User Login    
 + Register
  • Main navigation
Login
Username:

Password:


Lost Password?

Register now!
Fast Search
Slow Search
Google Ad


[Datsun 1200 encyclopedia]

Sneak Preview of new Datsun 1200

Revision as of 07:25, 8 August 2019; view current revision
<-Older revision | Newer revision->

Datsun 1200 encyclopedia | Recent changes | Edit this page | Page history | Switch to MediaWiki mode

Printable version | Disclaimers | Privacy policy | Current revision
Category: Magazine Articles

DATSUN 1200 COUPE Road Test — Road & Track (November, 1970 pages 78-80)

Contents


3733.jpgAlbum click to view 27597.jpg 27599.jpgAlbum click to view 27598.jpgAlbum click to view

the Mustang-like grille

Datsun 1200 Coupe

An Excellent car — a really practical little fastback at a good price

16435.jpgAlbum click to view

COMPARISON DATA
VehicleDatsun 1200 CoupeFiat 850 CoupeOpel Kadett Rallye 1.9
List price$1866$2102$2504
Curb weight, lb164516241990
0-60 mph, sec15.117.912.1
Standing 1/4-mi19.621.018.3
. . . Speed at end676474
Panic stop from 80 mph, % g839481
Fade in 6 stop from 60 mph, %.6010028
R&T wear index618658
R&T steering index0.911.100.97
Fuel economy, mpg283121

The Datsun Sunny, as it was rather quaintly called, was a 988-cc car introduced by the Nissan people at the 1966 Tokyo Show. The name was later changed to Datsun 1000 and although it was marketed in Canada, the model was considered — correctly, we think — too small for the U.S. market. Now the displacement has been increased to 1771 cc, the name to 1200, power is up from 62 to 69 bhp and restyled bodywork is available in 2-door sedan and fastback coupe versions. Suddenly it's a lot of car, fast for its class, and a bargain among bargains with very few significant faults.

16108.jpgAlbum click to view

We tested an eye-catching apple green coupe which, after some criticism of minor styling details, we have to say is an appealing, alert-looking little machine. The body form is very good but we don't much like the Mustang-like grille, side vents (though functional) and wheel covers. (The Toyota Corolla sprinter, similar in concept, manages to be handsomer in its own right without such cliches.) It's on the inside that the Datsun 1200 really comes into its own, with excellent, fully adjustable front seats and a fold-down rear seat that allows uninterrupted cargo space 54 inches in length and 17 cu ft in volume (below the level of the windows — it can be nearly twice that if you're wanting to tote home a potted palm and vision to the rear isn't required). The deck opening is standard size, not including rear window as on a Vega coupe or 240Z, but bulky objects can be loaded without too much difficulty. Upholstery is of good-quality black vinyl with slightly fussy textures and scrollwork, while the sun visors are on the flimsy side.

The instrument panel is somewhat simplified with more warning lights than gauges (especially on our test car, which lacked the optional tachometer and clock), but it's well arranged, with some controls doing efficient double duty. The ventilation is especially convenient with a pull-out vent knob and a combined heater-fan lever. The turn signal lever also works the high and low headlight beams, while the reclining seat handle also serves as the backrest release; wonder of wonders, it's spring loaded and flips forward by itself, which is really appreciated when you're carrying something in the other hand. Datsun has accomplished that seemingly simple but all-too-rare combination of easy- and fast-winding window cranks, but the glove box opens awkwardly with no real handle to grip. The rear quarter windows pivot outward for improved air flow; it's nice to note that all the side window framing is of black anodized aluminum, a relief from the usual chrome. All-around vision is good, unobscured by the headrests when in their down position. The windshield washers are tremendously effective.

Driving the car is enlightening. How can a little 4-cyl engine, working hard, remain so smooth and quiet? Datsun engineers deserve great praise for this (as well as close attention from other makers who hope to compete in the small car market — we could mention domestic newcomers with distinctly less refined engines). Because the Datsun is a very light car — the curb weight is only 1645 lb — its 69 bhp and 70 lb-ft of torque make it very lively; much livelier, with only a driver aboard, than our test figures indicate. The ratios are well chosen for strong pulling with a minimum of shifting; no conscious effort to keep the engine speed up is needed. The gear lever has faily long throws but the gears are just where you expect them to be and the action is very smooth. The clutch effort is very light, especially compared to the high, firm brake pedal.

16179.jpgAlbum click to view

Suspension is by MacPherson struts in front and live axle with semi-elleptic leaf springs in back. Handling and ride are both excellent. The steering is light but positive; we would prefer to give it a little more feel by fitting beefier tires — perhaps the optional radials will accomplish this. Behavior through corners is neutral, meaning that you can drive through a sweeping corner with the tail sliding under full control, a fun excercise if you feel like doing it, and adhesion is high even without radials. There is the expected body lean but hard cornering is predictable and safe. Through traffic there can hardly be a more maneuverable family car and with the upright seating the view of the road, so valuable for such maneuvering, is much better than that of a sports car. The front seats offer little side support but are comfortable; body pitching over abrupt surfaces is mild. For both cornering and comfort, the Datsun's suspension is really doing its job.

The brakes, discs in front and drums at the rear, are strong, but a lot of credit for the quick stopping must go to the low weight. The panic stop from 80 mph was straight and true, with excellent control, but fade becomes a factor with repeated use — pedal effort was up 60 percent by the 6th stop from 60 mph.

All in all, the Datsun 1200 is a really driveable, fully usable car. While its busy engine and dimensions keep it from being suitable for long cross-country trips, it's a rational and sporty family car that's hard to improve upon for around-town daily use. It's economical in first cost ($1866) and fuel econonomy (28 mpg) and gives every indication of being economical in that more important way — dependable service. It's big enough for a family of four (with more backseat room than some Ponycars) and with the rear seat folded down has St. Bernard-size cargo capability. Most important, everything seems to have been designed for convenience and ease of operation — it's a friendly car that does almost everything well.

16434.jpgAlbum click to view

specifications sheet

___________________________________
Road Test - Datsun 1200 Coupe

. . . . . . . . PRICE
List price, all POE...........$1916
Price as tested...............$1916
Price as tested includes whitewall
. tires, adjustable seatbacks,
. folding rear seat (std); delivery
. & handling ($50)

. . . . . . . IMPORTER
Nissan Motor Corp, USA
137 E. Alondra Blvd.
Gardena, Calif. 90246

. . . . . . . ENGINE
Type...................ohv inline 4
Bore & stroke, mm.......73.0 x 70.0
. Equivalent, in ...... 2.87 x 2.76
Displacement, cc/cu in ...1171/71.5
Compression ratio.............9.0:1
Bhp @ rpm ................69 @ 6000
. Equivalent mph................100
Torque @ rpm .............70 @ 3600
. Equivalent mph.................59
Carburation............1 Hitachi 2V
Type fuel required..regular, 91 oct
Emission control........engine mods

. . . . . . DRIVE TRAIN
Transmission.............4sp manual
Gear ratios: 4th (1.00)......3.90:1
. 3rd (1.40).................5.46:1
. 2nd (2.17).................8.46:1
. 1st (3.76)................14.66:1
Final drive ratio............3.90:1

. . . . . CHASSIS & BODY
Layout.....front engine, rear drive
Body/frame...............unit steel
Brake type:. . 8.37-in disc front,
. 7.80 x 1.38 drum rear
. Swept area, sq in.............208
Wheels..........steel disc, 12 x 4J
Tires...........Bridgestone 6.00-12
Steering type....recirculating ball
. Overall ratio..............15.0:1
. Turns, lock-to-lock...........3.4
. Turning circle, ft...........26.9
Front suspension:. . . . McPherson
. struts,. lower lateral arms, coil
. springs,. tube shocks,. anti-roll
. bar
Rear Suspension:. live axle, semi-
. elliptic. leaf. springs,. tube
. shocks

. . . . . . ACCOMODATION
Seating capacity, persons.........4
Seat width, front/rear.............
. . . . . . . . . . . 2 x 12.0/40.0
Head room, front/rear.....36.0/35.0
Seat back adjustment, degrees....70
Driver comfort rating
. (scale of 100):
. Driver 69 in. tall:............95
. Driver 72 in. tall.............75
. Driver 75 in. tall.............70

. . . . . INSTRUMENTATION
Instruments:. 100-mph speedometer,
. water temperature, fuel level
Warning lights: oil pressure,. alt-
. ernator, high beam, directionals,
. handbrake, emergency flasher

. . . . . . MAINTENANCE
Service intervals, mi:
. Oil change...................3000
. Filter change................6000
. Chassis lube...............12,000
. Minor tuneup.................6000
. Major tuneup...............12,000
Warranty, mo/mi...........12/12,000

. . . . . . . GENERAL
Curb weight, lb................1645
Test weight....................2045
Weight distribution (with
. driver), front/rear, % .....53/47
Wheelbase, in .................90.6
Track, front/rear.........48.8/49.0
Overall length................152.0
. Width........................59.6
. Height.......................53.1
Ground clearance................6.7
Overhang, front/rear......24.5/36.9
Usable trunk space, cu ft...9.2+7.3
Fuel tank capacity, U.S. gal...10.0

. . . . . CALCULATED DATA
Lb/bhp (test weight)...........29.5
Mph/1000 rpm (4th gear)........16.4
Engine revs/mi (60 mph)........3650
Engine speed @ 70 mph..........4000
Piston travel, ft/mi...........1680
Cu ft/ton mi...................73.8
R&T wear index...................61
R&T steering index.............0.92
Brake swept area sq in/ton......203
___________________________________

Brochure Version

Dealer handout reprint magazine article.

<-- back to USA brochures

DATSUN 1200 COUPE
R & T ROAD & TRACK ROAD TEST
Reprinted from Road & Track Magazine
November, 1970 Issue

27596.jpgAlbum click to view 27597.jpgAlbum click to view 27599.jpgAlbum click to view 27598.jpgAlbum click to view

dealer mark:
ELDON VORIES MOTORS
207 South Ninth — JA 9-4450
Walla Walla, Washington