Datsun Bluebird 8101976 - 1979
Model: Bluebird (1957 - 1993)
Wikipedia (Bluebird): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nissan_Bluebird
The 810 was introduced in July 1976. Engine options were carried over but a 1.4 L was reintroduced in August 1978. Styling was an evolution of the 610's, with slightly squared off features but retaining a slight "coke bottle" shape. No two-door sedan was available, but the four-door sedan, two-door hardtop coupé (SSS Coupe) and five-door station wagon were offered.
The Bluebird 810 was sold in export markets as the Datsun 160B, Datsun 180B, Datsun 200B and Datsun 810.Australian magazine Wheels called the 200B 'a 180B with 20 more mistakes.' In Japan the range gradually received upgraded motors which could pass the 1978 emissions standards; these models carry 811 series chassis numbers, with Japanese market vehicles were installed with a NAPS badge on the rear trunklid that identified emission control technology having been installed. This process began in October 1977 and continued until August 1978. This meant replacing the earlier L-series engines with the new crossflow Z engines, based on the L.
At this time, with several UK auto-producers losing market share, Datsun had grabbed the headlines as the UK's leading car importer. The magazine Autocar road tested a 180B Bluebird and recorded a top speed of 101 mph (162 km/h) along with a 0-60 mph (0 – 96 km/h) time of 13.6 seconds. The Datsun's overall fuel consumption for the test was 27.7 mpg (10.2 l/100 km). For all three of these performance measurements, it was marginally better than the Ford Cortina 1600 GL which continued to dominate this sector in the UK, but both cars were beaten for speed and acceleration (though not for fuel economy) by the relatively crude Morris Marina 1.8HL. It was probably more significant that the Bluebird had a manufacturer's recommended retail price, including sales taxes, of £2950 as against £3263 for the Ford and £3315 for the Morris. The testers found the car matched the competition in most respects, though the brakes were criticised for being "not up to current standards".
In Japan there continued to be a six-cylinder version of the Bluebird available. As before, this received a longer wheelbase and nose, while retaining the rear end of the regular Bluebird range. Sold as the Datsun 810 in North America, this was the direct ancestor of the long running Nissan Maxima range. In August 1978 the Bluebird G4 was introduced (PD811), a 1.8 litre four-cylinder model fitted with the long-nose bodywork.