1980 Datsun 280ZX Coupe L2.8 N/A from North America


Classic Z


Paid $200.00 for the car.

Replaced the floor boards, rockers, rear 1/4's, right front fender, both doors.

Invested approx $1000 total in redoing the body.

Changed spark plugs, hoses, belts, plug wires, oil and air filter, all the normal wear items.

Clutch is going now after 95000 miles.

General Comments:

Dream to drive, very fun car.

Very mechanically sound car.

Second Z I have owned, first was a 77, which I paid $225.00 for and then blew the engine and sold it for $500.00

Actually a rather cheap toy, not the quickest car, but fun and a real "classic"

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th July, 2003

1980 Datsun 280ZX 2.8L from North America


Fast, in-your-face car, fun to drive and looks like a sports car should


It has a new radiator and the pressure blew the heater core. But, I live in Yuma, Arizona, so don't need a heater very often.

General Comments:

I had forgotten that I had lusted for a 280ZX when they were new. Now at 63 years old, I get one. I bought mine from my son who put on 12,000 miles in a little over a year. It is everything the Cadillac wasn't; rough, raw, noisy, rattles- in-short just a lot of fun to drive. I drove it 675 miles home with no problems. Sunday holiday traffic down CA I-5, speeds from stop and go to 90 plus. I use it daily for work and would like to try a longer trip with my wife.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th December, 2002

19th Jan 2003, 00:21

Hi Dad! Glad you like the car. (Yeah, I'm the son who sold him the Z)

One very important fact that my dad failed to mention was that this car has 366,000 miles on it. Original engine. No smoke, just runs like a bat out of.. well, let's just say it runs. I ran it commuting to my job in San Jose on the back roads with twisties, and it loved every minute of those roads.

Handling: An A+ in a traditional sense. Power slides? No Problem! Gear down coming in to the corner, floor it through the corner as it winds out from about 3500 -5500, and it just feels better and better. Back end hanging out, tires squalling, just be ready to counter-steer when the back end grips again!

These L motors are solid. Bulletproof. Don't be afraid of miles on these cars if they are not rusted out.

15th Jan 2004, 23:17

Just an update, Jan. 16, 2004. The car now has 386,000 miles and goes 1,000 miles or more on a quart of oil. Still a thrill to drive and cheap to own. A two year registration in Arizona was about $35.00, gas mileage is about 22 MPG.

Lots of legroom and the pedals fit just right. I had starting problems and the parts counter said the battery was shot. Dropped in a new one and still would not turn over. It seems the key switch has worn and the key has to be cocked up a little and now it starts every time. The fan belt broke last summer going across the desert to El Centro, CA. Caught a ride to Holtville and got a mechanic take me back and install it for $25.

Get a Z and have fun.


21st Apr 2007, 11:18

I just purchased a 1980 280 ZX; a magnificent project just waiting for some tender loving care: Driving her reminds me that I cling to life like a ring on a skeleton's finger...

1980 Datsun 280ZX 10th anniversary 2.4 L28 Nissan In-line 6 cylinder from North America


Best car ever made!


Nothing so far since it is not on the road yet. I just bought it two weeks ago from a friend who found it 8 months ago sitting in the back of a car dealership where it had been sitting for 9 years.

General Comments:

Right now the car is being restored, but as soon as it is finished it will be a dominating force.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd October, 2002

24th Jul 2007, 22:49

I own a 10th anniversary 280 ZX. It was bought for me by my mother. I enjoyed the car very much.

I did have the Exhaust modified for more Hp. At one point I had 3/4 race cams installed with headers. It wouldn't pass smog, resulting in the removal of the race cam & headers.

It has sat in my garage since 1996, no longer driven. Just a few months ago I tried to start it. Obviously after sitting so long without being run, that it won't run now.

It's been my most favorite car I have ever had. Its very fast and fun. No body makes T-tops any more? It sits at my sisters house in Riverside, CA. waiting to be fixed. Hopefully my sister will get it running again. We are moving to Colorado and I didn't want to take it with me in that climate.

I remember when we first bought the Z, there were numerous problems with it. The clutch went out in 5,000 miles. synchros for shifting gears had to be replaced 3 times. The car has 98,000 miles on it.

OH! The A/C unit worked fine for a couple of years then it went wacky. I remember spending $500. to fix it and it worked fine for another 3 months. The A/C was really the "sore" spot of the car. So as it sits now, the A/C does not work. I installed Louvers on the rear window & rear side windows. I also installed an air foil spoiler on the hatch back door.

Still has the stock 14" rims that are gold/aluminum. It needs tires badly. BFG's have worked the best in the past. 235/60/14. They only made 3000 of the Black & Gold Z's.

Mine has the plaque inside with the number out of 3000 it was given. The worst thing to do?? is to stop driving the Z car and let it sit in a garage for 10 years. Don't do it. Keep your car running. I have no idea what it will take to get her running again. I'm sure it will cost plenty though. $$$.

That's all I have for you about my car. Anybody want to ask me any further questions about my car? send your E-Mail here:


1980 Datsun 280ZX LX 2.8L I6 from North America


A real racer, but it'll show on your insurance


The car tends to stall at low temperature. Besides that it runs like a rocket (a fast one).

There is some rust on rocker panels, but they are repairable.

General Comments:

This car is fast. It has an advertised 135 horse power, but it feels so much faster.

It handles like a champ. Back roads and turns are no problem in this (of course, I did have a Buick before this).

High insurance!!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th June, 2001

30th Mar 2003, 19:43

High Insurance, I do not know what you are talking about. I am only 21 years old and I pay 280 dollars a year for my 1980 280zx, I pay 550 for 6 months on an 1990 Oldsmobile eighty-eight. Check insurance rates, some insurance companies consider the 2.8 liter engine as a small engine so my rates are low. The Oldsmobile has a 3.8 and this boosts my rates sky high.