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Z of the Month
June 2014

1976 - 280Z
Owned by Bryan G.
Empire Z Member
(Click images for larger photos)


In 1977, I was eight years old and in second grade. Even then, I remember being in love with Datsun Zs. I remember talking about them with friends and stopping to look any time one went by. I honestly thought they were the coolest cars on the planet. So in August 2012, when I purchased my 1976 280Z for $2500, I fulfilled my boyhood dream.

It was also back in the 70s that I first saw cars with off center racing stripes, and I became obsessed with them as well. When I decided to repaint my car, I really wanted those stripes. The only problem I had was what colors to use? I felt I needed to keep the car green, but I really didnít like the way yellow, gold, or white stripes looked on green. I got the idea of using silver from Philadelphia Eagles football helmets. The car you see is the car I as a 10 year old boy back in 1979 would have loved.

When I purchased the car, I was totally unaware that California had frozen the emissions cut off at the 1976 model year; neither did I realize how much that would affect what I could and could not do to the engine.  For now the L28 engine is completely stock, and I am not sure what I will do in the future because of emissions laws.  My mechanical knowledge is very limited, but I am slowly learning as I go.

The car I bought was a project that needed a lot of work. I thought 3 years was a good time frame to have the car rebuilt and looking good. Eighteen months in, I am moving a lot faster than I initially intended, but I have also realized there is a lot more to do than I ever imagined; however, I am having the time of my life with my green car. 

So far I have had the following done:

-          - New airflow meter, thermostat, and fuel injector just to pass emissions

-          - Rear shocks

-          - Replaced Oil Pan

-          - Replaced Clutch

-          - Reupholstered seats and replaced center consol

-          - Replaced all rubber bushings

-          - Replaced and chromed front and rear bumper

-          - New bumper ends on front

-          - Installed front air dam

-          - Striped car to metal, rust repair, repaint (exterior and door jams)

-          - Replaced all rubber molding on windows and doors

-          - Repaint rims and add fake spinners

Whatís Next?

-          - I am looking in to options to make the car more secure from theft

-          - Stereo system

-          - Repainting and cleaning up engine compartment

Thanks for looking !!

Bryan G.