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 Post subject: Happy Birthday, 240Z
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:12 am 

Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 13181
Location: CT
If this hadn't been sent to me this morning by our Chicago member Tengu, I would have completely forgotten it until it was too late to mention:
* * * * * * * *
"Welcome to 365 Days of Motoring
An Everyday Journey Through Motoring History, Facts & Trivia

Belt up and enjoy this 365-day ride as you cruise past the most momentous motoring events in history. Packed with fascinating facts about races, motorists and the history of the mighty engine, this is a must-visit web site for any car enthusiast.

On This Day
Wednesday 22nd October 1969
48 years ago

The Datsun 240Z sportscar was introduced. The first draft of the Datsun 240Z was created by German car designer Dr. Albrecht Graf von Goertz, a man who co-designed both the BMW 507 and the Porsche 911. The car was to be a joint project between Datusn and Yamaha but a lasting agreement couldn’t be reached and as such, plans for the car were put on ice. Nissan’s Chief Designer Yoshihiko Matsuo couldn’t bear to see the project on the shelf for too long and finally managed to get approval to build the car as a 100% Nissan project. The original design was modified but the influences of both the E-Type Jaguar and Porsche 911 (Me: and the Ferrari 275GTB) are still quite apparent in the finished styling. Performance from its sporty 2.4-litre power unit that owed a lot to the BMC C-Series as well as Mercedes-Benz's straight-six, (Me: extended straight-four) was more than ample. Being a Datsun, reliability was a given, but the agile (if tail-happy) handling was a pleasant surprise. During its five year run, more than 150,000 were produced, but survivors are now seriously appreciating. Rust has been its main enemy, so be careful when buying, even if you're buying a restored example".
* * * * * * * *
We are talking, of course, about cars #6 thru #13. HLS30-00006 was never titled or intended for public sale. It was a photo-op showcar intended to make the carshow circuits and introduce the Z to the world. Our CTZCC Executive Advisor Bob Sharp fell in love with it at the 1969 New York Auto Show but found he couldn't order one to race. Datsun told him he would have to wait for a damaged car. Just a few long hours later #6 was in fact damaged at the Toronto Auto Show when a bikini model sat on the roof and dented it. (I suspect Bob might have hired her to do that 8) ). Datsun called Bob in the middle of the night and told him if he wanted the car (the only one in existence at that moment), to Bring a Trailer. Bob was there the next morning and came home with #6. He raced it in C Production and set many SCCA track records with it, often beating "better" cars in A and B Production and winning the first of his 6 SCCA C Production world titles with it. HLS30-0006 is presently owned by our CTZCC Rochester member, eye doctor Allan Robbins.

Cars# HLS30-00007 thru 00012 were designated factory racers, and most of them have been accounted for today, including #0008. Car #8 was raced successfully in C Production for several years, piloted by notable names. Today #8 is owned by our CTZCC NY member, dentist Tom Bork.

On 22Oct69 the first STREET-legal 240z (intended for public ownership) (HLS30-00013, or 'lucky 13') was released for sale to the USA. It arrived in Hampton Roads VA and made its way to NC. Today Lucky 13 is owned by our local CTZCC member Rick Morgan.

While some (most) of us would argue about the origin of the 240 and the engine design as printed in the Birthday story, we all agree on the dates of arrival and the cars involved. Before #13 was located (after 32 years in secret hibernation), the earliest-known survivor had been car#16, owned by our CTZCC Florida member and Z collector Jimbo Frederick.

So the CTZCC is steeped in history of the early 240 cars and in the names which made the car world-famous. Forgive me for not remembering this historic date in time to remind you all about it during the picnic. One year we actually sang Happy Birthday to Rick's #13. We surely should have done so this year, but Ross' birthday and Bill Moreau's tribute completely over-washed my memory. Duhhh.

So step out to the garage and pat your Z today, and remind it of its ancestry. The Z is officially 48 years old today. Happy Birthday! 8) :thumbs_up:


1970 240Z

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