The Datsun 210 went into production in October 1957 and continued through until September 1958. In an odd marketing move the new 210 was released at the same time as the new Datsun 114 sedan. The 114 was the direct replacement for the previous Datsun 113, and the Datsun 210 entered the range as a higher specification version of the 114.
The body of the Datsun 210 is pretty much identical to the one used for the previous Datsun 113 model, the only major difference being a slightly altered grille support panel at the front of the car that allows the new grille to protrude forward slightly. The new grille design features three large horizontal bars, and a raised section at the top that incorporates a red DATSUN badge.
The other distinguishing feature of the Datsun 210 is that it has stainless steel side strips that start at the front of the car and finish about 4/5's of the way along the front door. The 113, and the new 114 had no side strips, and the later 211 had full length strips.
Side mounted badges in the car say DATSUN 1000. There is a round badge in the centre of the dashboard that says DATSUN 1000.
When the Datsun 210 first went into production in October 1957 it used the same indicator/flasher system as the previous 113, which consisted of a double ended bullet shaped indicator assembly that sat on the top of the front guard/fender, as seen in the photo above. It had no indicators at the front of the car, or at the back, the rear of the car had only two stop lights.
The Datsun 210 is a landmark vehicle in Nissan's history, for two very different reasons. Firstly, it was the first Japanese car to enjoy any real success as an export. The 210 marked Nissan's first attempts to sell cars in substantial quantities outside of Asia. In 1957 Nissan exported 739 vehicles, in 1958 export sales jumped to 3232, most of which were 210s, including 1318 sold in the USA.
But perhaps more significantly, the Datsun 210 had the honour of becoming the first Japanese car to have motorsport success in the international arena. In 1958 Nissan entered two Datsun 210s into the torturous Mobilgas Trial, an epic 16250 kilometre treck around Australia. Out of the 67 cars entered only 36 made it to the finish line. Two of those 36 cars to finish were the two Datsun 210s, with "Fuji-Go" the red car, coming first in it's class. This stunning result from an unknown car maker helped establish a reputation for reliability for the brand, even before the first cars went on sale in Australia in 1960. By 1963 more Datsuns were being sold in Australia than the United States.
The standard sedan .
The Datsun W210 was the station wagon version of the Datsun 210 sedan. It was introduced at the same time as the sedan and features a two piece cargo door, with a framed glass section that opens upwards, and a lower section that folds downwards.
The M210 is an ambulance / medical specialty vehicle based on the W210 wagon.
The Datsun 114 was a lower specification version of the 210. The 114 featured an 860cc side valve engine and was sold at a lower price than the 210. Information about this model can be found on the Datsun 114 page.
A range of small commercial vehicles based on the Datsun 210 sedan were also produced at the same time. This range of vehicles, called the 220 series, included a pickup truck and a light van, as well as other variants. More information about these vehicles can be found in the Datsun 220 section.
Length - 3880mm
Width - 1466mm
Height - 1500mm
Wheelbase - 2220mm
Weight - 895kg
Top speed - JDM 95kph
- Export 120kph
Transmission - Column change 4 speed
JDM - 5.57 : 1
Export - 5.13 : 1
OHV 4 Cylinder
Model - C
Capacity - 988cc
Bore & Stroke 73x59mm
Power - 37bhp@4600rpm
Torque - 49ft/lb@2400rpm
Compression - 7.5 : 1
Carburettor - Hitachi Solex VA-26-6 26mm single throat down draught
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