Get to know more interesting facts about Nissan Motors, the Japanese automaker that’s currently the sixth largest in the world.
In 1952, Nissan entered a partnership with British automaker Austin, which benefited both companies. This allowed Nissan to build and sell British cars as well as use Austin patents, which would make a big influence on Nissan’s engine technology.
Nissan also used to have a booming aerospace industry. It designed and developed engines for the Lambda 4S-5 spacecraft which launched Japan’s first-ever satellite, the OHSUMI.
Nissan’s world headquarters is located in Nishi-Ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan. It is among the major Japanese companies having its headquarters in Nishi Ward, Yokohama’s business district.
In fact, Nissan is 102 years old this year (as of this writing). Although Nissan Motors was founded in 1933, it has its roots way back in 1914 when Kaishinsha Motorcar Works rolled out its first car named DAT. DAT was an acronym based on the first letters of the three company founders’ last names.
In 1932 Kaishinsha released a new car with a smaller, 495 cc engine car to comply with the new Japanese laws which allowed vehicles with 500 cc engines or lower on the road. They named the new vehicle Datson (meaning “son of DAT”). But they later changed it into Datsun, since “son” sounds akin to the Japanese word for “disadvantage.”
When Nissan acquired Datsun, the ample resources made from this acquisition allowed the company to produce its first mass-produced car, the Type 15, in 1934.
Neither Nissan nor Datsun is behind the Nissan’s luxury car, the Skyline. It was actually first built in 1957 by another Japanese car maker, Prince. Nissan and Prince merged during the 1960s, which brought a more luxurious lineup into the Nissan fold. The name “Prince” was subsequently scrapped and Skyline has been considered as a Nissan car since.
The Nisssan GTI-R carried a full-sized umbrella, tucked inside the car’s driver side doorframe compartment. We think that all cars should have one!
You can thank Nissan for the “sexy” part of marketing — pretty models smiling and standing next to cars at car shows.
In 1936 Nissan employed four women to showcase and advertise their cars to the public. In Japan in particular, being a car model is often seen as a respected and distinguished position. This occupation can even be passed from mother to daughter.
Nissan has revived the Datsun brand after almost three decades. The company released the Datsun Go, a slow, basic hatchback car that’s pretty affordable. However, it is available only in emerging markets. Although the first line of Datsu Go’s is available only in India, they will be also released in other selected countries such as Indonesia and South Africa.
Datsun officially changed its name into Nissan in 1986 for several reasons, mainly to make marketing a bit easier, and make it less confusing to consumers. However, many speculated the reason behind the name change was to do away with Datsun’s old image as a “rust bucket” during the 1970s.
Japan held its first motorsport competition, the All Japan Automobile Competition in 1936. Datsun entered the race with NL-75 which had a supercharged DOHC engine — quite an innovation at that time. Needless to say, Datsun won the race, which gave birth to Nissan’s illustrious racing history.