Nissan / Datsun sold a ton of these cars in North America. They were solid, yet unexciting. The 1.4 liter engine produces 70 HP. That's enough to get the B-210 to 60 in 13.5 seconds. It can easily get 35 MPG. It has a theoretical top speed of 100 MPH.
The interior is a typical 1970s Japanese interior. It is well constructed, but the materials look and feel cheap. The dashboard has a few quirky angles and features, but it's well laid out. The seats are thin, but comfortable enough for short commutes.
There is something about the body that I can't put my finger on. Something that's not right. It's neither ugly nor good looking. It has all the design cues a sporty car should have, but it doesn't look sporty. I even did a search for pictures of these cars without the awful US-spec 5 MPH bumpers. It still didn't look right. Over-styled? Under-styled? I don't know. It's as if the Nissan / Datsun stylists knew where the wanted to go, but couldn't figure out how to get there.
The B-210 will run forever. The bodies, however, are damn-near water soluble. Most of these cars were scrapped because of voracious rust that rivaled the Italian cars of the day.
This car is a remarkable survivor.
The oh-so-seventies turquoise body looks rust and dent free. The interior looks clean, but the dashboard padding is cracked and I suspect the front seat covers are hiding some damage. (Might as well leave them there. The extra millimeter or two of padding will be appreciated.) The engine has had some recent work and is said to run well.
The asking price is $2700.00, which is reasonable for a well cared for 38 year old car with 99,000 miles on it. (The seller mentions something about "DMV back fees." Being from the east coast, I don't understand all of the California automobile laws. I assume that someone has to pay those fees before the car can be transferred to the new owner. That may add to the price of the car... Someone needs to write a "California Car Laws For Dummies" book.)
These days, it seems like all old Japanese cars are purchased by kids and tuners. They are modified (sometimes very poorly) to within inches of their life. This car is too good, too original, to receive that fate. I'm just not sure it's interesting enough to escape it.
I hope there is a Nissan / Datsun fan out there who can appreciate this car for what it is.
Located in Brentwood / Oakley, CA, click here to see the Craigslist ad.