Down On the Wisconsin Street: Datsun Sports 2000

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
down on the wisconsin street datsun sports 2000

You’ve got to love a car named the Sports, if only because it reminds us of the pre-focus-group era. I’m on vacation in Door County, Wisconsin at the moment, which means I’m surrounded by endless Packers paraphernalia, startling quantities of Buicks driven by folks 50 years younger than the normal Buick demographic, cheese curds, and this beautiful street-parked vintage Datsun.

I’ve spotted a few interesting cars in my travels around the peninsula, mostly old Detroit stuff but also a well-preserved Volvo 164 and an MGA. I didn’t stop to photograph those cars, but the sight of the Datsun Sports parked in downtown Sturgeon Bay made me yell “STOP THE CAR!” at my wife.

I’m not enough of a vintage Nissan expert to state an exact year for this car, but I know the side marker lights mean it’s a 1968-70 model.

The wheels look good, the color looks good, and everything on the car looks very solid. These cars are slightly more reliable than their MG/Triumph/Sunbeam/Fiat/Alfa competition of the era, but not enough to have made them the Miata of their time.

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2 of 19 comments
  • WRohrl WRohrl on Aug 19, 2011

    Murilee, this is starting to border on the freakish - First you live in the Bay Area, same as me. Then last year you move to Denver and we move to Northern Colorado. Now you are on vacation in WI and I am also here (for the ALMS race at Road America tomorrow). Very strange...

  • Obbop Obbop on Aug 20, 2011

    Engine displacement as part of a vehicles name/nomenclature. Makes sense but to be different MY vehicle manufacturing firm would use the MSRP as part of the name. One benefit would be to separate the "better" higher-priced model from the lower-priced basic version bought by those scum commoners from the bottom parts of the socioeconomic pile from the better folks higher up. Yep.