Dusty Louvers: 20+ Years Stored Datsun 280Z

If you’re thinking this 1978 Datsun 280Z has about 20 years’ worth of dust, you’d be correct. The listing on craigslist is short and sweet, simply noting that it’s been parked for two decades and doesn’t run (surprise, surprise). The market for the vintage Z-car is heating up, but it’s not yet hot enough to make an automatic 280Z like this one here on craigslist command a big price. 

But this one does at least have some interesting aero parts on it, as that spoiler appears to be molded in – not just slapped on with some double-sided tape. Enthusiasts tend to swoon over the rear louvers, as that adornment on the rear hatch glass is painfully period-correct. The good news here is that the bodywork looks quite sound, even if the U.S. impact bumpers should be stripped off immediately.

The interior looks to be excellent as well, so there’s strong potential for this car to be a good buy as a parts vehicle. The later you go in the Z-car lineup, the more the desirability tends to fall – so finding someone restoring a 280Z may be a hard buyer to find, especially if the price is astronomical. There’s no price listed, so it’s a guess at this point as to what it will sell for. By the way, thanks to Barn Finds reader j liu for the find.

If you’re looking for an earlier car with a manual transmission, this 260Z is part of the large Georgia collection we’ve listed here as a Barn Finds Exclusive. You can find the details on the 260Z and 240Z cars here. I recently discovered on my most recent trip to the Georgia collection that the 240Z comes with period sidedrafts, along with a clean title – so give me a yell if any of those cars interest you.

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  1. Chebby Member

    Dusty Louvers is my new porn star name.

    • Pat Lamb

      Here it is…..

  2. Bruce B

    Small world. I just pulled a 1978 280Z 5spd from 26 years storage. 91k miles. After typical long term storage hydraulic blues were corrected, it’s a sweet ride. Wish I had more storage available.

  3. Mr. TKD

    The bumpers and the automatic would be going straight in the trash.

    LOVE the louvers — why are they “painfully period-correct”?

  4. Ralph

    Did everyone put aftermarket wheels on these when they were new?

    • George Lugo

      Those Hurricane style wheels were incredibly popular in the ’70’s.


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