RV Conversion: 1979 Datsun 620

The Datsun 620 was a line of Nissan trucks built in Japan between 1972-79. Earlier models brought into the U.S. were sometimes known as 1600 (as a shout-out to the engine size). But a 1952 cc engine would be used later. This one from 1979 (or ’78) is thought to have been one of 60 converted to a mini recreational vehicle with a fiberglass body made by Chinook. Located in Vineland, New Jersey, this little RV runs but needs work and is available here on Barn Finds Classifieds. The asking price is $7,550.

Nissan (or Datsun in the U.S. for many years) has been in the truck business as far back as 1955. The 620 began as a compact regular cab pickup with an extended cab added later. The 1975-79 editions of the 620 would use the L20B 4-cylinder engine that produced 97 hp SAE net. 4 and 5-speed transmissions were common while an automatic was available, although a bit sluggish under load.

This 620 looks to have been sitting for a bit with Florida license plates, though it’s in New Jersey now. The seller bought it to do a complete renovation, but health issues will not permit that now. The body looks okay, except for perhaps a crumpled hood, though the faded red paint covers what was likely white from the factory. The seller says the chassis needs to be repaired, but we don’t know the extent of the work that is needed.

We’re told the engine runs great and has been cared for by a professional mechanic who installed a new Weber carburetor. But a clutch is now on the to-do list, along with tires. While the seats are good and the RV portion can sleep six, the interior and camper are going to need a makeover. It has a stove and other camping amenities to help enjoy the great outdoors. The fiberglass body is said to be tight with no leaks. At 78,000 miles, this looks to be a modest project that you could adjust to your needs.

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Comments

  1. Evan

    YoM questions still happen in the RV industry today. An RV manufacturer can buy a 2021 Ford E-450 right now, and it’s a 2021 chassis, but by the time they finish the build, it’s the 2022 model year so they issue an MSO for the RV as a 2022 model.

    Like 5
  2. Ralph

    Sorry but asking too much for this one. Stepfather had one of these without the camper. It was slow as dirt. This needs a ton of work, and the sketchy paint work will be expensive to fix. When I see a repaint that looks this poor, often wonder what else the owner did half assed. YMMV

    Like 15
    • Anne Press Member

      This is a rare collectable and a classic with excellent gas mileage and lots of room. The paint job was done by a professional and it’s a fiberglass body. Thank you

  3. AMCFAN

    This would be awesome to restore and take to an all import event. This painted up and slammed with the proper tuner wheels would be a major hit. A vintage Skyline nose would be over the top. Who needs speed as long as you get there.

    Seems the ad has best offer so hopefully the seller has room. Most of these mini campers are Toyota making this Datsun kind of special. I call it a good find.

    Like 6
  4. Car Nut Tacoma

    Sweet! I’ve never seen a Datsun motorhome. Assuming parts are there or available, I can see this being a good restoration or renovation.

    Like 2
  5. Fahrvergnugen Fahrvergnugen Member

    The RV sleeps six?? Six WHAT??

    Like 8
    • JC

      Six Possums…lol.

      Like 2
    • Anne Press Member

      Extra height better than my prior Toyota my son is 6′ 4″ and can easy walk around its a fiberglass Chinook camper top with so much potential very rare only 60 made a real home feeling. Thankyou for your interest

  6. Car Nut Tacoma

    If only more pics were posted. I like to see as much of the vehicle as possible.

    Like 2
  7. Scott L.

    Looks right at home in a field with growth all around it.

    Like 1
  8. Suttree

    Anemic underpowered engine and drum brakes all around.
    No thanks.

    Like 1
    • Bryan Cohn

      These had disc front brakes, drum rear. The predecessor, the 520 pick up was a drum brake truck.
      If it weren’t as rusty as a tin shed left in the rain forest it might be a worthy project but woooooooooooooo dogies!

  9. Car Nut Tacoma

    You have to wonder why Nissan didn’t provide the Datsun 620 Truck with a more powerful engine than this. Toyota offered the 20R engine for their Hilux truck. The last time I checked, the engine for the Toyota delivered 95hp and 120lbs-ft of torque. That may not seem like much by today’s standard for a pickup truck, but for a compact truck like this, I thought it was perfect.

    • Bryan Cohn

      The L20B made 2 more hp than the 20R, 97 hp vs 95 hp. Both were and still are dead reliable engines that if maintained will still be around with the cockroaches after we humans have run our course. :) I will agree that both the Datsun and Toyota trucks would have benefited from the straight 6 engines the companies made at the time! Imagine a Datsun 620 or 720 truck with the L28 straight 6 and fuel injection from the Z or a Toyota truck with the 2.0 liter M-UE from the Supra in them? Cool!

  10. Bryan Cohn

    Would be a cool RV to own if the tin worm hadn’t won the war.

  11. Erik

    “Health problems” that cause a sale and a high asking price seems to have become code for “I bought it low with high hopes…it’s in worse condition than I thought….it costs too much to bring back to life…I am too lazy or impatient to get the necessary work done…I don’t have the money to get it done…maybe I was fooled but maybe I can find a greater fool than myself to buy it for way more than I paid for it and in the end suffer from my same ‘health problems’ in the end”.

    Like 1
    • Anne Press Member

      This is a rare collectable and a classic with excellent gas mileage and lots of room. The paint job was done by a professional and it’s a fiberglass body. Serious buyers know what a classic this is
      Thank you

  12. TimM

    What is the real price for this pos??? I want to put the whole truck in a tree as a hunting blind that I could stay in!!!

    Like 1

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