Original Arizona Truck: 1974 Datsun 620 Pickup

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Here’s one for you vintage Japanese vehicle fans: a 1974 Datsun 620 Pickup in unbelievable condition. It’s in Tucson, Arizona, where I should be, and it’s on eBay with a current bid price of $7,100. There are three days left on this one, I wouldn’t be surprised to see $8,000-$9,000 for this time capsule. This truck has 44,145 original miles; amazing.

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This truck spent its whole life outside of Yuma, Arizona before the current owner bought it two years ago from the second owners who were “Canadian snow birds” and would only use it for three months a year. The right front fender was in rough shape and the whole truck hadn’t been polished up in years, it had a “white chalky substance” on it and the brakes weren’t working. The current owner replaced the master cylinder and the brakes were back to working like new again.

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The seller purchased a parts truck with a nice OEM fender and had the crunched RF fender replaced and painted, but other than that, and the inside of the tailgate, the rest of the paint is original. He just hand-buffed it and it looks fantastic. You can just barely see the corner of the repainted inside of the tailgate on the left side of this photo.

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I’m sure that this velvety seat fabric feels better in Arizona, or probably anywhere, than the original vinyl would have. This interior may be even more amazing than the exterior is. The floors look brand new, as does the headliner, the space behind the seat, and the dash. How it lasted so long in the Arizona heat without cracking or warping is behind me. I’m talking about the truck now, not Arizona residents.. (HA, just kidding, I’d move to Arizona in a heartbeat). This truck has a 4-speed manual transmission, a 5-speed wasn’t available until 1977.

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Even the engine compartment looks great on this truck. Although, as you can see, the photos were taken almost a year ago. This is Datsun’s L18, a 1.8L (1,770 cc) four-cylinder with about 105 hp. That’s not a ton of power but for a 2,300 pound vehicle it’s adequate, you’re probably not going to be pulling a 1,500 pound trailer or hauling a ton of firewood around with this one. I love the idea that there are still mostly-original vintage Japanese vehicles like this one out there. As some of you may know, or may even comment, these weren’t made to be collectible, they were utilitarian vehicles to be used and sometimes abused. Are any of you also happy to see survivor trucks like this one still out there?

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Comments

  1. Blindmarc

    The first job (1973) I had was for a pizza restaurant and the owner had a butterscotch one. They put wide tires on the back because they would transport upto 15 50# bags of flour in the bed. They had it until 1982 with only normal maintenance costs.

  2. boxdin

    I had a 74 620 that I converted to 4wd. Underpowered but hey with that engine the sky is the limit with power.

  3. angliagt

    Not much leg room in these.I really like them,
    but don’t want one as a dd.And disc brakes didn’t
    come out until 1978.

  4. Francisco

    This leaves me to wonder why the Japanese (or Korean) manufacturers don’t apply this small truck concept in modern vehicles. Simple, stripped down, reliable, and affordable. I’m sure there’s a market. The Honda Element came close, but that wasn’t a truck.

    • Gianni

      Chicken tax on foreign built light trucks is probably one reason.

      That and crossovers is where the money is.

  5. Scotty G Staff

    Sold, at $7,950! Nice.

  6. Andrew

    I wish they still made small trucks this size for Americans and Canadians. Not everyone needs a large truck to haul small stuff around. Easy to park in cities too.
    Well, I just bought my little 1980 Volkswagen Rabbit last week. It’s going to get restored to like new again, in the original ketchup red paint.

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