1979 Datsun 810 2.4 Inline Six

Summary:

Best first car for $200 ever

Faults:

Has had rust problems since I bought it in 2003. In Washington state the winters are very snowy and they put salt on the road as a De-Icer, this has not helped me make much progress fixing the rust.

The car's engine has never given me any major problems.

- An old hose (original from the factory in '79) blew in September of 2004.

- I replaced the air conditioning and alternator belts in the summer of 2004.

- I just took it in for it's first oil change a couple weeks ago. (Every 3,000 miles)

- It has been showing its age on the interior. The seats have been faded by the sun. Some of the plastic parts have been cracking.

- I do not know the reason, but the heater and aftermarket CD player I put in stopped working one day. I tried replacing the fuses, but it must be something in the electrical system.

General Comments:

The reason I am not sure about the car's mileage is because it only shows up to 47,000. Because of the car's age I am sure it must be over 200,000 though.

This car is very quick to accelerate and I have never had passing problems. I have never pushed the car faster than 85 mph, but it could go much faster.

It is a rear wheel drive car so this winter I slid around a bit even with studs on. (not that I did not want to slide around...)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th January, 2005

19th Nov 2005, 02:06

I got my '79 810 as a gift from my dad. My grandpa originally bought it in Mexico from some old lady that rarely drove it. The Datsun has basically been in the family since it was new. This car is extremely reliable. My dad took me and my whole family of 5 back in '99 all the way to a place in Tijuana called San Felipe. It is a 350 mile drive from Los Angeles, California. It made all the way there and back with all of our sleeping bags, blankets, and the rest of our supplies. We have also taken it to Las Vegas a couple of times too. It has never broken down on us or given us any problems.

24th Jun 2006, 16:49

I got my Datsun 810 from my stepfather in 1986 when it had 26,000 miles on it. He bought it new in 1978. It now has about 87,000 miles on it (not sure of exact mileage because I had speedometer/odometer disconnected at 83,000 miles because the cable was making a lot of noise and speedometer needle moved erratically). The car is incredible. Acceleration great. Handles beautifully. And so pretty to look at! Everyone in New York would comment on the car every time I drove it. It's now in Florida and doesn't seem to attract the same attention. I had it re-painted beautifully (cost $4500) in the original metallic gold. Am thinking of selling it because I'm moving back to New York City where I don't need a car, but don't know what it's worth.

17th Jan 2007, 19:09

I enjoy my 1979 Datsun 810 2 door hardtop. I drive it daily. It has 110000 actual miles on it, 30000 of which I put on it since I purchased it from the original owner in 2003. It's a clean car complete with factory alloy wheels, five speed trans, a/c, etc. I could use some new plastic trim type pieces in the interior, but those parts are virtually impossible to find. 24 mpg, never gives me any trouble except for a cracked windshield which I'm in the process of replacing. I paid $500 for it and have put approximately $1000 more in it since. I intend to drive it until it won't run anymore.

1978 Datsun 810 L2.8

Summary:

Perfect 10

Faults:

I had to put a new clutch plate in at 150,000 miles.

The ignition switch went bad at 97,000 miles.

Rebuilt the engine and cleaned the engine compartment up at 178,000 miles.

General Comments:

The best car I have ever owned, and I have had about twenty five different cars.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th November, 2004

31st Mar 2007, 15:40

I too owned a 810. My car was the 1983 810 Maxima. I have never owned a car as well built before or after this. If nissan was still building the in-line 6's like used in this car I would never own another car.

I bought my car from my grand-mother in 1993 with 120k miles on it. I sold it for $160.00 to a guy wanting the engine in 2002 with 436k miles on it and the engine was still strong. I would own it to this day, but the suspension and electrical components of the car were worn out and I considered it to hazardous to drive. I had to replace it with another vehicle leaving no money for repairs.

May she rust in peace, I miss her like a friend.

25th Mar 2008, 15:20

I owned a 1979 Datsun 810 Coupe from 1990-1999. My parents bought it new in 1979. What a great little car. If it weren't for rust, I'd probably still be driving it. I'd love to buy a rebuilt one now that I'm older and have more funds.

Too bad that model is incredibly rare. They didn't make very many coupes in '79. Oh well, some things are left to exist only in our memories.

29th May 2009, 04:14

I have a '78 810 Wagon as a daily driver. I've had it now 15 years. It serves me well.

17th Jan 2011, 01:04

I like the Datsun 810. I used to have one that I wrecked unfortunately. Otherwise I would still have it.

For those looking for one today (I am doing so), try getting the 810 with the round headlamps. Unfortunately Datsun used square headlamps and ugly grille later on in US 810 cars, due to pressure from the US market.

The round lamped 810 is beautiful, the squared lamped looks like a Chrysler, ugly! LOL, but the round set up could be swapped in.

Aside from that square lamp defect on later models, the rest of the car is great. The Datsun 810 is a great car, makes a nice sports car with its 6 cylinder engine.

Cheers.