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Japan Baddest Bluebird "Datsun 510 GTR"

Updated: Jan 20, 2022

The Datsun 510 is one of the most innovative cars that Japan has produced.

It was very well built, sporty, and very fast when raced. Sold from 1968 to 1973, and offered outside the U.S. and Canada as the Datsun 1600.

While it always had its fans in its home country,

it quickly gained a reputation in the US, both on the street and on the race track, becoming one of the first enthusiastic Japanese imports in the USA.

A mid-1960s Bluebird SSS, a compact sports sedan known in the US as the Datsun 510 was the predecessor of the current GT-R and one of the first GT-Rs.

The affordable performance combined with simple mechanicals has helped the Datsun 510 remain a popular automotive enthusiast's car for nearly 50 years.

One advantage of the early Datsun cars is that many of the parts were interchangeable — engines, transmissions, and suspension setups, for instance, they were all similar enough to swap with minor modifications. This allowed the Datsun 510 to be easily upgraded from the 1.6l - L16 engine, to the 1.8l - L18 engine, and later to the 2.0L L20B engine, and to go from the four-speed manual transmission to the five-speed transmissions made available for the early cars!

Its positive reputation also led to Nissan re-using the 510 model name later on.

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