EUROPEAN ROADSTER MAGAZINE ARTICLES
There were few articles of note in European magazines during the Roadster's production run. The first of any description was published as early as 1962 in the German Magazine Revue. The cars tested were a Fairlady SPL213 and a Bluebird 1200, imported to Austria by a prospective Datsun importer.
Most contemporary English commentary on the Roadster was confined to the Monte Carlo Rallies of 1968 and 1969, although the Roadster was mention in general articles covering the booming Japanese car industry.
Since the late 1980s there have been a surprising number of articles in the English classic car press, given the few cars over here, many of them favourable. The important articles are listed below. If you know of any more European articles, especially Scandinavian articles of the early 1960s, please E-Mail The Classic Fairlady Roadster Register.
"Datsun 2000 Road Test" - Moss, Stirling - Popular Imported Cars. January 1970.
Stirling Moss, the former Grand Prix driver, was probably the first Englishman to test drive the Datsun 2000. Whilst not overboard about the car, he commented that 'the Datsun 2000 is a good sports car in the old tradition', and of the gearbox he said 'the speed with which one could change gear was only limited by the speed of one's hand'.
When I met Stirling Moss to discuss the article, he was most upset that his name had been spellt 'Sterling' throughout the piece.
"Lady Killer" - Clark, Carroll - Classic & Sportscar (England). May 1988
A none too serious 3 page feature on an SCCA 1600 race car, with a well researched half page history of the roadster. US Roadster guru Stan Chernoff gets a mention in this article. Excellent photography.
"Datsun Fairlady 2000 Sports" - Classic & Sportscar (England). June 1990.
Short half page feature on an imported 2000 SRL311. Their verdict:- "Surprisingly capable and different from the herd of European 2-seaters". The whereabouts of this car is not known.
"Flirting with a Fairlady" - Hodder, Martin & Browne, Geoff - Classic Car Weekly (England). September 18th 1991.
Full colour two page centrefold article comparing a silver Fairlady 1600 with an MGB. Very favourable comparison. The car has since returned to Japan.
"Far Eastern Force" - Hulber, Simon - Classic Car Weekly (England). August 26th 1992.
Feature on Japanese Sports Car Day at the Goodwood racing circuit. Photo & discussion on 1600 Sports 'MUF625F. Roadster buffs can cross reference this article with an article in Datsun Roadster Review (Fall 1992) & the Australian DatChat (Dec'92/ Jan'93).
"A Datsun that got Triumph Worried" - Classic & Sportscar (England). July 1993.
Short but nonetheless important piece on a Datsun 1500 SPL310 imported by Triumph in 1965 from the USA. (This move reputedly followed the 1963 Japanese Grand Prix meeting, Touring Class, when a Triumph was beaten into second place by Genechiro Tawara in a Fairlady 1500). The whereabouts of this car is not known.
"Sparring Partners" - Dixon, Mark & Smith, Russ - Popular Classics (England). November 1994.
5 page colour article comparing a red 1600 SPL311 with an MGB. Quite a favourable comparison and some nice photos. Previously owned by a Register member who worked for Sony, this 1600 was bought by Manuel Romao de Souza, then Sales Director of Nissan in Portugal.
"As Geracos Z" - Mota, Francisco - Auto Motor (Portugal). February 1995.
Excellent colour Road Test of the Datsun 1600 featured in the Popular Classics article above, a 240Z also owned by Manuel, and a Nissan 300ZX Twin Turbo.
"Austin's Rising Son" - Sharratt, Barney - Classic Cars (England). March 1995.
Accurate 5 page history of post war Nissan and the influence of Austin engine design on the Nissan range. Interview with Nissan chief of production Teiichi Hara. Includes a short discussion on roadster series and pictures of S211 and SR311.
"Different Four Strokes" - Practical Classics (England). January 1997.
A rare appearance for a Datsun 2000 in a British publication, and the first time a Roadster was featured on the front cover of a British classic car monthly. The article compares WVO 408G, Rob Beddington's high windscreen 2000, with a Morgan 4/4, Porsche 912, Triumph TR4, and TVR Grantura. Although Phil Bell, the writer, enthused about the Datsun on the day, it was not chosen as his favourite car for the article.
"Sun rises on Eastern Classics" - Roberts, Andrew - Classic Car Weekly (England) August 12 1998.
Resume of the 1998 Japanese Auto Extravaganza. Nice photo of WVO408G & the 'Chorley Nissan' 1600. The first show in England to include two Roadsters.
"Driving our Ads - Datsun Fairlady" - Classic Cars (England). October 1998.
Full page colour article describing a Solex aspirated Canadian imported 2000. Verdict:- 'a chic alternative to an MGB, that offers performance and refiinement'.
"50 Greatest Sports Cars" - Classic Cars (England). June 1999.
The Datsun Fairlady is included in a 50 Greatest Sports Cars feature. Comments include 'Looks great, offers a civilised ride and can be persuaded to handle. For:- It's not an MGB - Against:- It's not as simple to keep on the road as an MGB.'
Classic Z Register Magazine
The Roadster Register has a dedicated slot in the sister Register's quarterly magazine.
Z Club Magazine
Various appearances in the magazine including show reports, charity runs, etc.
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