The Datsun originated in Japan almost a century ago in 1914, but in 1981 the Datsun brand was integrated with Nissan. It has been announced as part of Nissan's expansion plans to awaken the spirit of the Datsun brand after 32 years of silence. We can expect to see the Datsun back on our roads by the end of 2014.

The Datsun Bluebird

Datsun enjoyed a proud heritage in South Africa, it was symbol of Japanese anti-establishment in terms of design. During the late 50’s there was the introduction of the Bluebird, in the late 60’s, the SSS and the 70’s, the 120Y, all of which were household names. During its rein in South Africa, the Datsun brand reached its peak as the number one brand between 1976 and 1978. Our roads were filled with yellow, orange and brown coloured, space-aged 70’s funk Datsun 120Y’s in either saloon or coupe form- all with brown or tan vinyl interiors.

         The Datsun 1600 SSS

The Datsun 120Y Coupe'

     The Datsun 120Y Sedan 

I suspect the 2014 vehicle will be a compact saloon/hatch and less of a “lighting-fast” vehicle as the name translates in Japanese and more “DAT”: Durable, attractive and trustworthy.


I chatted to the Media Relations Manager, Veralda Schmidt and posed the question of positioning. Veralda highlighted the fact that the Infiniti brand sits at the top of the Nissan food chain, being their prestige brand, Nissan sitting under that and the Datsun brand that will be re-established with a strong independent brand identity, alongside its siblings, aiming at value.


The brand is also to be introduced in India, Indonesia and Russia in 2014.





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