Chiba Days #30 - The Fairlady

Hello everyone and welcome back to Tiro Finale for another chapter of Chiba Days. Today, we take a slight detour from out usual stream of anime/manga related content for another hobby true and close to my heart, automobiles. Today's chapter promises to be an interesting look into the history of Japanese automobile and a worthwhile read even if you are not that big into cars. In a recent trip to Ginza, I made sure to visit the "Nissan Crossing" to find a very rare piece of metal being displayed.

The Fairlady name is synonymous with being one of the most iconic series in Japanese sports car history. Alongside the Silvia and Skyline GT-R, the Fairlady makes up the three pillars of Nissan's sporting arm and is located firmly in between the aforementioned Silvia and Skyline. These pillars go a long way back in time, so far back that back then Nissan was still split into Datsun (the import arm) and Nissan (the domestic arm). 

Over in the states, the Fairlady series is better known as the Z-series which is universally known as these days. And the Datsun Sports SPL213 marks the first ever sports coupe produced by Nissan/Datsun to carry the Fairlady name. Ever since then, the Fairlady has only grown in popularity with several models such as the 240Z now having obtained legendary status among both collectors and enthusiasts. 

While the Silvia/S-series was targeted at being a more affordable focused sports car and the Skyline GT-R the pinnacle of Nissan's automotive engineering, the Fairlady were positioned right in between the two with the goal of blending luxury and performance into a single package. This has not always gone as planned though with Nissan's luxury offerings often watering the car's innate performance significantly. Nevertheless, that is a story for another day.

Staring at the red and white coupe of the yesteryear, it occurred to me that this is the first ever SPL213 Fairlady I have ever seen. While that fact did not fall lightly upon me, it certainly did to many passerby who were notably more excited the last time Nissan had their Vision 2020 GT-R up on display. While I could certainly understand why, it was still quite a pity to see this icon of history go unnoticed by many.

At first glance, it may be easy to brush up the Fairlady's design as being simple and of its time. But upon closer inspection, you begin to realize that such curves and lines are not something we see in everyday cars today. Due to tighter restrictions and more cost-effective manufacturing processes, many of these flowing curves are doomed in the past with many of today's cars looking like they were designed using a computer. While I cannot doubt that modern beautiful cars certainly exist, it is also a fact that they do not make them like they used to.

Next to the car itself, Nissan was kind enough to provide a little information about the car's history and its technical specifications. Of course, the technical specifications are nothing to shout about considering the car is now 50+ years old. But, the story of how it got to be named never ceases to entertain me. It goes, then president of Nissan, Katsuji Kawamata, loved the My Fair Lady play so much, he decided to name the car after it. Several decades on, the name still sticks.

With that, we come to the end of this little history lesson and detour as I leave you with a picture of Nissan's lovely VR38DETT engine. Rest assured, we will be back to usual anime/manga content again tomorrow. Until then, thank you so much and have yourself a great day ahead!


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