By on June 11, 2014


Nissan’s budget brand Datsun is ready to go to South Africa, the fourth market that the resurrected nameplate will either see again or for the first time.

Just-Auto reports the first car to arrive in showrooms will be the Go hatchback, which will go for under R 100,000 ($9,340 USD). The cars will come over from the brand’s factory in Chennai, India at first — though parent company Renault-Nissan has a plant in Rosslyn, South Africa — and will be sold in 30 dealerships by the end of the year.

The last time Datsun sold a vehicle was during the 1980s transition into the Nissan brand, and was the No. 1-selling brand in the country from 1976 through 1978. The revived brand’s current goal is to attract first-time car buyers in developing markets around the globe, including Russia, India and Latin America.

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3 Comments on “Datsun Is Go In South Africa...”

  • avatar

    I have a South Africa question.

    In my mind it’s always one of the most developed and advanced African nations, with commerce and a decent sized middle class. But then I hear stories about old models being continued there for 25 years after their expiration in other countries, and new brands like Datsun coming in with extra low-cost models.

    So is that because the majority of the country is not very developed and filled with the non-affluent? Do the people with money still purchase 1st world cars, and leave the Datsuns and 1970s Corollas to the poor? Or, are the roads generally bad so you need something rough and tumble.

    • 0 avatar

      There is a wide range of income groups and a fairly decent middle class. There is a great deal of poverty to but those people are typically not in the new car marked unless crime is involved.
      One of the legacies of apartheid and the economic sanctions is that car prices, to this day, are very, very high. Heavy import taxes protecting local manufacturing where vastly reduced after 1995 and the local manufacturers kept old generation models going for years to survive and to accommodate customers unable to afford super high cost “new” vehicles and imports. So, VW will happily sell you a brand new top of the line Toureg (diesle or gas V8) or a 2 or 3 generation old Polo 1.0l bare bones…
      The roads are generally in very good shape (better than here in the US!!!) with good, well thought out signage and road marking systems. In Some rural or backwater areas roads can get pretty bad though. Highway speeds are very high, 80MPH or so.

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