Just as comic books were once considered cheap, disposable things, vintage Japanese economy cars and trucks are now beginning to be appreciated as collector’s items. The simple, well built engines would run reliably for hundreds of thousands of miles, and the lightweight bodies were great for gas mileage. But the thin metal was prone to rust, and the vehicles were otherwise just treated as pure transportation and driven into the ground. Excellent examples are now pretty hard to find.
This ’71 Datsun pickup hails from the salt-free roads of the Pacific Northwest and has clearly had a sheltered life, as evidenced by the dent-free bed and unmarred, original chrome bumpers. The “driver quality” repaint is said to be the original color and looks just fine for a pickup. It’s said to be a one-owner truck in “excellent mechanical condition,” and the cosmetics seem to confirm the stated 110k miles.
It’s currently registered on specialty vehicle plates, which also bodes well for its condition, as it shows the previous owner considered it a collectible rather than just a pickup. Even so, it’ll pay to have this one checked out for rust issues—especially around the rocker panels and floor.