Datsun Bluebird

1961 - 311 Series

The Datsun 311 went into production in November 1960 and continued on until August 1961. The 311 is pretty well identical to the previous 310 model in every way, except to the engine.


Nissan had been hard at work modifying the previous E series engine, and for the new E-1 engine thanks to a new dual throat downdraught Nikki carburettor with a vacuum secondary system, and some modifications to the cylinder head design, the new E1 engine boasts a twenty percent increase in power over the previous E engine. The new 1189cc OHV E1 engine now produces 60hp at 5000rpm. The truly impressive thing about this new engine was that this particular family of engines began it's life as an Austin engine, which Nissan were building under licence during the 1950s.

Thanks to the American engineer Donald Stone, and also Nissan's own engineers, this engine was now producing more power than anything Austin could achieve with their own design. In 1961 the Bluebird with it's single carburettor boasted 60hp, at the same time the most powerful Austin version was in the Austin Healey Sprite, this engine, fitted with twin SU carburettors, could only manage 48hp. Not only were they more powerful, they were also totally reliable, and Nissan (or more to the point Donald Stone) completely solved the oil leak problems which plagued the Austin engines. A base model version with the 988cc 45hp C-1 engine was also offered at the same time.

The grille on the 311 is the same as the previous 310, and is a narrow design with the indicators set either side of the grille. The later 312 model Bluebirds had a grille that partially enclosed the indicators.

  The tail lights on these early cars are a small kidney shape, later models have a larger upright bullet shape. The dashboard in the 310 and 311 series slopes backwards at about 20deg., in the 312 series the dash is more upright. These early models feature a pronounced droop at the back of the car, in the fold that travels along the side of the car. The fold runs straight along the side of the car, and then inexplicably drops downward at about a 75o angle about 3 inches from the tail light. On the 312 this fold is straight right through to the back of the car. 


Standard model 311s have no strips along the side of the car, but the deLuxe models feature a full length stainless steel strip. DeLuxe models also have stainless steel door window frames. The dashboard in the 310 and 311 series slopes backwards at about 20o, in the 312 series the dash is more upright, and is near vertical. Badges on the side of the car say Bluebird. and at the back of the car theu say either Datsun 1200 or Datsun 1000, depending on which engine was used.

The 311 was replaced in August 1961 with the Datsun Bluebird 312.


Model Variations


311 - Standard Model

 A standard model of the 311 was also available. The standard 311 had stainless steel strips that run along the side of the car, but they are a narrow profile and are only about 1cm wide, the deLuxe models have strips that are at least twice as wide. The Standard model also has painted door window frames, where the deLuxe has stainless steel frames.  


WP311 - Wagon Model

The Datsun WP311 is the station wagon version of the Datsun 310 sedan. It was introduced at the same time as the sedan. It features a two piece cargo door, with a framed glass section that opens upwards, and a lower section that folds downwards.
Mechanically it is the same as the sedan.


P311 - deLuxe Model

The Datsun P311 is the deLuxe version of the Datsun 311 sedan. Amongst other differences it has stainless steel door window frame trims and wider strips along the side of the car.   

1961 Datsun 311 Specifications

Length - 3910mm
Width - 1496mm
Height - 1460mm
Wheelbase - 2280mm
Weight - 870kg
Top speed - 1000 unknown
- 1200 125kph
Transmission - Column change 4 speed

Final drive
1000 - unknown
1200 - 4.625 : 1

C-1 Series Engine Specifications

1000 Engine
Model - C-1
OHV 4 Cylinder
Capacity - 988cc
Bore & Stroke 73x59mm
Power - 45bhp@4600rpm
Torque - 7.2kg/m@4000rpm
Compression - 8.0 : 1
Carburettor - Nikki dual throat down draught

E-1 Series Engine Specifications

1200 Engine
Model - E-1
OHV 4 Cylinder
Capacity - 1189cc
Bore & Stroke 73x71mm
Power - 60bhp@4800rpm
Torque- 67ft/lb@3600rpm
Compression - 8.2 : 1
Carburettor - Nikki 2D-30C dual throat down draught  

Built with Mobirise ‌

Offline Web Page Software