Back in the early 1980s, a popular show on TV was Eight Is Enough. Unlike real life, the show was about a family with eight kids (no birth control in this household) doing family things, but with a laugh track. One of the stars of the show was teenage heart-throb Willie Aames, who played one of the brothers David, Tommy, Nicholas, Billy Bob or something like that.
All I know is that he had a head of curly hair bushy enough to make any lead singer from an 80s metal band jealous. He also dated my aunt when I was growing up and I remember him occasionally pulling up in a sweet red or orange Datsun 240Z. I never talked to the guy, but I always lusted after his Z. And rightfully so.
The original Z car was produced from 1968-1978 and was Nissan’s first generation GT-class front-engine, rear-wheel drive car. With four-wheel independent suspension, a peppy 2.4L inline six-cylinder producing 151 hp, distinctive good looks, and terrific handling, the 240Z was a hit with US buyers and provided a low-cost alternative to more expensive offerings from BMW, Porsche, and Jaguar.
Although 260Z and 280Z successors would later arrive with bigger engines and other improvements, it’s the original 240Z that captures the hearts of nostalgic enthusiasts who appreciate the optimal combination of weight, balance, power, and handsome good looks. With over 150,000 units sold, it’s not too difficult to find one, but it is challenging to find one in good/excellent condition.
Such is the case of our featured Z, a 1972 reddish-orange number that has survived the test of time…and the molesting touch of boy racers with too much money and not enough sense. This particular example is completely original, adult-owned, and a no-rust So Cal car that has been lovingly cared for and well-maintained. With all new rubber hoses, belts, seals, trim, and mechanicals, this Z is ready to rock and roll and take you back to a different era of cheesy sitcoms, big hair, and sweet memories. I’m not sure this belonged to Willie, but it’s currently offered on Craigslist for $12,950.
Engine: 2.4L inline six-cylinder 151 hp
Transmission: 4-speed manual
Mileage: 70,000 miles
Unmodified, unmolested, no Juvenal add ons, original
Red/Orange ext (Color Code 110 red)
Southern Californian car
Never seen snow
Seldom seen rain
All new rubber
Rebuilt and painted suspension
Original non-pitted southern Californian windshield with new seals
All new brake parts
In great shape
Drive it anywhere
Starts right up
Goes solid down the road