HomePick of the DayPick of the Day: 1968 Datsun 1600 is back on the road

Pick of the Day: 1968 Datsun 1600 is back on the road

Estate-sale find had been in the garage for more than 40 years


The Pick of the Day, a 1968 Datsun 1600 roadster, is being advertised by its private seller on ClassicCars.com not as a barn-found car but as an “estate sale find!”

“According to the family estate, this 1968 Datsun 1600 Roadster hadn’t left its garage since some time in 1979 (the last year it was registered) where it’s second owner, who bought it in the early ’70s, had always parked it.  

“Over a period of many months, the owner carefully removed and tagged all exterior and interior chrome and trim pieces.  He also removed the interior soft goods, seat belts, door panels, carpet, etc.  

“His goal was to repaint the 4-speed convertible.  However, serious long-term health problems set in and forced the owner to finally abandon his goal of putting it back on the road with a fresh paint finish.  And so it sat, covered in the garage.”

After the owner’s death in late 2020, the family decided to include the car in the estate sale.

“Since it had been garaged, covered and not driven for 40 years and while it can’t be definitively documented, the family estate believes that the 27,860 odometer miles are accurate,” the seller reports in the advertisement.

Since leaving the garage, the seller says the SPL311 “has received a heavy dose of TLC, including the usual parts replacements and mechanical maintenance to get it up and running.  

“It comes with a perfect boot, boot? a tonneau cover as well as a new Haartz Stay Fast 3-window HD canvas top (not the cheaper vinyl type), some added pinstriping and racing stripes, outside mirrors, a new tinted windshield, new rubber weather stripping throughout, new period-correct dual red ring bias-ply tires, new carpet, new seats, smartly refreshed interior, new dash and much more.”

The owner notes that car wears its 1979 Texas license plates, “which are registered and current… It’s now ready for the next sporty car enthusiast to own and enjoy.”

The 1968 Datsun 1600 roadster came with a 96-horsepower, 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine linked to a 4-speed manual transmission.

The ’68 Datsun 1600 featured here is located in Austin, Texas, and is being offered for $22,500. To view this vehicle on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


  1. Do you have a shipping company selected for an out of state delivery such as to CA? Would we use an escrow agent? Any chance the original sales papers or Owners Manual are still with the car? Charles L. Wood, 79 yr old retired city attorney in San Francisco, with no cell phone.

    • Charles – if you haven’t already, click on the links in the article above to get to the actual ad for the car. The words in red are the link in the first line of the ad.

  2. You do fnd the interesting ones!
    An almost new R”old”ster in true glory.
    Also a fine car, and classic collectible in many ways – 1968 was early on for the Japanese invasion – and that was when Datsun/Toyo proved it with affordable smaller family rides. An MG takeoff really confounded the senses!

    Certainly, the later and much better performing 2000 (instead of the 1600 Fairlady) was a true game changer – leading to the 240Z acceptability. Amazingly, after a lifetime of British cars my most unusual experienced family got the Datsun 2000….and it is the only car that – while very few problems – actually just caught fire and died. An electrical meets gas problem. The early o TR7 that replaced it a great dependable car for years. Yes, weird.

    Regular problem of the post not being visible and redone….


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