Could Datsun rise again?
Sources in Japan say that Nissan is considering a revival of the brand name that was discontinued in 1986, save for a special edition pickup truck sold in Japan in 2001.
According to Dow Jones, someone familiar with the plan confirms that Nissan is actively studying the idea of bringing the Datsun name back for use on a line of low-priced vehicles to be manufactured and sold in emerging markets. This would allow the company to tap into the cache of the recognizable name without tarnishing the image of Nissan with “cheap” cars.
Rumors of a Datsun revival first surfaced last summer, when Nissan reportedly began taking steps to protect the Datsun trademark, along with its iconic logo, which is a depiction of the rising sun on the Japanese national flag.
The Nikkei reports that the first car from the new Datsu would be built in Russia, India and Indonesia and sold for just $6,200, starting in 2014. Nissan has issued no official comment on the stories.
Datsun was created in 1931 by the DAT Motorcar company to market its smallest cars, so the move would be in keeping with the brand’s long history, if true. However, the reports say that there are no plans to reintroduce it in established markets like the United States.