If you have even a passing interest in vintage Japanese cars, this machine needs no introduction. The number 46 BRE Datsun 510 is perhaps the poster child for racing underdogs. When it first hit the SCCA Trans Am scene in the early '70s, it lined up against several storied marques. It took lots of wrench time and plenty of determination, but the BRE team pushed to two national championship wins against rival Alfa Romeo in 1971 and 1972. Race cars have evolved at about the same clip as telephones in the last 30 years, but there's still something special about watching this machine tackle a race course.

Road & Track recently turned to Indycar driver Alex Lloyd to get his interpretation of what makes this particular car so important. The sound quality in the video below could certainly use some love, but we'll never turn down the excuse to burn 12 minutes of our work day watching this machine eat up some tarmac in Memphis. Check out the video for yourself below.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 14 Comments
      CarCrazy24
      • 2 Years Ago
      What a beauty, that's one hell of a car
      lasertekk
      • 2 Years Ago
      Underdog? No, not at all. Corporate Datsun (Nissan) backed the team with cash, materials and engineering assistance. Not just a little even. If the Alfa privateers and other teams had gotten half the assistance the Datsun team had, the outcome would have been very different.
      Mercennarius
      • 2 Years Ago
      The 510s were excellent cars for SCCA races back in the day....and still do well today.
      gtv4rudy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Back then, this 510 was state of the art.
        rcavaretti
        • 2 Years Ago
        @gtv4rudy
        Nice utility engine, not unlike some the converted tractor engines the British were using in the 50's and 60's in some of their 'sports cars'. Let's use the comparison everyone is else here is using. Let's compare that 'engine' to the all alloy twin cam the Alfa was fielding. A more refined and elegant powerplant.
      Craig
      • 2 Years Ago
      Go 510 - go!!! What a fantastic car. Made out of nothing but goes like stink when made with stuff!
      Slizzo
      • 2 Years Ago
      Adam Carolla races a BRE 510 all the time, and has many videos on the site with him driving it during vintage race events. Go check it out.
      RJC
      • 2 Years Ago
      You want a good a first witness report? I was there. I was 13 years old at the time. My father crewed for one of the teams. I remember the conversations they had at lunch. Everyone complained about the support they got and everyone else didn't. By the way, the driver someone was asking about is John Morton. My dad used to rave about his abilities. Theres great historical information at B-sedan.com
      Just Me
      • 2 Years Ago
      If only racing and race cars were this simple today. Add the safety equipment to bodies in white, tweak the suspension, brakes and engines within limits and have at it. I'm not a big fan of silhouette race cars that have purpose built everything.
      snap_understeer_ftw
      • 2 Years Ago
      what racecar of that level wouldn't have a LSD. Mr Lloyd is full of **** when he says there's no LSD?
      MikeInNC
      • 2 Years Ago
      The sound of this thing at 5:30, 8:50 and 9:30 is absolutely amazing. What a fantastic race car.
      IOMTT
      • 2 Years Ago
      Such a nice looking car. There were quite a few handsome little imports around in this era. Celica, Alfa, BMW 2002, Triumph Dolomite.
      jonnybimmer
      • 2 Years Ago
      Such a great car, love Datsuns. Anyone notice the windshield wipers "on" at 7:56?
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