Saturday, August 7, 2010

Seen in Town Yesterday, Datsun 280ZX

Seen at my local train station yesterday, this absolutely mint 1982 or '83 Datsun 280ZX. I can't remember the last time I saw one of these that wasn't beat-up. This one, inside and out, could have been on a showroom floor. I like the fact it's a solid color, a gorgeous British Racing Green, maybe not original, but it suits the car perfectly. So many of these cars were two-toned when new in a very tacky manner, had louvered slats over the rear window, or were the longer, lumpier 4 seat version. This monotone T-topped 2 seater showed the clean lines off so much better. I've always preferred the original lines of the 240Z from 1970-72, the incongruous side window shapes of this second generation being particularly egregious to my eye, but in this trim, 30 years later, this 280ZX sure looks desirable.



  2. Friends of mine just out of high school restored a beautiful bright yellow 240Z. I spent many a night talking "shop" with them while they worked on that car, in the process becoming a big fan of it myself. I remember being disappointed when the 280Z came out, it had lost some of the panache of the original. But now, looking back at the history of the Z series, (and being reminded every time I see a fugly 300ZX on the road), this 280Z has me wishing that it was still being produced !

  3. I think the BRG looks terrific here. I have a late 70s car that needs painting. It's original color is a copper metallic and I know I should stay with that, but I've been downloading paint colors and I keep going back to the green. It looks right somehow. Even on a German car.

    The rear quarter - especially the quarter window of the the 280ZX reminds me a bit of the old DBS V-8. Maybe that was intentional, maybe I'm delusional. Take you pick.

    Oh, I forgot to say good morning/afternoon and thanks for the posts. I enjoy them all.

  4. Marius: I really like copper metallic on a car too! if it's German and metallic it usually meant it was an extra cost color, perhaps even with an early clear-coat. I have old BMW brochures of the original 530i and I'm pretty sure it was a copper metallic color. Sometimes original is best! and good afternoon to you too!

    PS: I wonder if Nissan would ever think about a back-to-basics sportscar, smaller than the current Z? I chopped a 180Z a long time ago, based on some small Nissan concept. I'll have to find it and see if it's still relevant or do a new one.

  5. While you all discuss the car and it's info, I will just sit here and drool because I think it is SO COOL! I LOVE it! Would like to know the story of the person who owns this!

  6. I remember seeing my neighbor bring a brand new one home some 31 years ago. Japanese cars back then were rare and I always thought it was a British car since they used a more western name, like Datsun. Some 29 years later in honor of the moment, I bought a spanking new 240sx se which was my dream car back in the day. The following year, my neighbor's son got the same car.

    The Altima coupe might be the closet thing today, but I'm dying to see them resurrect the name plate and give the company back its glory. I like some of the recent spy shots, but it needs a bit of the 70's feel to it.

  7. I remember those 240SXs. they were very cool back then! there wasn't a Nissan/Datsun dealer near me when I was looking for a new car in the early 80s so I ended up with a rwd '83 Celica GTS which I loved too. years later I bought a second rwd Celica, an '85 GTS hatchback. I bought it when it was 10 years old, but it wasn't in as good a condition as it looked at first!

  8. Casey and group,

    My brother and sister-in-law had a 240SX -- it was dark red with a faux convertible top and no rear quarter windows. I think it was an 89. Eventually, it developed an electrical glitch that drained the battery -- it was about 17 or 18 years old by then and they didn't want to spend the money to trace where the drain was so he gave it to a fellow he worked with. Their only car now is my Mom's last car - an 88 Plymouth Reliant -- it's got about 75,000 miles on it and it still runs well. It had 22,000 miles on it when Mom passed in 1998. The service writer called it "a shopping cart." And that was about it -- shopping and to church twice a week!

    Paul, New York City

  9. The 280ZX shown in the picture is a factory color. Just saying. I have a 1982, Series 2, the same color.