Datsun is a Japanese based automotive manufacturer owned by Nissan. Datsun's original production run began in 1931. Between 1958 and 1986, the cars exported to foreign markets by Nissan were identified as Datsun only. In 1986 Nissan eliminated the Datsun name, but re-established it in June 2013 as the brand for cheaper vehicles manufactured for emerging markets.
In 1931, Dat Motorcar Co. chose to name its new small car "Datson", a name which indicated the new car's smaller size when compared to the DAT's larger vehicle already in production. When Nissan took control of DAT in 1934, the name "Datson" was changed to "Datsun", because "son" also means "loss" in Japanese and also to honor the sun depicted in the national flag – thus the name Datsun: Dattosan. Nissan shut down the Datsun brand in March 1986. The Datsun name is globally known for the 510, Fairlady roadsters, the Fairlady (S30 240Z, 260Z, 280Z) S130 280ZX coupes, and recently, the Go hatchback.
The use of the Datsun name in the American market derives from the name Nissan used for its production cars. In fact, the cars produced by Nissan already used the Datsun brand name, a successful brand in Japan since 1932, long before World War II. Before the entry into the American market in 1958, Nissan did not produce cars under the Nissan brand name, but only trucks. Their in-house-designed cars were always branded as Datsuns. Hence, for Nissan executives it would be only natural to use such a successful name when exporting models to the United States.
|Founder||Nissan Motor Co.|
|Revenue||$2.3 b (Nissan Motor Co.)|
|Owner(s)||Nissan Motor Co.|