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Datsun 1600

Title: Datsun 1600 Update
submitted by: Richard from Gippsland, VIC

Hi, I sent an article on this model to you some years ago. I have now finished restoring my car, so I thought you may be interested in the update photo. Richard.

Hi Richard; Wow, quite a change, and we love the colour selection, and combined with the minilites it makes the Datsun appear far more agressive. We have always preferred (and advised people) to be subtle with changes, it seems you have hit the sweet spot - congratulations! Ed.



Datsun 1600


Datsun 1600


Datsun 1600


Datsun 1600


Datsun 1600


Datsun 1600

Title: Datsun 1600
submitted by: Richard from Gippsland, VIC

When I searched the gallery and could not find a reference to the classic Datsun 1600, I was shocked!

Datsun 1600's won the East Africa Safari Rally, one of the world's toughest motor sport events. In the United States the famous No. 46 “Brock Racing Enterprises” Datsun 1600 won the under 2.5 litre "Transam" Series in a cliffhanger final race beating the best of Europe, including both BMW and Alfa Romeo. It was after these races that the legend of the Datsun 1600 was born and thousands of car lovers today still look in reverence at these unimposing but potent Japanese "sports sedans".

In Australia, Datsun 1600s were very successfully rallied by almost everybody in the 1970's through to the late 1990's, over 20 years of dominance! Geoff Portman and Ross Runnells were the rally team that cemented the legend in Australia. Here seen in the 1978 Repco Alpine Rally in their famous IFK 250, powered by the also legendary Les Collins built, Datrally "grunter" engine. It took specialized 4wd turbocharged forest racers to put Datsun 1600's out of contention at the top the sport.

At club rally level you still see Datsun 1600's in the high placings. I rallied my first Datsun 1600 in 1976 and it ran reliably for 8 years from club level to Victorian Championship events. Then, my 6 year old son was a keen follower of the Datsun 1600's progress during the Alpine Rally's of the early '1980's - he now owns 3 of them. Both he and his wife have a 1600 for their road cars, and they own a "project car" - second generation devotees!

Datsun 1600's have become collector items as many were destroyed in competition or driven until they "dropped" - and this often took 30 years! Australian built cars have bodies more prone to rust. Japanese imports were better rust proofed. The earliest models 1967/8 were fully imported and are preferred, unless you find a later import, like mine. Younger Datsun 1600 enthusiasts are now fitting high performance Nissan turbo engines, as the basic bodies are strong and there is 30 years knowledge of readily available upgrades to handle the increased performance.

I rejoined the Datsun 1600 ownership in 1999, by purchasing a very rare 1971 Datsun 1600SSS. Built for the Japanese market, very few were sold in Australia from 1970 as they weren't fitted with the mandatory (in Australia) collapsible steering column. Only very few exist here. The Datsun 1600 "SSS" has a higher performance engine, different trim and better instrumentation.

Mine was imported from New Guinea by an expat. Australian and lived in inland NSW for the next 25 years, doing only 93000 miles in that time. I purchased the car in 1997 and kept it in original condition, whilst gradually collecting all the required "performance bits" to bolt on upgrade, running gear, suspension and brakes. The original parts are all restored and kept to maintain the originality.

Recently I dismantled the car and repainted the shell and all the "hang on" panels. Its a new body again! I am really looking forward to getting into my "new" Datsun 1600 SSS, with improved performance, handling and comforts (air, cruse, electronics). I plan to do a lot of driving, including regular competition - it wont be left in the shed. After the Datsun 1600 SSS moves out of the workshop, my son's "Project Datsun 1600" will get its body refurbishment prior to a turbo engine transplant - he's into modern technology.



Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Holden Sunbird

Title: Sunbirds Rock
1977 Sunbird LX
submitted by: Doug

Hey Sunbird Haters,

I thought I would show you mine so hopefully you can put it on your site and stop paying out on me for having a sh*t car... there are before and after photos and, as you will see, 'for a Sunbird' it is a very hot car... it looks good and goes good...

The first two photos are from when I first bought it about 3 years ago .. since then I have totally stripped it, respray, painted the entire engine bay, fitted extractors, 15x7 performance mags, new carpet, pioneer mp3, sub amp, splits, sunroof, 2'' exhaust , new grille, new chrome bumpers and alot of tidying up... you cannott honestly say that this is a sh*t sunbrid coz I have not had one bad comment about it.. everyone likes it including me and it does have some power after been ported and polished and extractors also a $800 double throat webber carby...it has some go...

All there is left to do is fit an alarm and lower it.... Post this on your site, and show that not all Sunbirds are pieces of sh*t (although a lot of them are - especially the uc models). I hope you agree from the photos attached that my Sunbird isn't in bad nick and you see now why I hate people paying out Sunbirds.... coz mine is sick ...again SUNBIRDS ROCK!!!!!

Doug









Title: Tims Benz
Mercedes 350SL R107 1971
submitted by: Tim from Pascoe Vale, VIC

Dear Unique Cars and Parts Readers,

Well, I guess I should own up and say this is not actually my car, rather my Dad's - but I am hopeful he will throw me the keys when I turn 18. The car was purchased from a friend, and was originally white having been imported from the UK in the late 70's. With only 70,000 miles on the clock, she was in pretty good shape mechanically, but the Australian sun and 25 years of indifference toward regular maintenance had taken its toll.

Further, the car had at some point been re-sprayed, and while the paint job looked great from a distance, closer inspection revealed small parts flaking off and overspray, particularly around the engine bay. After my dad made the decision to rebuild her, he set about obtaining the parts from Germany. It is surprising just how many parts for a 1971 Merc are still available ex Germany, and his belief that he may need to source parts from the USA proved ill-founded.

Indeed, he was able to obtain the most obscure parts for the car - actually I think he went a little overboard. For example, he purchased the little rubber gromets that make the fuel filler cap close quietly, even the tire inflation sticker for the inside of the fuel filler cap! When he had obtained all the parts required for the resto, he removed all chrome work and sent the car to the shop for a body off respray. Bumper bars were re-chromed, the engine was re-built including bead-blasting, the interior re-upholstered - even a new dashboard and instrument cluster assembly was installed.

The results speak form themselves. I think the car looks sensational, although I wish the Melbourne weather was a little better suited to convertible driving. On a few occasions my Dad has threatened to sell the Merc, but I have so far been able to convince him that the only reason we should ever get rid of it is to buy a Porsche. Dad usually mumbles in agreement, then walks off shaking his head.

I have really enjoyed looking at all the car information contained on this site, particularly the 380SL car brochure contained in the PDF section of the site. Thanks for providing such a great site, I hope this story is worthy of publication.

Tim Patterson
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