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Is This 1980 Datsun 280ZX the Perfect Project Car?

Is This 1980 Datsun 280ZX the Perfect Project Car?

This Datsun 280ZX looks pretty good, and its currently bidding for just $6,000

The Datsun 280ZX is the second generation model in Nissan’s Z lineup of sports cars, and it’s one of the cars that has put the Japanese brand on the radar of car enthusiasts. As a matter of fact, the 280ZX was so good that it even became Motor Trend’s Import Car of the Year in 1979. The good news is that there’s one that’s currently up for auction on Bring A Trailer, and its current bid price as of this writing is at a cool $6,000.

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2022 Datsun 240Z "The Lion's Rock Commission" By MZR Roadsports

2022 Datsun 240Z "The Lion’s Rock Commission" By MZR Roadsports

MZR Roadsports does for the Datsun 240Z what Singer does for the Porsche 911. Meet the perfect Datsun 240Z

It’s always nice when there is a company, specializing in restoring and reimagining a certain model. In this case, it’s the team from MZR Roadsports, and their choice of car is the Datsun 240Z – a Japanese icon with a global fan base. What the U.K.-based outfit is doing can best be described as a classic car with a modern twist. It’s safe to say, MZR Roadsports is for Datsun 240Z, what Singer is for Porsche 911, and this is the company’s take on what the perfect 240Z should be.

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20 Affordable Classic Cars You Don't Want to Pass Up

20 Affordable Classic Cars You Don’t Want to Pass Up

Our pick of 20 Classic cars (10 American Cars + 10 Imports) that can be had for under 20 grand

Now when people mention classic cars, most people automatically assume that it is an expensive hobby. While that may be true up to some degree, especially with regards to collector cars, i.e cars that were produced in extremely small numbers or Concours-worthy cars, pretty much anybody can get into the hobby of classic cars if you know where to look. 

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You'll See Some Great Classic Cars In this Video, But the Datsun Fairlady SR20DET Is Definitely The Highlight

You’ll See Some Great Classic Cars In this Video, But the Datsun Fairlady SR20DET Is Definitely The Highlight

Small car + plucky engine = epic thrills

Healthy and safety guides tell you that a car missing a full-width windshield should not be driven on public roads yet here we are, looking at a gorgeous open-top Datsun from the late ’60s that, courtesy of the SR20DET inline-four is so fast it literally blows your cap off.

And then there’s the soundtrack and the fact that you’re never fully in the car because the doors are low enough so that most of your upper body is exposed to the elements. Grassroots Garage gets a taste of this automotive guillotine.

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Car for Sale: Paul Newman's 1979 Datsun 280ZX Championship Racecar

Car for Sale: Paul Newman’s 1979 Datsun 280ZX Championship Racecar

The isn’t just any other racecar; it was driven by Paul Newman, who won multiple races with it

Paul Newman wasn’t just a brilliant actor, but also a race car driver. And, no, not the enthusiast type, but a proper race car driver with victories on the track under his belt. The 1979 season was one of the most interesting ones, especially because of the number of races he won.

He raced and won at Summit Point, Watkins Glen, Brainerd Minn, Lime Rock, and Road Atlanta. The car used by Newman for these races was a 1979 Datsun 280ZX. Over a decade after his demise, this car has come up for sale at motorcarclassics.com.

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This 1980 Datsun (Nissan) 280ZX Is Literally Brand New, Probably Worth a Fortune

This 1980 Datsun (Nissan) 280ZX Is Literally Brand New, Probably Worth a Fortune

Someone bought a 28-year-old Nissan 280ZX with just 49 miles on the odo!

Remember how the Lexus LF-A, even though discontinued since 2012, used to pop up at a handful of U.S. dealerships through 2018 and 2019? It’s a rare event, but once in a while old cars surface as brand-new several years after their production cycle ended.

Sometimes they are just a few years old, but other times they can spend decades hidden from sight. One such example is this Datsun 280ZX, a car built in 1980 but kept in pristine shape for almost 30 years.

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The Smoking Tire Takes A Modified Datsun 510 Wagon Out To The Canyons: Video

The Smoking Tire Takes A Modified Datsun 510 Wagon Out To The Canyons: Video

A fun box on wheels

To many car enthusiasts, the Datsun 510 is the quintessence of old-school cool. Produced between 1967 and 1973, the box-tastic 510 is a fantastic platform for creating any number of customized dream cars, from polished, chrome-trimmed cruisers, to stripped-down, lightweight speed machines. The owner of this particular ’72 wagon would agree. His focus was on performance, adding a roll bar and some serious suspension upgrades to help the plucky compact bring the goods at autocross events and track days. Under the hood is a 2.1-liter inline four-cylinder engine making around 130 horsepower and 130 pound-feet of torque, which is actually sufficient for a car that weighs just 2,000 pounds. Best of all, the majority of the work was done at home in the owner’s garage. All that and more is explained in this new One Take video from our friends over at The Smoking Tire.

Watching the video, you get a definite sense that this 510 is a labor of love, a work in progress that’s always improving, always changing, and always presenting new challenges. Matt Farah is a fan, calling it “responsive” and “lively,” especially praising the feel of slotting through the shifter. Overall, he even thinks it beats the venerated BMW E30 3 Series in several respects. The brakes seem a little sketchy though, requiring a “double-pump” action to actually get it to slow down. Then of course there’s the ever-present tear in the headliner seen towards the top of the interior camera angle… but hey, this is a project car. We call those things “character builders.”

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The Hoonigans Check Out A SR20'd 240Z, Nearly Crash: Video

The Hoonigans Check Out A SR20’d 240Z, Nearly Crash: Video

Look out for that wall!

I love a good engine swap. There’s just something pleasurable about finding the unexpected waiting for you when you lift the hood, like unwrapping a Pop-Tart to discover a fresh slice of cake. In this particular case, playing the part of Pop-Tart wrapper is a classic and very orange Datsun 240Z, while the cake is a Nissan SR20 engine. It’s a popular swap, and for good reason – the Z looks incredible, it isn’t too heavy, and it’s RWD from the factory, while the SR20 is stout and well-suited to living with high levels of boost. Larry Chen’s ride is one fine example of all these characteristics, as evidenced in this episode of Daily Transmission from the fine folks over at Hoonigan headquarters.

Power from the boosted four sits at 300 ponies and 300 pound-feet of torque at the wheels, which isn’t bad for a car that weighs a little over 2,000 pounds. Providing the extra air is a Garrett GT28 turbo (a.k.a. the Disco Potato). The set-up was pulled from an old Formula Drift car, and it looks perfectly at home sitting in the Z’s engine bay. With the hood open, the boys get pretty nerdy, delving into the various little factoids and motivation behind the build. But things get really serious towards the end when the orange Z starts burning rubber, and, well, let’s just say look out for the cement.

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The Smoking Tire Gets Acquainted With A Rally-Spec 1973 Datsun 240Z: Video

The Smoking Tire Gets Acquainted With A Rally-Spec 1973 Datsun 240Z: Video

Rally car will compete at the 2016 Peking-To-Paris race

The 10,000-mile, 37-day Peking-to-Paris rally is without question one of the toughest races in all of motor sports. That has held true since the first race happened in 1907 and continues to be the case in its sixth iteration that’s scheduled to start on June 12, 2016. Needless to say, not everyone has the nerve to participate in the race. But there are those like Chris Bury who are embracing the ridiculous challenge of the rally race. But not only is he participating, this dude is racing with a 1973 Datsun 240Z. Of course, the car has been heavily tuned to withstand the rigors of the P2P rally race.

Bury and his father spent the last year restoring and modifying the 240Z to full rally specification and as The Smoking Tire’s Matt Farah finds out, it really has everything you need to conquer the 10,000 mile race. It’s got a full rally suspension, skid plates, off-road tires, a 26-gallon fuel cell, a period-correct limited-slip differential, and a bored out 2.7-liter straight six engine that not only produces 195 horsepower and 189 pound-feet of torque, but is also running on low compression to ensure that it doesn’t get stymied by bad fuel during the race. Seems like a smart idea if Bury doesn’t want to get stuck in the middle of the Gobi Desert.

According to Farah, the 240Z is currently in transit to China, but before it got shipped off, he got to spend some time behind the wheel of the rally racer with Bury riding shotgun. The whole episode is an interesting one because of what Bury plans to accomplish when the Peking-to-Paris rally race starts in June. It’s hard to imagine finding anyone who would willingly participate and even rebuild a stock 240Z specifically for the occasion.

All the best, Chris Bury. Here’s to hoping you get to see the checkered flag at the Place Vendome on July 17.

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Sung Kang Shows Off His Datsun 240Z To Jay Leno: Video

Sung Kang Shows Off His Datsun 240Z To Jay Leno: Video

Fast and Furious star knows a thing or two about customization

Sung Kang, better known to all of us as Han from the Fast & Furious franchise, was perfectly suited for his role in those movies because, unbeknownst to most people, he’s actually a pretty hardcore car guy in real life. That much was evident when he recently paid a visit to Jay Leno’s Garage to show off his resto-modded 1973 Datsun 240Z, which he proudly calls the Fugu Z.

Origin of the name notwithstanding, the story of Kang’s 240Z is incredibly fascinating. He scooped it up on Craigslist, thinking that it would be a cool project he could do with some of his car-loving buddies. The project escalated pretty quickly and soon enough, fellow car enthusiasts from all over the world began assisting Kang and his crew on the build. At some point, Greddy even got in on the fun and helped Kang turn the 240Z into a bonafide, wide-bodied track car that’s powered by a naturally aspirated RB26 inline-six engine sourced from a 1994 Nissan GT-R. Yep, the turbos were taken off the engine, but if you watch Leno driving it towards the end of the episode, you’re going to understand why Kang opted for a naturally aspirated option.

Nobody could seem to agree on what kind of output it has – 233 and 245 horsepower were being thrown around – but for the most part, everybody, including Leno himself, was in agreement that what initially started as a small-time build turned into what can only be described as a labor for love from Kang, his buddies, and car enthusiasts from all over the world.

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1971 Datsun 1600 Pickup Finds Its Rightful Home In Nissan's Heritage Center: Video

1971 Datsun 1600 Pickup Finds Its Rightful Home In Nissan’s Heritage Center: Video

Proud owner of the pickup truck called his baby "Sweet Pea".

This is the story of a 1971 Datsun 1600 that somehow found its way from the farmlands of Nashville, Tennessee to Nissan’s famous Heritage Collection where it now sits proudly with its peers. If its journey sounds a little too much like a story arc for a Hollywood movie, it’s because it is, at least to some extent.

See, the truck’s original owner is an 80-year old man named Mavin Askew. For the past 42 years, the 1600 has had no other owner other than Askew so naturally, there’s a lot of sentimentality attached to the truck. Ask loved the 1600 so much that he gave it the nickname “Sweet Pea” on account of its body color.

But, just as fate would have it, Askew met Nashville businessman Dan Tito when the latter inquired about the availability of Sweet Pea. After initially saying that he would think about selling it, Askew ran into Tito for a second time in the same gas station. That conversation eventually resulted in Askew finally letting go of his most prized possession.

For his part, Tito ownership of the 1600 didn’t last long. Upon realizing that space would be an issue for the pickup truck, Tito reached out to Nissan, who in turn purchased the pickup in order to have sit inside its Heritage Collection. It’s an incredible story of two men who thought highly enough of the pickup truck to understand its significance to the Japanese automaker.

It’s a fascinating story that got the happy ending it deserved.

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2015 Datsun GO-cross Concept

2015 Datsun GO-cross Concept

Nissan made a prudent business decision with the relaunch of its Datsun brand last year. The thinking was that, while any company selling cars in North America, Europe, Japan or Korea would have to fight tooth and nail for every little share of the market, the company that learns not to treat emerging markets as an afterthought could dominate them with very little effort. So, Datsun was relaunched, this time to actively sell to markets in India, Russia, Indonesia and South Africa. Datsun isn’t completely unchallenged in these markets, but the fact that 420 new Datsun dealers have been added to the network since the brand’s relaunch, shows that there was a lot of room for growth.

So, Datsun is jumping on these markets before anybody else gets the idea, and also looking into expanding into more. A wider variety of products will help with this, so a new Datsun GO-Cross concept was just unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show. The concept is a crossover based on the existing GO+ hatchback. This is because, at the moment, the closest thing to an appropriate crossover that

Renault

Nissan has for these markets is the Dacia Duster, and that just isn’t quite right.

Continue reading to learn more about the Datsun GO-cross Concept.

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