Skip to comments.$3,000 Sticker Price on New Datsuns Not Cast in Stone
Posted on 10/03/2012 8:59:24 AM PDT by Red Badger
TOKYO Among enthusiasts of a certain age, there was a notable flicker of excitement back in March when Nissan announced that the Datsun brand was making a welcome and long overdue comeback.
Starting in the late 1960s, Datsun hit a strong chord in the U.S. market with cool, well-conceived, good-value entries such as the Datsun 510 sedan and sexy 240Z coupe, effectively the Japanese BMWs of their day.
But Nissan has very different plans in mind in reviving Datsun for the modern era. The target is high-growth emerging markets such as Russia, Indonesia and India. A new family of low-cost, locally developed and manufactured products are on the way to fill that role and to sit beneath the Nissan brand.
"The vehicles will occupy different segments and markets for Nissan," a senior Nissan source told Edmunds on Tuesday. "(They will be) bringing a different set of attributes at different price points."
In Russia alone, it's estimated Datsun could contribute up to a third of Nissan's total sales.
Two cars will launch in 2014 and while a base sticker of $3,000 has been widely quoted, don't read too much into that, said the Nissan source, inferring that that was a general aim rather than a definitive, cast-in-stone sticker.
Still, that likely won't stop some in the U.S. to ponder wistfully that Datsun could one day make a return.
Datsun is still a credible brand, one that Nissan effectively threw away when it made its curious decision to kill Datsun in the U.S. in the early '80s and badge all cars thereafter as Nissans until Infiniti came along.
Edmunds says: It'll be a Datsun, but not as we know it.
I had 72 Datsun pickup like this one (mine was multicolored tye-dyed style). Broke down nearly every week, but I liked it................
In the 1970s my husband was assigned by his company in Houston to take over (and manage from afar) their branch in the UK. Expenses were out of control.
When he went over to inspect, he found that there was some embezzlement going on, plus some conflict of interest deals prevalent (hiring the wife of one of the managers to handle purchasing, for instance, and all shipping to be handled by the spouse of another manager.) In addition, they had OKAYed the purchase of high end Datsuns for EVERYBODY.
My husband fired them all and was left with a fleet of Datsuns which he later sold. Somebody presented him with a T shirt that said “Datsuns last longer than People” emblazoned on the front.
I had a 72 Datsun 510 wagon as my first car. Being a teenager, I spent much more attention to installing an underdash FM/cassette unit than the engine. It still ran like a top for a good two years. I sold it and the next week the guy wrapped it around a telephone pole. No one was hurt, luckily.
I could fill it up for $5.
Also the fold down seat was very handy on Saturday nights for . . . storing tools yeah that’s the ticket.
My first pickup was a Datsun. It was a rust-bucket, but it did what I needed it to do.
The Datsun truck was also the Chevy “LUV” (light utility vehicle). I bought one to do a 50-mile, round trip commute to Atlanta and back everyday.
It was a great ride, the only thing I ever had to do to it was to change the timing chain, which was very easy, as it was an easy and simple engine to work on.
When it snowed, which is rare in Georgia, I’d let15 pounds of air out of the back tires, toss a couple of concrete blocks in the bed for weights, and go almost anywhere I needed to go.
Taught my son to drive a straight-shift in that truck.
The only reason I finally sold it was, no air conditioning, which is almost a necessity in Georgia in the summer.
Mine was red.
The Chevy Luv was an Isuzu..........
A fledgling Japanese automobile company asked a German man, well known for his expertise in branding successful automobiles to suggest a name for its new car.
“We need a name no later than tomorrow,” said the Japanese official.
“Dat soon?” replied the surprised German.
And Nissan’s famous Datsun series was born.
You infer, I imply........
The German guy looked at them and asked "Dat Soon?"
I had a B210 (79?), but as I was stopped to turn, someone (in another B210) clipped the back end. We pulled over, and, while the police were filling out the paperwork, some drunk rammed into the back end and totaled it.
We replaced it with a new 310. Someone stole it and ran it into a tree, totaling it. The next time we went to a Datsun dealer, all the cars hid in fear. (Actually, we bought an Old Firenza next, but I really liked that 310.)
You beat me by a whole minute. I got distracted in the middle of the post.
"..I'll give ya a dollar each to git rid of the yelping oblong jihadist"....????..."oh wait"
Remember the Datsun “Honey Bees?”
My 1981 Datsun King Cab pickup was an engineering marvel. 4 cylinder with 8 spark plugs. High ratio of firing made for the smoothest 4 banger engine I’ve ever seen.
I remember the doors on those were about as thick as my hand.............
Okay, TWO hands........
My 280Z was among my favorite cars.
You’re right, of course...the Datsun was the Ford Courier...hey, it’s been 27 years...I got them confused. But, the LUV was a great little truck
Thanks for the correction, I’ve found that looking stupid once in a while keeps me humble. LOL
Bought a 240Z when they first came to the US. A goodly chunk of my annual salary at the time, especially since they were selling above sticker, but I said, “what the heck!”
(The Fairlady Z came out a year earlier in Japan and had the 2-liter straight six. My US model, a year later, had the 2.4 liter engine.)
Even visiting LA during that first year, it was an attention getter (read: chick magnet).
I spotted occasionally the even more exotic right-hand drive model, most likely brought back from Asia by a US serviceman. The Asian models had factory standard external mirrors far forward on the front fenders.
Learned to actually seriously drive in that car, at some cost to its sheet metal.
yes, Heck I remember the Dodge Super Bees!...........
I still have fond memories of my 260Z. One of the very best cars I have owned. It finally broke the differential after 3 years of hauling my race car and trailer.
My friend's Ford Courier pickup was made by Toyo Kogyo (Mazda).
There used to be a Fairlady Z around here. Some Air Force guy brought it over from Japan...........
Poor Frank. You’re batting a thousand. In the wrong direction.
The Ford Courier was a Mazda product.
I had one of those too — only it suffered every kind of abuse, and just kept on running. For all I know, it’s still running.
The Ford courier was a Mazda.........Want to try for three?.......
I had a ‘72 240Z. Took all the air pollution junk off the engine, put on a set of Cyclone headers, kicked the ignition timing up a couple of degrees. Got 30 mpg at 70 mph...and that was in 1973. Wish I still had it today.
Before you get to Chrysler, that was a Mitsubishi........
I had the same as my first NEW car. It was a great car. It only lasted 15 years before the floor on the passenger side started to rust out and the rubber hoses in the gas tank system started to deteriorate. It was time to sell it but I wish now I had kept it.
The earlier Datsuns were some of the most ugly, junky, funny looking cars ever seen on American highways.
I read that in the ‘60s they hired some high priced GM designers to design their next line of cars to make them more in tune with American taste. That was the beginning of the turnaround that led to their success.
Datsun was a name used to market cars in the USA. The company behind Datsun was Nissan but they wouldn’t put the Nissan name on the car line until they were a commercial success - couldn’t lose face you know.
Once the car line was successful they transitioned to the Nisson name.
Ok, I quit...I’ll be 67 this month, I guess I’m losing it.
Thats it, you did it this time, almost made me wet my pants laughing.
Do you remember the TV commercial, back when most of the small imports were 2 doors?
Four big lumberjacks were felling a huge redwood. The camera keeps cutting back & forth between the lumberjacks and a Datsun 510 parked nearby while the announcer describes the virtues of the 510.
The tree starts to fall, the four lumberjacks dash over to the parked 4 door Datsun, hop in and drive away, just as the tree hits the parking spot.
Text flashed on the screen:
“Datsun - 4 doors, no waiting!”
An old dumb joke is that a Nissan employee was told that they needed a name for their new American line, and they needed it tomorrow...and he replied “Dat soon?”
When it had 96K miles I ran my first & only autocross. The timer asked, "What do you have in that thing?"
"Stock 1600 engine with 96K, why?"
"You are in 3rd place, ahead of the Corvette!"
With 110K on the 510, I traded it for a '66 Alfa Giulia Sprint GT.
You both beat me by mile, Oh well! ;^)
Datsun's marketing was always at odds with the product. I had one of their earlier attempt at performance
NO just the standard instruments from the muggle version
only 100MPH? Yeah they claimed a 93mph top speed, but I once ran it out full scale (and it was later calibrated to be reading 2-3mph under true at that speed)
I had a 72 240Z. Took all the air pollution junk off the engine
Not to put you down, but it just shows where we have come since then.
Towing a race car with a 260Z!
LOL! Must have been a sight!
I had a 260z in the mid 1980’s with (aftermarket)triple Weber carbs.
the original Hitachi carbs were junk.
it was fun,but not real reliable.
510 sedans were pretty good handlers. Well balanced and responsive. But they would roll if you weren’t careful.
We took a 210 out to Road Atlanta out in the day, tipped it over square on its top, rolled it back over, and kept going. Top looked like a moonscape after that. LOL
Nice car pics.
BTW I sold my 510 and got a 73 BMW 2002. Now that was a fun car. I can still smell the leather.
The engine was saddled with exhaust port air injection and a throttle-lag controller.
lOL, the trailer and race car were about twice the length of the 260Z. It was a giant tail on a little dog.
“The engine was saddled with exhaust port air injection and a throttle-lag controller.”
Didn’t know that. Makes sense to pull. IIRC my dad had a BMW of about ‘75 that he disabled the air injection by simply taking off a dedicated belt. Come inspection time, he would put it on for the drive up.
Was yours a Cali model?
The Amazin' Mets were in the World Series and I found that the best way to hear the games was at 2AM on Armed Forces Radio happily ensconced at a small Japanese bed and breakfast with a refrigerator full of Kirin beer and other assorted amenities...it was wonderful.
The Mama-san decided I should sleep in after all that whoopin' and hollerin'all night,some of it actually about the ball game...but I digress.
I was supposed to be back aboard by 0800 for Quarters so Mama-san called me a cab and I knew it was gonna be close.
The cab was a Datsun Bluebird and the driver spoke no English so when I got in I mustered up my best pidgen Japanese and said,"Consterration Hayako!"
He took off downhill as fast as that little Datsun could go. Now the B&B was up in the hills and the pier was at the bottom...about half-way down the driver looked over his shoulder at me and said,quite coherently "No blakes!"
I have to admit I was a little concerned,especially when we ran through the gate at the pier while the driver was downshifting and exercising the parking brake for all it was worth.
The pier was a little shorter than the Connie,but we stopped just before we were gonna go for a dip in Sasebo Harbor...so I made it for Quarters after all.
The Mets won BTW>
I’m sure you had electric brakes for the trailer, being safe and all ;)