Daily Driving the 240z

Post by Mark

240z

Back in April I bought a 1973 Datsun 240z that was in pretty great condition for a 43 year old car. When I initially decided to buy a classic car I didn’t want one I could just drive on the weekends every now and then but one I could drive every day if I wanted to. Since I bought it I’ve been driving it at least three times a week, mostly more, it’s become my evening car. The experience has been great so far even though I’ve had issues pop up.

Since I bought the car I’ve improved things in it quite a bit. I replaced all the bushings (rubber thingies that cushion metal parts) which removed all the rattling the car had, I installed an AC system so I could drive it during the summer, added a new carburetor to improve performance and a ton of other minuscule things all to make the car more driver friendly. And it’s worked. The car is more fun than ever to drive which is why I take it out so often.

steering240z

But the car isn’t without issues. Firstly because the car is so old, there are no warning lights meaning I need to keep my eye on all the gauges all the time. When the fuel is low you don’t get a cute little orange warning light to let you know, instead I need to check the fuel gauge often to make sure sure I’m good on fuel which I’m not used to doing. Such a small thing but I can imagine when the first car came out with a low fuel warning light people must have thought it was the smartest idea ever. What makes things even more unpractical in my car is the fuel dial isn’t even in the dashboard in front of me, it’s on top of the center console to my right and the second dial out of three there. Same with the temperature gauge, while driving home one day during Ramadan, one of the fan belts tore off and I didn’t notice. So my car started over heating and of course I didn’t get a warning light and since the temperature gauge is not in my field of view I didn’t notice the car over heating until water started splashing out from the radiator under the hood. Now I constantly look at all the dials every few minutes to make sure everything is working right. I also now drive around with my full tool kit in the trunk and a Haynes 240z Repair Manual just in case.

If you’re wondering how I still find parts for the car there is a shop locally I’ll be posting about soon called Hakimi where I’ve been getting my engine and mechanical parts from as well as from online shops like thezstore.com. Even with the random issues I’ve been having (and I’ve had a bunch but they’re too boring to list), I still love the car, a lot. I still enjoy driving it like I did the first day I got it and even more since the car drives a lot better now. Part of the fun of owning a classic car is fixing it up, it keeps things exciting.


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30 comments, add your own...


  1. Kuwait says:

    Pretty sure that lever on the right side of the steering column is not from the 43 year old original :|

  2. Khaled says:

    How many times have you gotten pulled over?

    • Mark says:

      none! but i’m expecting to any day now since after increasing the performance it’s become a lot easier to come out of a uturn sliding with tires smoking

  3. Arshad says:

    hey mark,
    you should try getting the glass headlight cover
    gives it a more classy look

  4. Omar Shafiq says:

    Amazing write up. I just love it when you post about the Z

  5. Navin says:

    Someone’s been skipping leg day…

  6. teenum says:

    How much did the whole project cost till date if you don’t mind me asking? You can give a range too. I am thinking of getting a classic car like this and restoring it but I feel I’ll end up spending a lot.

    • Ipsom says:

      A good car can be anywhere between 1000-2000 but if it’s over 2k it’s either already built and ready to go, or the seller is just ripping u off

      Spending: I think it all depends on how much u want. If your plan is just to make the car drivable and as reliable as possible, it shouldn’t be more then the car’s cost. Can’t give an exact range cause it really depends on the car’s condition
      Or if you want performance, do a high output engine swap, and really beef up the entire chassis, and just superfy the car… The sky is the limit in terms of costs for something like that lol

      • Mark says:

        for 1000kd you could find a 240z at a junkyard, for 2000 you can get a 240z but would be missing a lot of the original parts and not in very good condition. I kinda know the local 240z by heart now based on the amount of cars i looked at.

        • Ipsom says:

          Mhmm then maybe I underestimated by 1k, but I have seen some 2000ish cars that looked decent to me.

          • Mark says:

            A reader bought a 240z after reading my post and he paid around 2400 which i thought was a pretty good deal and i was feeling like i was ripped off but then it turned out he had original parts missing and the car needed a new paint job.

            Another reader who bought a 240z after reading my post paid more than me, had less original parts and an automatic gearbox.

            So really the prices are all over the place since no two cars are a like. So you could probably end up finding a decent car in the mid 2000s but that exact same car could be found in the mid 3000s.

            • Ipsom says:

              Aha I see, that last paragraph sums it up perfectly I’ll just add: no two cars are alike and no two sellers are alike either.
              I’m sure we both agree the seller has a huge influence lol

              • Mark says:

                yup seller and buyer. i’ve already gotten offers on my car more then what i paid for, one guy was even harassing me calling me up every day to try and buy it off me. it’s hard finding the right car with the right combo of things.

  7. Ipsom says:

    Inspiring 👍

  8. Mark says:

    I think I probably need to create a build page for my car similar to the one I have for my FJ http://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forums/member-build-ups/104592-2-48am-fj-build-black-2010-a.html

    That way I can keep track of all the things I’ve changed/fixed and everyone else can follow it as well. Still have to consider if I want to mention how much I’m paying, some things I like to leave private and how much I spend on stuff is one of them.

    • Ipsom says:

      I would be really really interested in it

      Don’t post the prices. just say I bought *part name* at *shop name* without stating its price

  9. Buzz says:

    Whats the HP of the engine?

  10. Ann-o-nimous says:

    Despite all the back breaking and bone crunching workouts and hard work rendered to you by the dedicated team of core fitness, it is heart breaking to see your pewny legs and forearm. Never miss leg or fore-arms day. And all those shakes and proteins were fake after all. Do some justice on the burgers at least, where does it all go dude???

  11. Ann-o-nimous says:

    Despite all the back breaking and bone crunching workouts and hard work rendered to you by the dedicated team of core fitness, it is heart breaking to see your pewny legs and forearm. Never miss leg or fore-arms day. And all those shakes and proteins were fake after all. Do some justice on the burgers at least, where does it all go dude???


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