Junkyard Find: 1974 Datsun B210

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1974 datsun b210

Yesterday, we saw an once-ubiquitous 80s Japanese econobox that has nearly disappeared from the face of the earth; at the same Denver junkyard, I found a once-ubiquitous 70s Japanese econobox that also hasn’t been seen on the street for many years. The little fastback B210 was once everywhere.

75 horsepower under the hood, which meant that B210 drivers had to be patient on freeway onramps; even scaling in at under a ton, the B210 was pretty sluggish. Pintos owned the B210 at stoplight races.

The four-speed B210 was poky enough, but just imagine the agony of trying to accelerate with half the power being soaked up by an automatic transmission. Groan.

Still, these things were reasonably reliable (by the very lax standards of the era), sipped gas through a cocktail straw, and looked pretty good. Hey, what do you suppose an SR20DET-swapped B210 would be like?

Nissan was pretty good about making taillights and trim pieces look Mars Base-style futuristic back in those days; I think the current Sentra could use this treatment.

Sorry about the hazy photos— I was at the junkyard on an emergency mission to replace some theft-attempt-damaged parts on my Civic and had only my phone’s camera on me at the time. Check in later for the tale of How I Thwarted Another Civic Thief.

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  • Buckshot Buckshot on Aug 10, 2011

    I used to own one of those, back in 1985. This car nearly killed me. When driving at night at ca 60mph, i got a short circuit. Everyhting went pitch black. I just managed to stay on the road :O

  • Hifi Hifi on Aug 10, 2011

    When I was seven, a neighbor moved onto the block with a green B210. Even at that age, the ugliness of this car made no sense to me. It would sprout random rust spots that the owners would cover with spray paint they bought at pep boys. The B210 sure didn't help build Nissan's reputation for quality. Such a POS best forgotten.

  • Nrd515 Usually for me it's been Arby's for pretty much forever, except when the one near my house dosed me with food poisoning twice in about a year. Both times were horrible, but the second time was just so terrible it's up near the top of my medical horror stories, and I have a few of those. Obviously, I never went to that one again. I'm still pissed at Arby's for dropping Potato Cakes, and Culver's is truly better anyway. It will be Arby's fish for my "cheat day", when I eat what I want. No tartar sauce and no lettuce on mine, please. And if I get a fish and a French Dip & Swiss? Keep the Swiss, and the dip, too salty. Just the meat and the bread for me, thanks. The odds are about 25% that they will screw one or both of them up and I will have to drive through again to get replacement sandwiches. Culver's seems to get my order right many times in a row, but if I hurry and don't check my order, that's when it's screwed up and garbage to me. My best friend lives on Starbucks coffee. I don't understand coffee's appeal at all. Both my sister and I hate anything it's in. It's like green peppers, they ruin everything they touch. About the only things I hate more than coffee are most condiments, ranked from most hated to..who cares..[list=1][*]Tartar sauce. Just thinking about it makes me smell it in my head. A nod to Ranch here too. Disgusting. [/*][*]Mayo. JEEEEZUS! WTF?[/*][*]Ketchup. Sweet puke tasting sludge. On my fries? Salt. [/*][*]Mustard. Yikes. Brown, yellow, whatever, it's just awful.[/*][*]Pickles. Just ruin it from the pickle juice. No. [/*][*]Horsey, Secret, whatever sauce. Gross. [/*][*]American Cheese. American Sleeze. Any cheese, I don't want it.[/*][*]Shredded lettuce. I don't hate it, but it's warm and what's the point?[/*][*]Raw onion. Totally OK, but not something I really want. Grilled onions is a whole nother thing, I WANT those on a burger.[/*][*]Any of that "juice" that Subway and other sandwich places want to put on. NO, HELL NO! Actually, move this up to #5. [/*][/list=1]
  • SPPPP It seems like a really nice car that's just still trying to find its customer.
  • MRF 95 T-Bird I owned an 87 Thunderbird aka the second generation aero bird. It was a fine driving comfortable and very reliable car. Quite underrated compared to the GM G-body mid sized coupes since unlike them they had rack and pinion steering and struts on all four wheels plus fuel injection which GM was a bit late to the game on their mid and full sized cars. When I sold it I considered a Mark VII LSC which like many had its trouble prone air suspension deleted and replaced with coils and struts. Instead I went for a MN-12 Thunderbird.
  • SCE to AUX Somebody got the bill of material mixed up and never caught it.Maybe the stud was for a different version (like the 4xe) which might use a different fuel tank.
  • Inside Looking Out Scandinavian design costs only $600? I mean the furniture.