When I bought this little 1200 coupe back in 1998, it had a mere 28,000 miles on the clock and was in absolutely lovely condition. At the time I paid what was then considered to be really strong money for a Datsun, £1300! A lot considering that even now, ten years later, it’s only the best cars that fetch that kind of cash. Of course now they are incredibly rare here. Possibly the only criticism that could be made of its condition when I got it, was the rear panel which had at some time been replaced, no doubt due to previous accident damage. It wasn’t the tidiest repair and certainly not up to my standards, but the car looked perfectly presentable, so I left it alone. The coupe originally ran the registration SYD18M, but the seller wanted to keep the plate, which was a bit of a pity, but not a major problem.
All the time I owned the 1200 coupe, it remained pretty much as original, apart from a few changes of alloy wheels and some Japanese fender mirrors. I replaced one front wing, as a few rust bubbles had appeared after a few years, and then I repainted the whole front end. The colour match was excellent thankfully, so you couldn’t really tell. We traveled to Holland in it, and as far as Norway, via Germany Denmark and Sweden, and it always performed well, even averaging 42mpg over its 2700 mile trip to Norway and back.
By spring 2006 it was apparent that rust was beginning to take a hold, and I was faced with the choice of restoring it or selling it on to somebody else who would, and concentrating my efforts on restoring my 1200 pickup instead. The coupe got sold in the end, thankfully to a Datsun enthusiast who ran a body shop, so at least it would get the attention it needed. It was hard to part with this car and in some ways I wish I’d kept it but I can’t keep them all!