Penny Ante Racing






Updates on my build are HERE

There were Datsuns in 1932?

Yes, there were datsuns in 1932. They were micro cars; the 1930s equivalent to the modern Japanese kei car or the European city car. In the 1930s, Japan allowed cars with 500cc engines to be driven without a licence(JSAE, Nissan, Madely, Togo pg. 11). During this time the DAT company - a manufacturer of full-size cars and trucks - decided to produce a small vehicle for this micro-car market. They called the new model of car "datson"; i.e. the little son of the full sized DAT cars. The name was quickly changed to "datsun" (The Nissan Heritage Museum, source of this picture, has more details). DAT was bought out by Tobata Casting, which was part of Nippon Sangyo (a.k.a. "Nissan"), but they continued to call the small car "datsun".

So what did the 1932 datsun look like?

Roughly, like an Austin seven. Beyond that, the details seem to vary from car to car. It is possible that they were still coach built to customers' specifications back then. I'm basing my replica on the phaeton bodied 1932 datsun that is depicted in Datsun promotional literature, die cast toys, and stamps.

The Japanese Society of Automotive Engineers describes this car as a 1932 Type 11. (It appears identical to the 1933 Type 12, differing only in the size of the engine.) This car has fenders with sides (i.e. reminiscent of a 1934 ford), a horizontal lip below the grill shell, and a rounded rear end...features I plan to include in my replica.