: R'nessa 1997-2001 


S13 underslung plenum | S14/S15 top plenum
KGrHqVk8E5YL1iEz0BOmGwmbkQ60_3.jpg 007-18.jpg

S13 - no VVT
S14/S15 JDM - black top CVT (cam bulge), DET has twin slope cam cover
FWD - no VVT, distributor on back of head
RWD - distributor on left side of head at front
S14/S15 DET - no distributor (COP ignition)

S13 SR20DE (distributor)
6027.jpgAlbum 6027

RWD SR20DET (4 coils and front CAS)

S13 19941998 Red Top SR20DET (no plug wires) aftermarket top-mount turbo manifold
8679.jpgAlbum 8679

S13 19941998 Red Top SR20DET COP, no VVT

S13 19941998 Black Top

S14/S15 19942002 Black Top

S14 SR20DE - JDM cam bulge (CVT variable valve timing)

S14 SR20DET - cam bulge w/twin sloping cam cover
COP ignition - no plug wires
3936.jpgAlbum 3936

S15 SR20DE - plug wires & distributor
Same as S14

S15 SR20DET - COP (no distributor) twin slope-cover
Same as S14

Intake Manifold

S13 curve-down | S14/S15 curve-up
15969.jpgAlbum 15969 23970.jpgAlbum 23970

high-mount turbo
sloping rocker cover
* COP Cover NEO VVL (unique)
* dual-lobe intake camshaft (VVL)
* Side-mount plenum (unique)
front sump
large ports deeply notched
GT2560 (T28BB) turbo

354px-Sr20vet.jpg img_1566.jpg


S14 SR20DE VVT - distributor on left side of head on front 
S14 SR20DET - COP, no spark plug wires
FWD SR20DE/DET - distributor at rear of engine


SR20 CAS vs SR20 CAS/Distributor

S13 distributor is on head, left side at front. CAS is inside distributor
6027.jpgAlbum 6027

S13 DET COP: four coils on top of engine (no distributor). CAS is on head left side at front
3760.jpgAlbum 3760


FWD SR20DET Bluebird U13 - distributor at back of cylinder head
400px-Nissan_SR20DET_U13.jpgWIKI go to Wikipedia

SR20 FWD distributor short type (RWD is long type)

Clutch & Flywheel

7013.jpgAlbum 7013


The 71-series gearbox speedometer drive works with the 1200 speedometer cable. If you need a longer cable, the Datsun 810 (200B) cable fits.

If the gearbox has an electronic sender for electronic speedometer, you can unbolt it and bolt in cable drive:

Cable drive (obtain from any 71C gearbox)

Silvia engines do not need the electronic speedometer signal. If it is installed, it can be used for overrun fuel-cut (increased fuel economy) plus the Silvia gauge cluster can be fitted to the 1200 dash.

See Main Article: Electronic Speedometer


See main article: EFI Wiring


See EFI Wiring#Alternator

 23100-35F10 A2T14694 + RS13 CA18DT
 23100-52F10 <> 23100-52F11
 23100-65F10 <> 23100-65F15 + RS13 SR20DE/DT
 23100-65F10 <> 23100-65F15

Feature Cars

14318.jpgAlbum 14318 12329.jpgAlbum 12329

Twincharged's '20 DAT'
10979.jpgAlbum 10979

See Main Article: Ricardo 1200

See main article: MYDRUG

journal of SR20DET Swap into Left-hand-drive 1200
3759.jpgAlbum 3759

See Main Article: Brynn

See main article: Mini_ME
5288.jpgAlbum 5288


Sunny B13 "Nissan Sentra" race car, converted to RWD using tube fram
8948.jpgAlbum 8948 12543.jpgAlbum 12543 12544.jpgAlbum 12544

FWD SR converted to RWD use
12514.jpgAlbum 12514 12513.jpgAlbum 12513 12512.jpgAlbum 12512 12511.jpgAlbum 12511 11152.jpgAlbum 11152 11151.jpgAlbum 11151

SR20 with Holley 2-BBl carburetor
10298.jpgAlbum 10298

SR20 with GSXR throttle bodies
18108.jpgAlbum 18108 18109.jpgAlbum 18109


Club member evey put together this SR-powered 1200 ute

Main: MIN712

10361.jpgAlbum 10361 10362.jpgAlbum 10362

Richard Swap

Some guys at Ozdat swapped an SR20DE into a 1200, costs were $1400 for the engine swap part ($2000 including the car, not including registration).

9713.jpgAlbum 9713

Ozdat forum: Richards SR20DE 1200 banga :)

 V I D E O  (click to view)


10 psi. r33 brakes, vl turbo diff with disc brakes, xy mirrors, holden door handles, plasma man inter cooler and radiator

SR20_ute-1.jpg SR20_ute-2.jpg SR20_ute-3.jpg SR20_ute-4.jpg SR20_ute-5.jpg SR20_ute-6.jpg SR20_ute-7.jpg SR20_ute-8.jpg

Yellow ute_man

ute-man's with r31 rear axle assembly, Commodor calipers, mini-tubbed to rail, half roll cage, S13 SR20DET (missing turbo) with Auto Gearbox

POST for sale

15577.jpgAlbum 15577 17275.jpgAlbum 17275 16275.jpgAlbum 16275

Variable Valve Timing

Nissan's version of VVT (variable valve timing) came in different flavors.

  • VCT (Variable Cam Timing) advances/retards the intake cam (S14/S15). Side-mounted solenoid, fits well, needs no ECU (can wire a dash switch to select low/high RPM cam timing)
  • VVL (Variable Valve Lift) uses two sets of cam lobes (SR20VET FWD/AWD only). rear-mounted solenoids, takes some work to fit in a 1200.

This solenoid is an on/off switch that switches to the hi-speed/lo-speed set of cam lobes. It is operated by the excellent factory ECU, or you can add a Megasquirt as a secondary ECU if for some reason you want to independently control the solenoid. You can also use MegaJolt as an RPM switch or even an MSD ignition controller to activate the solenoid. Or if you want to manually control it, use a toggle switch on the dashboard.

Is VVT worth it? N-VCT on S14 is only 15hp more than S13 so no biggie. However, Neo VVl (SR20VE/SR20VET) is a much bigger power increase. SR20VE with 190hp makes almost as much power as the QR25DE Spec-V (200hp) and far more power than SR20DE (128-160 hp).


All JDM S14 came with N-CVT (Nissan Variable Cam Timing). Europe S14 Turbo also came with it.

CVT is intake cam rotation (CVT does not change the lift). The cam retards at high RPM for freer flowing air charge.

23796-65F00 VALVE ASSY-VALVE TIMING CONTROL 9606- 23796-65F01 23796-1N515
23796-65F10 VALVE ASSY-VALVE TIMING CONTROL -9606 23796-6P000/23796-6P001/23796-6P002/23796-6P00A
* S14 JDM SR20DE

Electrical solenoid activates a hydraulic circuit machined into the head
174_587317f3e90a6.jpgPost 483149

Mount to side of head, near the front
174_587317fd8545e.jpgPost 483149 174_587317eaecb33.jpgPost click for topic

VCT can be spotted by the bulge at the front of the cylinder head.
17117.jpgAlbum 17117


The AWD SR20VE NEO and AWD SR20VET NEO came with the more advanced VVL (variable valve lift and timing), which is more advanced than the simple N-CVT (variable valve timing only) of the black top SR20DE. It is also more advanced than VTEC as it can switch intake and exhaust independently, although that doesn't make a huge difference in practice.

9418.jpgAlbum 9418

21700.jpgAlbum click to view 21701.jpgAlbum click to view

This controller solenoid is attached to the rear of the cylinder head. So cut a hole in the firewall to make room. Specially-built low profile versions are available if you want it to fit between the head and the firewall.

  • 1997-2000 P11 Primera (JDM) Te-V sedan or G-V wagon, 190 HP (139 kW)
  • 2001-2003 P12 Primera (JDM) 20V sedan or W20V Wagon, 207 HP (152 kW)
  • 1997-2000 U14 Bluebird (JDM) SSS-Z, 190 HP (139 kW)
  • 1997-2000 Y11 Nissan Wingroad (JDM) ZV-S wagon, 190 HP (139 kW)
  • 2001-2007 Nissan X-Trail GT (JDM) 280 PS
The 187 horses and the whiplash pull of variable valve lift (VVL) produced by the SR20VE motor teases the 140 horsepower SR20DE owners.

The SR20VET was 280 PS (30hp more than S15 SR20DET).

2827.jpgAlbum 2827 2829.jpgAlbum 2829

Unfortunately the AWD blocks are a variation of FWD blocks (see #RWD_vs._FWD_block).

Photo Index

Also see: SR Engine Photo Uploads
Click any thumbnail to see it full size in our Club Photo Album. Read details or post a comment!

985.jpg 1135.jpg 1137.jpg 1504.jpg 2769.jpg 4541.jpg 4661.jpg 4662.jpg 4663.jpg 4664.jpg 4665.jpg 4666.jpg 4667.jpg 4668.jpg 4802.jpg 4806.jpg 6021.jpg 6736.jpg 6981.jpg 6982.jpg 7253.jpg 8047.jpg 23970.jpg 25395.jpg

Retrieved from ""

This page has been accessed 139,123 times. This page was last modified 09:11, 19 May 2019. Content is available under Datsun 1200 Club.