1974 DATSUN 120Y COUPE

After a happy honeymoon, Datsun owner Brett is still taken with his 120Y. But he wants a second carb under the hood.

The main reasons you bought this car? 
I simply wanted something old-school and original that was very tidy. I tend to go through cars regularly, usually keeping them for 12 to 18 months. 

When did you buy it? 
Early 2018. 

How do you rate the overall condition, out of 10? 
It’s right up there in my eyes, so I’d give it 8.5 or even 9. 

The design feature you like most? 
The shape and rear treatment. And also the Japanese-style wing mirrors. 

Anything unusual about your car’s history? 
Nothing that I’m aware of. 

How often do you use it? / Approx annual mileage? 
Once or twice a week, sometimes to work on a Friday if the weather’s good. That adds up to 2-3000km per year. I don’t drive it in the rain because I can’t be bothered cleaning it all the time. 

Your longest trip in this car to date? 
Only a 45-minute motorway drive across Auckland. 

Have you made any improvements to it? 
Not yet. The plan is to fit twin carbs for more horsepower, tidy up the engine and paint it to get it where I want it. 

Who carries out the majority of servicing work? 
I do all the work on my cars.

Does this model have an Achilles heel?
Rust. It’s a typical Datsun. By contrast, the engines are bullet-proof. 

Has the car exceeded your expectations in any ways? 
Yes, I really like it. I didn’t go out looking for this particular car but, pretty much as soon as I saw it, I realised it was exactly what I was looking for. 

Do you have long-term intentions with your car? 
With this one, yes. I have no intentions of moving it on but it will all come down to the bodywork because Datsuns hide a lot of evil. As soon as it starts showing any, it will probably be gone. 

Have you owned other special-interest cars? 
Mazda RX-3 Coupe, NA-series MX-5 and a Lancer Evo IV. I currently have a 1976 MK2 Escort 2000 project car. 

Anything else on your radar at the moment?
I’ve always wanted some bigger-dollar cars, and regret not buying a Sierra Cosworth a few years back. But that’s a car that will find its way into the garage one day. 

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1974 DATSUN 120Y COUPE

YEARS PRODUCED 1974-78

FIRST REGISTERED New Zealand

ENGINE 1178cc in-line four (upgraded to 1500cc)

POWER 51kW (68bhp) standard

TORQUE 95Nm @ 4000rpm

TRANSMISSION 5-spd manual

DRIVETRAIN rear-wheel drive

WEIGHT 810kg

LENGTH 3.95m

WHEELS 14-inch alloy

COLOUR Tomato red

UPHOLSTERY Black vinyl

OWNER Brett, Auckland

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