Early Z Car: 1970 Datsun 240Z Barn Find

The world has gone crazy for Series 1 Datsun 240Zs for the last several years, and it’s easy to understand why: like so many other early production models, these were the purest expression of the company’s legendary sports car line, and it’s still an affordable alternative compared to a 911 or BMW E9 from the same era. This 240Z is a late 1970 production model and the seller notes he titled in his name six years ago and then parked it in his barn. Find it here on eBay with bids to $5K and no reserve.

The air vents beneath the back glass on the rear hatch is the tell-tale sign of this being a desirable Series 1 car, and possibly a good indication it hasn’t been previously wrecked in the rear like so many of these cars have. It’s not uncommon to find a Series 1 that’s missing its original rear deck lid, adding confusion as to a car’s authenticity. The seller notes that prior to acquiring the Z, it sat outside for a number of years under an awning while in the care of its previous owner.

It’s too bad, then, that this 240Z continues to struggle to find a forever home, but at least it’s indoors. I’ve noticed this for some time now that many 240Zs and the 260Z that came after it have been left to languish and rot, almost as if the owners knew they’d be special enough someday to warrant holding onto – but not worthy at the time of preserving it indoors. This 240Z is missing its original engine and transmission, but at least the interior seems fairly complete and not terribly rotten inside.

The seller notes the original engine was “not good” but doesn’t elaborate as to whether it’s sitting on blocks somewhere in the back of the barn. Instead, he offers that an engine from a later 280Z will be included, but that it will require assembly. The typically troublesome floors, inner fenders, and frame rails are all said to be in good shape, and the seller discloses just one spot of potential concern for rust in the left rear quarter panel. A no reserve auction for a Series 1 car doesn’t happen that often; is this one worthy of a gamble?


  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    I’d buy it just to see one that didn’t have the aformentioned areas rusted out. A desmogged 280 built properly isn’t the worst thing to happen to an early Z. Could be a rare find and a good car to rebuild.

    Like 5
    • piston poney

      we have a 280xz out in the pole barn. but it´s an automatic. my dad said if some on walked up with $1,000 for it he would take it. (personaly i love the car and i hope he never sells it lol)

      Like 4
      • piston poney

        someone not some on

        Like 3
      • Jerry D Williams

        If I knew where lived I might give it a shot,

        Like 1
  2. JMB#7

    At $5k this would be a steal. It is now up over $9k. I would have no problem with putting in the later 2.8 engine or going back to a “original” 2.4 engine. It says it “was a 4-speed”, but he does not have the transmission. The lack of rust justifies the price. I would like see what the buy finally does with this car. I think it would be a great starting point for a nice 240Z rebuild.

    Like 5
  3. mainlymuscle

    That’s unusually good metal for one of these.No way it goes for less than 20k,probably 25,just for the amount you would save in body work .

    Like 2
  4. chris george lawrence

    Amazed at how many idiots on this site only cater to American cars. 240z and 280z are totally different.

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