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Mike Kelly

260z body same as 280z?

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Hi, I was wondering if a 74 260z is the same body as a 74 280z? I also want to know if I can put a 73 240z engine into a 260z or maybe even a 74 280z. My options right now are dealing with my rusted out 73 240z with a good engine and I was thinking of buying a decent body that I can restore for either a 260z or a 74 280z (if thats possible). I'm a little bit new to the Datsun but I defenately want a 240z or 260z for their body type. I'm personally not a fan of the added length to the 280z.

Thanks!

Mike

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I'm not an expert on this, but I think the 240, 260, and 280 all share the same basic S30 body. There are 2+2 variants for the 260 and 280 I believe, so maybe you are thinking of that? In the US there was no 74 280z, the only 74 was the 260z and the 280z began in 75. I think that is the same for Canada. -Mike

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I read that the 71 has some styling changes to the rear hatch and some stuff directly around it, but the everything is the same, as far as body, I think. Not sure of the year, but it was early 240 for that change.

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A late 74 260 with a build date of 9/74-11/74 would have the same body as a 280Z with the same bumpers used on the 75-76 280Z. Door panels, door lock mechanisms, hinges, etc., as well as dashboards, consoles and other assorted interior parts also changed at that point. In the North American market, which I assume includes Canada, there were no 280Zs until the 1975 model so the "1974 280Z" you speak of didn't exist. Not in the U.S., Canada or anywhere else in the world. You can put the 73 engine in any year Z or ZX for that matter but with the 75 and up models you'd be converting a fuel injected car to carbureators. Do some reading on this site and you'll discover the differences between the different model years.

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Alright well here are my options... and you guys are awesome for replying so fast I really appreciate it!

-I own a 73 240z with a poor body probably beyond repair :(, but the engine is good (the one i own is in my display picture)

-I have been looking at some local sources and I have found a man who "claims" his 74 Datsun is a 280z. So maybe its a 75?

So what I was thinking of doing was putting my engine into the 280z and calling it a day. Now what are some things I have to look out for here? I know that the door mechanics are different and there are different carbs for the engines. But my main concern is the body type. I really want a body without the longer back of the 280z. The one this guy has appears to have a shorter back. If they are roughly the same I can put two together and come out with something better. Anyways he is asking a reasonable price for it. I have yet to go to him and see how bad the rust is. I can probably get some pictures for you people if you really want. That way you could all help me out and I would be on my way to becoming a proud datsun owner.

Thanks for listening!

Mike

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All the cars 69-78 had the same profile. If the car you are looking at 'has a longer back' make sure it's not a 2+2 (four seater).

There was no 2+2 before 1974, so if you have a 73 and think the 74 'has a shorter back' chances are you are haveing an optical illusion played on you, all 2-seat coupes have the same roofline and hatch slope.

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<<

-I have been looking at some local sources and I have found a man who "claims" his 74 Datsun is a 280z. So maybe its a 75?

>>

I am not sure about BC Canada, but just down the road in Oregon (and the rest of the US) I used to own a 74 260z, and about 1/2 way through the year, Nissan started to use the newer unibody, which put the turn signals in the grill area (due to larger bumpers being put on). Due to regulations, and I'm not sure if the regs started in 75 or 1/2 way through 74 or if Nissan just started using early, but the 1975 280z and the 1974 260z have essentially the same unibody design and interior. The differences would be that the '74.5' 260z I had, had a 2.6 liter motor, along with 'square top' SU carburetors. Mine actually had aftermarket downdraft Weber carbs, but it had the big, shiny bumpers of the 75 280z (which I think, when they and the rubber are in excellent condition, are the best looking of the big bumper style s30s)...***but--if they aren't in perfect condition, then the 77-78 bumpers look better when in any condition, imo.

When you talk 'longer 280z' if I had to guess, I might think you are talking about the 79 and later 280zx, which looks very similiar to the 70-78 s30 but it at the very least 'looks longer'...I'm not sure if it is, but it does look longer.

You'd be safe with the 280z, as with the exception of a very few minor differences in exterior looks, the body style is the same as the 70 240z. They are very different in most ways (carbs vs. injection, 100 miles of extra wire, heavy shock absorbers/bumpers for federal regs, smog improvements), but that awesome shape/design of the exterior remains the same. ie. you can use a door from a 78 on a 70 (pretty sure) and you can use a hood from a 78 for a 70. We are of course talking 2 door body style, not the 2+2s with a little back seat, of course.

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don't forget about the front lower body panels and grills. they're different on the 240's and 280's...and hood vents on 280's didn't exist on 240-260's

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True,

the lower front valance is different, mainly because the big bumpers would have covered up the 240z's turn signals (so they're in the grill now)...for better or worse, instead of being a rectangular opening, the grill opening was changed to a rounded appearance, on the bottom edges, which, imo, don't quite look right, in comparison to a 240...

who am i to say though...everyone have a good week!

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I am needing fenders and doors for my 76 280, from what I gather I can use the fenders and doors from a 260 with no issue. Is this a pretty accurate statement?

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