1973 Datsun 240Z
|Written by Sports Car Market|
|Friday, 31 January 2003 16:00|
Few realize the roots of Nissan reach back to 1912, when a young man named Masujiro Hashimoto created a car. The car was named DAT, after three family member's initials. By 1934, the cars were Datsuns and the company was Nissan. By the late 1950s, Yuraka Katayama, a young engineer educated in America, advocated both the use of racing to develop the breed and the idea of a car designed for the very different roads and drivers in America.
Katayama hired noted German designer Dr. Albrecht Graf von Goertz, who had been involved in the creation of the BMW 507. He and the Nissan styling staff developed the design while Katayama engineered the drivetrain and built the prototype. However, Nissan and Yamaha could not agree on the engine design and the project was shelved. Later, Goertz and Yamaha took the engine and prototype to Toyota and the result was the Toyota 2000GT, an original and striking design.