- The Datsun 240Z, when it came to the U.S. as a 1970 model, was a modern, reliable alternative to the British sports cars of the preceding decades.
- This particular 240Z is remarkably clean and has had only two owners since new.
- It features a 2.4-liter inline-six, a four-speed manual transmission, and 64,000 miles on the odometer.
Launched stateside in 1969 as a 1970 model, the Datsun 240Z had an impact that would be felt for decades. It offered a modern, reliable, and comparatively quick alternative to the British roadsters and sports cars that had for decades ruled the two-seat sporty import segment-and it effectively signaled the beginning of the end for reasonably priced British makes in the U.S.
That the example currently up on the online auction site Bring a Trailer has survived unmolested is surely due in part to its residence in the Southwest. It was purchased new in California and moved to Arizona in 2001 under the care of the original owner. This 240Z wears a coat of Lime #112 paint with minor touchups. The seller, who acquired the car in 2015, does not indicate if the finish is original. Approximately 2200 of the indicated 64,000 miles have been added at the hand of this current and second owner.
What we know is that it's sorted well enough to have taken third in its class at the 2019 La Jolla (California) Concours d'Elegance and that the car includes a factory tool kit, original manuals, and a clean Arizona title in the seller's name.
The mechanicals have also been cared for, the car benefiting from a complete brake overhaul (master cylinder, calipers, pads, rotors, shoes, and hoses), a new clutch master cylinder, new Hankook Optima tires, and rebuilt carburetors. The numbers-matching 2.4-liter inline-six engine has been fitted with an aftermarket header and exhaust and Pertronix electronic ignition. A four-speed manual transmission handles the gear swaps. Chassis maintenance includes new ball joints and tie-rod ends plus fresh bushings for the lower control arms, sway bar, and tension rod.
The interior features correct black vinyl, an AM/FM push-button radio, and a dealer-optional wood shift knob. The seller points to the crack-free dash, long a Z-car trouble point. The seller claims the gauges, lights, radio, power antenna, and, shockingly, the air conditioning, all work properly. True to form, the clock does not. While the emissions components have been removed, they can accompany the sale.
Twenty years ago, Z-cars-well, at least the ones that hadn't yet succumbed to the rust epidemic-were still a relatively common sight here in the States. But as the numbers dwindled and the initial target demographic aged and accumulated more disposable income, prices have been on a steady climb to previously unheard-of heights. If you've ever wanted a 240Z, now is the time to strike; we don't expect values to drop anytime soon.
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