April 5, 2012
Three Daring Datsuns
You’ve probably heard by now that the Datsun brand is back. It’s going to be sold in Indonesia, India and Russia from 2014.
Datsun was a brand with a solid reputation for durability. But few Datsuns out there were as hardy as three plucky rally cars on show this week at Nissan HQ in Yokohama.
Datsun 2010 “Fuji”
The 19-day, 16,000 kilometer course circumnavigated the Australian continent. The Fuji was entered in Class A (under 1000cc).
The dent in the fender (below) was the result of a collision with a tree. When the car was restored by a team of Nissan volunteers the dent was kept.
Mount Fuji and some cherry blossoms painted on the back of the car. Two Datsun’s were entered into the race, this one and the Datsun 210 “Sakura”. You can see both here.
1970 Bluebird 1600SSS
The 1970 Bluebird 1600SSS was the winner of the 18th African Safari Rally.
Conditions for the race were abysmally wet and only nine cars finished the race.
Afterwards this car was flown back to Japan and put on display in Ginza.
The story of the win was immortalized in a film with Yujiro Ishihara, one of Japan’s best known movie stars.
Datsun won again in 1971 and 1973 with a Fairlady 240Z. This is the 1973 Fairlady . . . looking a bit worse for wear.
The 1971 car was driven by Edgar Hermann and Hans Schuller, who also drove the Bluebird the previous year.
The 5,000 kilometers across Africa took their toll.
The Fairlady lives on in the US as the 370Z
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