Original Paint and More! 1971 Datsun 240Z

Wearing imperfect yet shiny original paint, this 1971 Datsun 240Z in Chino Hills, California looks great! It clearly enjoyed care in other areas as well, retaining its original interior as well. It comes to the market here on Craigslist where $22,500 will put this well-preserved slice of sports car heaven in your driveway. The 240 made its splash in the market a year earlier, 1970, and the gorgeous two-seater struck gold just as the classic muscle car era peaked, positioning it perfectly as American V8s began losing power year by year and miles per gallon took a more dominant role in marketing. Here’s a car you could really enjoy without filling a 20+ gallon tank over and over. Thanks to reader Rex M. for spotting this refrigerator white survivor.

The magical 2.4L inline six cylinder SOHC powerplant gives the 240Z its name… and its soul. While most Japanese cars, even the sporty ones, made do with a “four-banger,” the 240’s 150 HP six elevated the Z to near-Corvette performance in a smaller, nimbler package. The fastest car I’ve ever driven is a ’72 240Z with a later 2.8L mill making about 320 HP, and the last thought on my mind was wishing it had two more cylinders.

The absence of rear seats leaves a sizable cargo area out back. Louvers shade your belongings while allowing rearward visibility. Personally I’d have dropped $125 to have a muffler shop replace the coat-hanger suspending that muffler, but it’s nothing if not authentic ’70s. A fully-independent front and rear suspension, rack and pinion steering, and big brakes complete the package.

The simple mission-oriented dash, low center of gravity, and supportive bucket seats leave no doubt that the 240Z will go fast whenever you’re in the mood. The 7000 RPM redline would grenade most performance cars of the day. That wild ’72 240Z I drove still had the stock tach, but the owner told me “Just shift when the needle disappears.”

Iconic in its own right, the Z’s design recalls great motoring cars like the Jaguar E-Type and  1965 Ferrari 275 GTB 6. From this vantage I might prefer the Datsun! First-generation Z cars have sold for much more money than the asking price on this one. Despite being roughly a factor of ten times the car’s original price, the value of never-restored original Z has nowhere to go but up. Plus, with a car in this condition, your best investment is to simply replace worn parts and keep on driving! Would you pay more than $25,000 for this highly original mini-GT?


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  1. RoughDiamond RoughDiamond Member

    Posting already deleted.

    Like 3
    • Todd Fitch Staff

      Nuts! Thanks, RoughDiamond, it was active maybe 15 min ago. Hopefully it went to a good home.

      Like 4
  2. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    You snooze you loose…..these early ones have been sought after for years and this one was priced to sale !

    Like 3
  3. Steve R

    Another example of a car, priced according to its market, selling quickly.

    This one looked great in the pictures, not perfect, but if it truly is unrestored it’s about as good as it gets.

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a 240Z without a set of slot mags. They look great and are representative of that era.

    Steve R

    Like 4
    • Bamapoppy

      Steve R, I had a ‘71 with the steel wheels and hubcaps. It was a delight to drive and I wish I had it back when I see ads like this.

      Like 1
  4. bobhess bobhess Member

    Ordered a ’72 that wasn’t due in from japan for 30 days. During that time I ordered a set of the slotted mags to have ready for it’s arrival. Never happened. Big dock strike in San Francisco and my car was sitting on a boat. Had to get to my next job so bought a Chevy Blazer to haul my stuff and our ’53 MG TD across country. Sold the mags to a new Z owner in Jacksonville Florida who was thrilled to have them.

  5. JCA

    Nice car and price

    Like 1
  6. chrlsful

    one of the few, the far between (price/condition).
    Like the 2000 and this, may B the 510 waggy/sedan.
    What to purchase, research, wrench on, await prts, DD, restore, sell or keep~

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