BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

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This 1971 Datsun 521 pickup is finished in Cactus Green over a matching interior and powered by a 1.6L inline-four mated to a 4-speed manual transmission. Said to be a lifelong California truck, it was acquired as a project in 2015 by the seller, a former ASE Master Tech and operator of an independent Datsun shop who is reportedly its third owner. A mechanical refurbishment was subsequently carried out using new old-stock parts where possible, and it has since been driven approximately 6,000 miles including a recent 1,500-mile road trip with no reported issues. This 521 is offered with records from the recent work and a clean California title in the seller’s name.

The Cactus Green paint is said to be largely original and is photographed in detail in the gallery below. A locking fuel door was a factory option, and this one has been repainted along with the side mirrors under current ownership, while a few small dings and scuffs are visible around the body. Replacement items include the windshield, front and rear window rubber, and the side window scrapers and felts.

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

Factory steel wheels wear polished hubcaps and a newer set of whitewall tires. Brake work included replacement of the master cylinder, wheel cylinders, shoes, springs, flex lines front and rear, and one hard line up front. Front and rear brake drums were bead blasted, machined, and painted, and their adjusters were lubricated. The front wheel bearings were repacked and fitted with new seals.

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

The gallery contains several photos of the bed area and its hinged cover.

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

The cab is finished in matching light green with factory options including an AM radio, a locking glove box, and interior door light switches. The black dashboard has been fitted with a carpeted cover to conceal cracks in the top pad and the vinyl bench seat wears an aftermarket cover. Door cards are original, while the factory shift knob has been replaced with a new old-stock piece in black. The green factory floor mats remain under the fitted carpet and are partially visible in gallery photos. A new old-stock Datsun speaker has been installed behind the seat and wired in parallel to the existing dash speaker.

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

The seller replaced the original dash lighting with LED bulbs, installed new door switches, replaced the dome light and turn signal flasher, and replaced or repaired the defroster vents and hoses as needed. All the interior accessories are reported to be functional, and the 5-digit odometer displays just under 48,400 miles.

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

The carbureted 1.6L inline-four was factory rated at 94 horsepower with 100 lb-ft of torque, and sends power to the rear wheels through a 4-speed manual transmission. A list of work performed under the seller’s ownership is provided in the gallery below, with highlights including:

  • Replaced head gasket
  • Replaced radiator, upgraded internals with 3-core configuration
  • Replaced water pump, thermostat, and cooling hoses
  • Replaced heater core and heater hoses
  • Flushed coolant and pressure tested system
  • Valve clearance check, cover gasket replaced
  • Replaced starter and alternator
  • Overhauled distributor
  • Replaced plugs, wires, cap, rotor, and air filter
  • Replaced exhaust manifold and muffler
  • Drained and cleaned fuel tank, replaced fuel filter
  • Replaced throttle cable
  • Recent oil change
  • Recent compression check with 170-175 psi reported

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

Several photos are provided to illustrate condition of the chassis, underbody, and suspension components. 

BaT Auction: 1971 Datsun 521 Pickup

A stack of refurbishment receipts and invoices will be included by the seller.

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