Tag Archives: Datsun

Why You Should Know Mr. K

Why You Should Know Mr. K

 Datsun 280zIf you are familiar with the “Z-cars” like the Datsun 260Z that defined the Japanese sports car evolution, then you are familiar with Mr. K, also known as Yutaka Katayama. This man is responsible for designing Japanese sports cars and delivering them to a hungry American audience. Without Mr. K, the world of automobiles would be very different.

Nissan and the Sad Little Cars

The Datsun 280Z is the Best of the Z-cars

The Datsun 280Z is the Best of the Z-cars

Datsun 280Z In the late 1960s, Datsun released the 240Z to the public. This moment changed the way that American drivers looked at Japanese imports. Prior to the 240Z, Japanese cars were small, economical, and boring. The 240Z brought sleek design, speed, and excitement. The 260Z was equally as good with a few updates, but the real winner was the Datsun 280Z.

Third Time is a Charm

Don’t Forget about the Trail Blazers

Don’t Forget about the Trail Blazers

'72 Datsun 240ZNo, not the Chevy SUV, but the cars that paved the way. The cars that were deemed the first of their kind and spawned a huge following. While we look at new cars and the amazing things that they can do, let’s take a quick look back a few of the trailblazers that have opened doors:

Datsun 240Z: Prior to the release of the Datsun 240Z, Japanese cars were small, compact, and somewhat ugly. The Datsun 240Z was the first speedy Japanese car to hit American shores. These cars were sexy and fast and drivers loved them. The Datsun 240Z paved the way for other gorgeous Asian cars like the Scion FRS, the Nissan Skyline, and the Toyota Celica.

1970s Television Heroes and their Rides

1970s Television Heroes and their Rides

'63 Ford GalaxieIn the 1970s, television viewers were treated to some fun characters, like the Bionic Woman, Wonder Woman, and the cast of Hawaii 5-0. The characters were bigger than life and they drove iconic cars. These are a few of the best 1970s characters and their vehicles:

The Datsun Revival

The Datsun is a car model which existed years before it gained popularity here in the United States. Originating in 1931 under the DAT Motorcar Co., this nameplate was spelled differently and was largely popular in Japan. It wasn’t until after World War II that the car made its debut in the States. Although it would become known as an economy car , yet a classy one, the logo for the Datsun was based on the Japanese flag, which features a red circle in the middle of a white flag.

Datsun 240Z

During the 1970’s, this car easily set the record for the best-selling sports car of all time with more than 540,000 built.  In 2004, it was even ranked as #2 on the list for best sports cars of the 1970’s.  What is it you ask?  It is the Datsun 240Z.  The Datsun 240Z had many obstacles standing in its way to getting designed and built.  In the late 1950’s, Yutaka Katayama was hired by the Nissan company to help market their cars.  He was the first person to convince Nissan that adding a racing program would be a good way to build the Nissan name, and he was right.  This didn’t sit well with his bosses because he went around them to their bosses to pitch the idea, so they decided to give him a job in North America – Datsun Marketing Manager For North America.  You see, the market for Japanese cars in America was slim because most people didn’t want to buy Japanese-made cars after World War II, so even though the name Datsun was put on all Nissan cars sold in North America, it was figured that Mr. Katayama would stay out of the lime-light with this challenging position.  His bosses couldn’t have been more wrong.