The Bluebird was branded in Japan as a Datsun until 1979/80 at the release of the 910 series, the Sunny until 1980/81, a year before it changed to front-wheel-drive, and the Fairlady until 1969/70, when it was replaced by the Fairlady Z.  The specs sheet hereunder, handles the post-war Japanese Datsuns and successors (including the hand-built Silvia, announced at the September 1964 Tokyo Motor Show for Japan as Datsun Coupe 1500, but eventually sold as Nissan Silvia at its introduction in April 1965, presumably because of its elevated price).

The 1955 Datsun 110 (860cc) and 1957/58 210 (1000cc) still had a beam front axle with leaf springs, to be replaced by an independent wishbone front suspension with torsion springs in the last series 2-door wagon/pickup 223 series (1960/61). 

Datsun Bluebird

The above mentioned front suspension, but with coil springs, was initiated in the 1959/60 310 Bluebird sedan still with the rigid leaf suspension at the rear, and continued in the 1963/64 410 series, which now had a monocoque body.  However, the 1965 Datsun 2-door wagon/(single and double cab) pickup 520 series, with similar looks as the 410, still was on a separate chassis and had a wishbone front suspension with torsion springs, while in Taiwan, a 4-door double cab pick-up and wagon were created by Yue Loong. 

Then for 1967/68 came the famous 510 Bluebird with a strut front suspension and semi-trailing independent rear coil suspension, but the wagon kept the rigid leaf rear suspension, that was originally intended for the sedans as well and used in countries like Mexico and Taiwan, and the taxi in Japan by 1971/72, to be succeeded by the 1973 Nissan Violet (710).  The 510 series was called as such in the USA and 1300/1400/1600 in the export, and continued for a year next to the 610 series.  In Japan from September 1970, a year before the arrival of the Bluebird-U, the L18 1770cc engine was introduced in the SSS for a year.

The 1971/72 Bluebird-U (export 160B/180B) 610 series retained the semi-trailing arms at the rear, except for the wagon.  In the United Kingdom, ‘Bluebird’ was added to the number/letter designations.

The 1976/77 Bluebird (810 series) reverted to the rigid leaf rear suspension for the Japanese domestic and general export markets, except for the SSS and 6-cylinder models, and then after a year changed to Nissan’s first live axle with coils, earlier in 1977 introduced in the Laurel.  In Europe and Australia the semi-trailing independent rear suspension was retained, and in some markets like Australia and Sweden replaced by the live axle as well by 1977/78 for the sedan models.  By 1979, the ‘Bluebird’ name was generally adopted in Europe.  The Datsun 810 cars for North America (6-cylinder) kept the semi-trailing arms.  In all cases however, the wagons had the rigid leaf rear suspension.

The next generation 1979/80 910 series Bluebird arrived as a Nissan in Japan, but was elsewhere still a Datsun until 1983/84.  By 1982, the ‘Bluebird’ name was adopted generally in the export worldwide.  From 1982, wagons for Japan (but not the business-oriented ‘van’), Europe and USA/Canada adopted the 4-link coil rear suspension. 

Datsun Sunny

The 1966 Sunny had a transverse leaf wishbone front suspension, and a rigid leaf rear suspension.  The larger 1970 models changed to front struts, retained by the 1973 (210) models.  The 310 series 1977/78 models received a live axle at the rear with coils, except for the wagon.  In 1979 arrived a wagon with lowered roof on the rear coil suspension.  This generation became a Nissan in Japan for 1980/1981.


The 1965 Datsun 2-door wagon/pickup 520 series was replaced in 1972 by the 620 (single and 2- and 4-door double cab) pickup.  Yue Loong again created a 4-door wagon, as well as a 3-door wagon with side benches, and its own 4-door double cab pick-up.


Japanese Cars 1962-1977