1977 Datsun B210 fastback.

May 24, 2014

1977 Datsun B210 hatchback.
1977 Datsun B210 hatchback.
1977 Datsun B210 hatchback.


Anonymous said...

"So don't front, MC Ren, I remember when you drove a B210." -- Ice Cube

captaingizmo54 said...

Rhodan meets rocket boy! Even though the styling was a bit confusing, these cars still had
that legendary bulletproof driveline that would run forever even if the body didn't. There aren't
many of these left, Justin's tin worms got the rest. In the midwest, there were street rodders
who swapped the engine and tranny into early Fords with moderate success. Saw one of these
Datsun-powered Model A's at a local car show back in the '70's. This car got more attention
than anything else there. Don should like this. They kept it simple and stupid.

Donkey Hoaty said...

Captaingizmo: "Rhodan meets rocket boy"

LOL! Well-said! (I'm not sure who Rocket Boy is...but the name gives sufficient-enough clue in contrast to Rhodan!)

These cars present a philosophical contradiction to me: On the one hand, I hate tinny little death-trap cars...'specially when they're FUGLY; On the other hand, these cars were so mechanically simple and straight-forward, they were like the ultimate in economical transportation. Cheap to drive- easily getting 35MPG; cheap to maintain (even a mechanical doofus could pretty much fix anything on one of these...everything was easily accessible; and virtually no electronics or Rube Goldberg contraptions as alternates!)- and if treated with even lax care, hardly anything would ever go wrong; the drive-train was light and minimalist...but made of real steel; and quite bulletproof.
A kindly old-man whom I knew used to drive one, and I rode with him in it several times- I remember marveling at the economy....but just being utterly repulsed at the idea of having to actually drive one!
Considering that today, you would need a tiny "Smart Car" or a rather pricey TDI to get the MPGs of these old Jap cars....(but you'd never get the cheap maintenance/bulletproofness/longevity of these B210s), I think we have seen a departure from automotive sanity as we've gotten further and further away from the concepts embodied by these motorized piles of Japanese rust :D

captaingizmo54 said...

Right you are Don, My parents owned a 4-door (can't recall the model number) that would give
you an honest 40 MPG all day long. Within the first year or so, that car started rusting away.
Once Dad saw that, that little rice burner was history. And this happened even though the car
had been Ziebarted! As time passed, I used to see these things held together with Duct Tape
and bailing wire. And even then, these little wonders continued to run strong. So long little
Datsun, may you rust in peace.

Janet said...

I had a '76 or '77 B210 wagon in around 1983. It was red with a white interior, a 4 speed manual. I used to drive the heck out of it and blew it up on the QEW in Toronto.

captaingizmo54 said...

Hello, Janet! Welcome to this humble blog! You must've had some lead foot when
you did the impossible--killing that bulletproof driveline. Save for you, I don't recall
anyone else who ever did this unimaginable feat! As I recall, the cylinder head was
this engine's Achilles' heal. Head warpage and cracking of same sent many a good
Datsun to the crusher. Add to that, the horrendously expensive cost of parts, and you
have the makings of a real disaster. A new head would have set you back at $1,000.00
or more. A good friend of mine scrapped a perfectly good 510 wagon simply because
he didn't have $290.00 to buy a new starter. Sounds dumb today, but in the early '80's
that was about 2 week's pay. To bad Datsun didn't allow their parts to be re-corred
we might see a few more of these today.

captaingizmo54 said...

BTW Janet, I listened to a radio play called "The Last Broadcast." It was about
nuclear war with Russia. I take it that you live in Toronto, and I was wondering if
the places they mentioned in Toronto really do exist. They mentioned The McLaren
Building at the University Of Toronto, Young Street, Bay Street, Bluehuurst Ave.,
The Doverin Tower, and the radio station itself, CKFD. I've heard this play several times and i often wondered if it freaked you folks out when they first aired it on
the radio.

Justin said...

Love the pinstripes and hubcap combo. What a survivor!

Richard said...

Wow I remember seeing these cars in the early 80's. I think I remember seeing a lot of them in the color yellow & blue. I think there was one I usually saw black pint stripes known as the (Honey Bee) The old commercial jingle---" Datsun we are driven"

captaingizmo54 said...

Good eye Richard! They did indeed make a model called the Honey Bee. As you
mentioned, these were painted Yellow with Black stripes and the little bee cartoon on
the rear quarters. These cars were only available only as 2-door coupes only. If you
drove one sensibly, you could get at least 50 MPG out of it. This came at a cost how-
ever, the only options on this car were a radio and a heater. The only tranny you could
get was a 5-speed manual. If you wanted A/C, you were out of luck. I saw one of these being driven by a newspaper carrier in the early '90's. On weekends, the owner
removed the right front and rear seats so that all the papers would fit inside it. The
owner told me that she averaged 41MPG with it. I can still see it squatting on the
rear axle as she left our substation! Like our feature car, these are very rare due to
those pesky tinworms.

Ben Piff said...

Hey guys, I'd be interested to know how much you've tried our search function...because we caught a Honey Bee back in 2011! It was also selected as a Best of 2011.

RK - No relation said...

Fastback and side window remind me of 1970 Sunbeam Rapier or Alpine GT as ours was known in Canada. Less stylish than the Datsun but great old English car character

RK - No relation said...

Hi captaingizmo54:

These places in Toronto do mostly exist; Yonge Street (sounds like young) but never heard of this Doverin Tower. We have CN tower and a number of buildings with tower in the name. Never heard of this radio play though. I will try to hear it somehow

AM Gold said...

YAY!!! My beloved sunny boy has finally made 'Old Parked Cars'. I am so excited!

This photo must have been taken in the 3 days that I didn't have my orange 'Friends of PIR' sticker in the drivers-side back window. (I had removed the old one to put on a fresh one.)

Thanks for the compliments on this glorious machine. My loving boyfriend painted the wheels my favorite orange to compliment the blue, and we kept the tasty 510 hubcaps that were on him at purchase. I am saving my pennies for some slotted mags someday, and have plans to do a subtle rake / bigs & littles in 2015.

Despite his dusty appearance in this photo, I try to take great care of the car and really really enjoy driving him, too. It's always great to get a random thumbs-up or a stunned and gaping open mouth by folks stunned to see this survivor.

He is a 5 speed dog leg, if anyone wondered, and it still gets fantastic gas mileage.

Thanks again for taking the photo and all the nice comments. Look for me at the Canby meet this summer and say hello.

Best Regards,
DJ AM Gold