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Thread: Datsun Dealerships

  1. #1
    Supporting Member boyblunda's Avatar
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    Default Datsun Dealerships

    I am not trying to further arc up a situation here but I think we are all interested in subscribing to clarity and substantiation in discussing and defining matters of Datsun history. Not that I am a model for same but I do try.

    I have been reading the thread on Kats’ cars http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/s...d=25575&page=4 and noted the digression into the realm of the number of Datsun dealerships that existed in various countries in , or at the end of 1970. Some snips from the quotes from these posts are listed below but these extracts do not fully convey the context of all that was said.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Carl Beck
    In 1969/70 there were over 940 (later amended to 922) Datsun Dealers in the US, plus another 65 or so in Canada.... Can you name a country in the world that had over 10 Datsun Dealers outside North America?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Zedrally
    You serious Carl,
    10 Dealers outside the US, please, I supplied you with the list of Australian Dealers which listed over 330 Datsun Dealers.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Carl Beck
    With farther research I'm sure we can identify at least 10 Dealers in Australia as well - but so far we have only a list of Authorized Distributors there for 1970... some of which were still listed as Prince Distributors.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Carl Beck
    I'm not really sure that Nissan Motors Ltd. in Japan actually had franchised Dealerships, in the sense that we did here in America. Where large inventories of new cars were on display, large Parts Departments socked huge inventories of parts and Service Departments handled all warranty work and mechanical work after the sale.

    Quote
    Originally posted by HS30-H who queried whether :
    …… all situations in all territories should be compared using the situation in the USA as the benchmark.

    The topic is one that does interest me and raises questions that I would be interested in hearing more about. One of the difficulties here is that there could be varying understandings of what is a dealer or a distributor in various markets.

    The only contribution I can personally make to this discussion would be in support of Zedrally’s contention that there were more than 10 dealers in Australia in 1970. While I do not have a definitive list I can post these quotes from Denner George R. (1978?) Introducing Datsun To Australia, Endeavour Press Melbourne. The author was “totally involved in all facets of development from the first presentation of the 310 model Datsun at the Melbourne Motor Show in 1960 ……… to the establishment of a manufacturing plant.”

    The early introduction of Datsun, the first Japanese car ever imported into Australia, in the 1960’s was severely hampered not only by universal problems associated by the lack of supply from Japan, incorrect perceptions promoted by rival manufacturers, and importation and finance legislation that discriminated against Japanese vehicles.

    With specific regard to the development of a distributor and dealership network in Australia, there are some fundamental differences between Australia and other markets, not the least of which is a small and sparse population eg my home State of Western Australia is nearly a million square miles in area and only had a population just over a million people at the end of the 60’s and the Northern Territory is even more sparsely populated. This may have affected the style of dealerships and distributors in Australia when compared to those in other markets. Some early dealerships in Australia sold several makes of vehicle eg Datsuns and Studebakers where there was no direct rivalry between the two makes.

    Page 20 “Two small dealer outlets were established before any State Distributors were appointed … the first being Mitchell Flannery Motors in Shepparton Victoria and the second was Topline Motors in Mt Gambier South Australia.”

    Holyman Motors of Launceston Tasmania became the first Australian distributor in 1960. Distributors were subsequently appointed in all States by the end of 1961 and in the Northern Territory later in the decade.

    NOTE the difference in terminology between Distributors and Dealers. A distributor is responsible for dealing direct with the manufacturer and then on selling the vehicles to the dealer networks in their area of responsibility.

    In the first year of their operation, the respective State distributors appointed :
    27 dealers in Queensland
    15 in New South Wales
    12 in Victoria
    8 in South Australia
    5 in Tasmania
    0 in Western Australia

    A Northern Territory distributor was appointed in 1963 and quickly appointed three dealers.

    Page 31 In 1963 a National Spare Parts Store as established to help circumvent the problem of stocking the full range of parts for the geography of the Australian market and to establish a line of accessories as optional equipment.

    Each State Distributor committed to carry a full range of parts adequate to service all vehicles sold or operating in their respective territories.

    In 1966 the Nissan Company moved to take control of distribution in Victoria under the name of Datsun Motor Sales Co Pty Ltd but changed their name to Datsun (Australia) Pty Ltd later that month and then to Nissan Motor Company (Australia) Pty Ltd. It was also in 1966 that the first Australian assembled Datsun rolled off the assembly lines.

    Sales were increasing steadily and the success of Datsuns in their rally and racing program added to the profile of Datsun.

    Page 50 The result of a special Sales Incentive Scheme held for the period April to June 1967 resulted in 120 Australian Datsun dealers being taken to Tokyo to visit the International Motor Show.

    Sales continued to grow – particularly with the expansion of local manufacturing - and a repeat of the sales incentive scheme in 1970 again saw “many” P.58 Australian Datsun Dealers go to Expo 70 in 1970.

    Unfortunately, my sole reference does not include a list of dealers at any given point in time, but it does indicate that within the Australian use of the term “dealer”, there were at least 120 successful dealers (as determined by winning recognition under the Sales Incentive Scheme) in 1967 and that there is no reason to think that number would not have grown given the continued success of Datsun in the later part of the 1960’s. There were 67 dealers operating in Australia by the end of 1962.

    So depending on whether or not an Australian dealer is counted as a real dealer by whatever criterion might be applied, Zedrally might well be in the running for his “prize” for being the first to name a country outside the USA that had more than 10 dealers at the end of 1970. Zedrally, perhaps you might have more details or more specific information that could help us to further define this issue.

    People reading this post should also read others in the thread quoted above to get additional background on this matter from posts by those quoted above.
    Dave
    GRS30 010961 L26 148904 260Z 2+2 5/1976 manual black driven on fine days
    RS30 000812 was L26073225 (now L28) 260Z manual 1/1974 project car (refresh only)

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    Semi-retired admin Arne's Avatar
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    Default

    Well.....

    I guess you folks who feel this kind of stuff is important can have at it. From my point of view - that of a Datsun owner who wants to drive and maintain his car(s) - these topics are flavorless at best, and sometimes divisive at their worst.

    The fact of the matter is that after the amount of time that has passed, the chances of coming up with the "truth" are slim and none. We don't have access to the people who were involved, and their recollections may not jive anyway.

    And in the end, none of this type of history stuff will matter to me or my car(s) anyway.

    Enjoy, all...
    Arne - Former owner, HLS30-37705, 7/71, 905 Red
    Car blogs - 240Z - Porsche 911

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    Semi-retired admin Arne's Avatar
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    In retrospect folks, my post just above may be a bit harsh sounding. I'm sorry about that, and I blame it on being worked up over some non-Datsun stuff and it bled over. Sorry, all.
    Arne - Former owner, HLS30-37705, 7/71, 905 Red
    Car blogs - 240Z - Porsche 911

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    philo "Z" opher Zedrally's Avatar
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    I'm waiting for the cigar.....

    Actually, I don't really need to define/refine the situation any further, lest it devolve into a rather bitter us/them argument. The point was made.
    Mike of the Mire

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    Datsaholic Mr Camouflage's Avatar
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    Duncan Datsun in Perth (Melville i think) were operating in the 60's, and sold a number of Nissan Silvias, well one at least.
    www.nostalgictrio.com Skyline - Silvia - Fairlady Z
    www.ozdat.com The Australian Datsun site.
    www.cafepress.com/vintagedatsun

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    Hi Dave:
    Great idea. The history of Datsun/Nissan is an area of interest for me and several of my friends.

    I would like to know the answers to a lot of the questions you pose. So if anyone can find and publish some of the associated history such as you have done - it would be great.

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

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    Default Australian Distributors As At 1970

    Craig, Duncan Motors were the original Western Australian distributor and still operate as Duncan Nissan today which must make them one of the oldest dealers in Australia. At the time of their appointment in May 1961, Duncan Motors were also a British Ford Franchise specialising in truck sales. Duncan Nissan is now owned by the Automotive Holdings Group which deals in several makes of vehicles.


    Carl, the quote from yourself that I initially snipped was correct with regard to the fact that there were "few" Australian distributors at at the end of 1970. The list of distrbutors that I have been able to ascertain from my one reference reads :


    From 1966 Nissan Motor Co (Australia) Pty Ltd ran their own distribution in Victoria (initial distributor Arthur Wylie Motors through Hartnett Holdings) and in 1968 took over distribution in South Australia (from Carcycle of Cornell Ltd – David Cornell until 1964 then Exhibition Motors until 1968).

    Distribution in other States as at the end of 1970 was handled by the originally appointed distributors :

    New South Wales - Capitol Motors (Mr Arnold Glass)

    Northern Territory - Cavenagh Car Sales (Clem Chilman - Darwin Group Developments Pty Ltd)

    Queensland : Ira Berk (Qld) Pty Ltd - Ian Selvage

    Tasmania : Holyman Motors (Mr Ian Holyman) Launceston.

    Western Australia : Duncan Motor Co owned by Canberra based Gregory's Pty Ltd who in 1970 bought out the original distributor Duncan Motor Company (Bert Duncan)


    I know that this might be very dry information to some but I do feel that unless this sort of material is recorded soon while information might be verified and discussed for accuracy, that we will have misinformation and less informed debate in the future.
    Dave
    GRS30 010961 L26 148904 260Z 2+2 5/1976 manual black driven on fine days
    RS30 000812 was L26073225 (now L28) 260Z manual 1/1974 project car (refresh only)

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    Hi Dave:
    The 1970 Nissan Stockholders Report lists about 96 countries in which Nissan Motors Ltd. had distributors. Some distributors were also Dealers themselves it seems. I'm not sure all the Distributors listed were actually DATSUN distributors, but that list may include Nissan Distributors who handled Nissan Diesels and Nissan Fork Lifts etc. - in countries around the world.


    For Australia:

    Nissan Motor Company (Australia) Pty. Ltd. Melbourne, Victoria
    Datsun (Distribution) Pty. Ltd. - same street address as above

    Datsun (Distribution) S.A. Division Kenwick, S.A. Australia

    Capital 1 Motors Limited - Auburn, N.S.W. Australia

    Duncan Motor Co. Pty. Ltd. Perth, W.A. Australia

    Ira Berk (old) Pty. Ltd. Queensland, Australia

    Holyman Motors Pty. Ltd. Tasmania, Australia

    Cavenagh Car Sales Pty. Ltd. Northern Territory, Australia
    = = = = = = = = = = = =


    Ira Berk started as a Dealer in 1962 and celebrated his 20th Anniversary as a Datsun Dealer in 1982. Anyone know if he or his dealership is still around?

    Of course Nissan had a couple of Importers and a couple of Distributors in 1958, prior to forming NISSAN MOTORS IN USA in 1960. The reason that Mr. K. recommended Nissan take over its own sales and distribution in the US was that the distributors were not doing a good job of marketing and sales.

    Mitsubishi was the "Importer" with Chester G. Lubby, a Chevrolet Dealer in Forest Hills, New York, as the sole distributor for 22 Eastern States, April 29, 1958. Marubeni was the "Importer" with Woolverton Motors of North Hollywood, California as the Distributor in May of 1958 for the Western and Southwestern States.

    Both Distributors were already large organizations dealing in domestic and some foreign makes. They established subsidiaries, Luby Datsun Distributors and Western Datsun Distributors to handle their new line.

    Ray Lemke of San Diego was the first Datsun Dealer with sales starting in Oct. of 58, past the original Distributor/Dealers. In 1965 Lemke Datsun became the first Dealer to sell 100 cars in one month.

    Datsun USA had:
    122 Dealers in 1961
    144 Dealers in 1962
    225 Dealers in 1963
    ??? Dealers in 1964
    432 Dealers in 1965 (as of Nov. 65)
    ??? Dealers in 1966
    544 Dealers in 1967 (as of April 67)
    ??? Dealers in 1968
    640 Dealers in 1969 (as of Jan. 69)
    899 Dealers in 1970 (as of Jan. 70)
    922 Dealers in 1971 (as of Jan. 71)
    937 Dealers in 1972 (as of Jan. 72)

    The above does not include Dealers in the State of Hawaii which reported still to Japan.

    Many, if not most, of the original Dealers in 61/62 were used car lots or mechanical repair shops. Lemke was typical of the people that grew from mechanic, to millionaire with Datsun in the USA

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

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    Awesome guys.

    This is the kind of information we need, such things are important.
    You can't celebrate a make unless you know the date's, i.e. the
    first 240z was made in 1943 followed by "Yeah Right".

    If you get my drift, then clutch kick

    Good job Blunda

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    The cops! ! !

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