20 August 2018

More than an old car #77: Datsun 280ZX

Datsun was at the forefront of the 70s as the oil crisis promoted a resurgence of smaller Japanese cars. While riding high on the success of the 240/260/280Z, Datsun proceeded to release the Nissan S130, also known as this 1980 Datsun 280ZX.

It was a complete redesign as it focused more on driver comfort rather than racing: changes included sound insulation, high-end audio system and more comfortable seats. The dashboard included a computerised read-out indicator that showed whether the lights were in working condition. The exterior design was less rounded and included a set of safety bumpers. However, people felt that this car betrayed their idea of what a Z car should be. This was partly due to its less powerful engine where it could be outrun by a Mazda RX7.

Despite the naming, there were both 2-litre and 2.8 litre engines offered: export markets got the 2.8 litre version while the Japanese domestic market had both versions. It was powered by a 2753cc L28E i6 engine, allowing it to reach a top speed of 203 km/h, with an acceleration of 9.4 seconds [0-100km/h]. It was 4340 mm long and weighed 1205 kg.

Production of the S130 ended in 1983 with about 420,000 made. They were actually sold here starting from 1979 by Tan Chong Motors, our local Nissan dealer. It received positive reviews from the local news as shown here. This unit has been imported recently from the UK and it has gone through 2 number plate changes. I recalled seeing the EQ plate on a Volvo P1800, so it seems they have the same owner. Z cars in general are very rare here, and perhaps you will be able to see it soon!

No comments:

Post a Comment