Datsun is a well-known multi-national car maker that is owned by Nissan Motor Company. It was originally founded in year 1931 but was later discontinued in 1986. With an aim to increase its sales figures in Asian markets like India, South Africa, Russia, and Indonesia, Nissan Motor Company brought Datsun back as a low-cost brand in 2013. It currently retails three models, the Go hatchback, Go Plus mini estate and the entry-level Redigo hatchback. All three are offered with MT/AT options and with petrol power only.
At present, Datsun cars are being built by the joint Renault-Nissan facility located in Chennai. The facility is also known for producing Renault and Nissan cars in India along with K9K engines. The facility has a production capacity of 4.80 lakhs per annum.
Founder & First Car
Long before the birth of ‘Datsun’ brand, a passenger car named DAT was released in year 1914 in Tokyo by Kaishinsha Motorcar works. The new car’s name was derived from second names of its partners - Kenjiro Den, Rokuro Aoyama, Meitaro Takeuchi. In 1918, the company was renamed as Kaishinsha Motorcar Co. and the name was further changed to DAT Motorcar Co. DAT Motors in year 1925. It began manufacturing trucks along with DAT passenger cars. It was in year 1926 when Tokyo based DAT Motors ventured with Osaka to transform into DAT Automobile manufacturing Co. Ltd. In 1926. Thereafter, DAT Automobile Manufacturing began developing a 495cc car called “Datson” which inferred as son of DAT. The name was further changed into “Datsun” in 1933 two years later. The first prototype of this car was produced in year1931 while the production version of this car was named as Datson Type 10 later.
Datsun cars straight away go for first time and entry level customers in India. Its models are mainly known for their fuel efficiency and good looks. The brand is gradually developing its grip over the market especially in neo middle-class segment. Pricing is another major reason for their growing demand which also happens to be one of the preferred requirements of Indian middle class buyers.
Datsun are presently being sold via Nissan dealerships. Since, the brand is a low cost one it faces straight competition from the entry-level models from Hyundai and Maruti Suzuki.