Eiji Hosomi's Datsun 240z



We feel our latest feature car here at Auszcar.com is rather special. You could be forgiven for believing only such a Z exists in a place such as Japan. However this stunning Datsun 240z with Nissan Fairlady ZG styling is located right in Virginia. Featuring all the Japanese Domestic market goodies as only available on the Fairlady ZG model.

Ever wondered what you could do with the old L28?

As the Zcar grows more and more popular with age. The thought of an engine swap may become a harder pill to swallow. The very thought makes some purists cringe. So what's a performance car enthusiast meant to do?

Now we don't want to start arguements over what's best when it comes to engine choice, but it's hard to deny that Eiji Hosomi may have found the perfect solution to both modified and purist with his wild and we mean very wild L31. That's an L28 engine bored and stroked from 2.8ltr to 3.1ltr for the uninitiated. Unlike many builds we have seen over the years, this build has been extremely extensive. Infact literally the only original bits left to this engine are the block itself, the cylinder head itself and the valve cover. It appears everything else has been replaced by a superior or lighter aftermarket product.

New Fire in the old Dinosaur

The old L28 has gone from producing a conservative 180HP (depending on the measurement unit) to a supercar status of over 300HP. As Eiji says he loves the fact that these "old dinosaur engines" have so much development history. Infact as Eiji explains later, in Japan the L28 was one of the most powerful street engines available for many years. As a result many modifications and performance combinations have been tried and tested.

The L28(L31) now manages to compete with more modern V8's, turbo's and even Ferrari's. The best thing about Eiji's car though is the awesome sound.

The Exterior Of The 240zg Is As Impressive As The Engine

After focusing so much time on the engine and performance of this Datsun 240z. We should remind you that it is infact infused with Nissan Fairlady 240ZG style. Known internally by the factory as HS30-H although the suffix H was never on the body stamp. The Nissan 240zg was designed with improved aero dynamic features such as the Gnose (front nose cone) and chrome trimmed headlight covers. The ZG also featured fender flares to allow for wider wheels in racing. Unique to the Japanese market and found on Zeds in Japan was the fender mirrors, which tops off the Japanese domestic market look.

The bright orange colour is not an original ZG colour code, but it certainly looks the goods. The Watanabe wheels and rear (also known as bre) 432 style spoiler complete the aggressive look.

The Story behind the Datsun 240z and it's build

Hi everyone. Thank you for the opportunity to be featured on your great Zed webpage!

My name is Eiji and I reside in Virginia (USA). This is my 1973 240Z. The production date is August 1973 with vin HLS30-170408. I have never seen an August 73 production 240Z, which leads me to believe this was one of the last 240Zs produced.

I feel a special connection to this Z in number of ways. First, I was also born in 1973 and second, we both were born in Japan and came to the US, still kicking.

In 1995, I was living in Cleveland, Ohio, and I really wanted a 240Z so I went look for the nicest one I could find. Keep in mind this was still pre-Internet days (at least I didn’t know of Internet at that time), so my search was pretty much limited to the Ohio area. In Ohio where it snows a whole bunch and we get spray salt in the winter, all I could find were rusty pigs.

So I gave up on it and got a 1969 Corvette Stingray. A long story short, I liked the aggressive muscle car look, but I wasn’t impressed with V8’s or American cars at all, and the fact that it kept breaking down every other day, so I was done with it within a year.

Fast forward a few years, I went through one 280Z and one 240Z, and in 2003 I bought this orange 73 240 from Northcoast Nissan of Ohio (ironically!), where it had been fully restored. It had a bored out L24 with performance cam, so it was fun to drive, but it wasn’t fast or powerful.

Currently it has a 3.1L fully modified L28 with 6 slide-valve carburetors. The engine was built (by me) in drag race spec. Just to give you a brief summary of the spec, it is N42 block with water jacket filler cement in it, fully modified LD28 crankshaft, Kameari 138mm rods, Kameari 89mm pistons, coupled with fully tuned, argon welded N42 based head with 46mm/38mm and Wako 75S cam. The carburettors are unique to most people, they are 6 slide valve carburettors. Unlike butterfly style carbs (Solex, Weber, etc), slide valve carbs are much newer in design and concept and much more efficient. I built the engine in Japan with the help of my friends, and brought it over to the US. Many people find it hard to believe but a naturally aspirated, small (only 3.1liter) displacement, dinosaur L-engine can outperform many Turbo cars, American V8, or Ferraris (Not fully modified such engines though).

Unlike the US, Japan didn’t get a wide range of big displacement or high performance engines, and L28 had been the fastest engine available in Japan for years till RBs came out, so everyone and their brothers modified L28. And after 20+ years of modification history in Japan, naturally aspirated dinosaur L-engine can be turned into such a wicked monster. I find such craftsmanship and the never-give-up spirit of a dinosaur L-engine so beautiful and this to me is Spirit of Japan, and hence I named my 240Z, Yamato Damashii Z. (Yamato Damashii means Spirit of Japan in Japanese).

I like L-engines (4cyl and 6cyl), and I promote the true performance and beauty of naturally aspirated L-engines.

If you have questions, or if you are in need of high performance parts, please visit my website at www.datsunspirit.com or email me at eiji@datsunspirit.com thank you.

Member Ride Specifications

Vehicle Category Details and Modifications
Name: Eiji Hosomi
Previous Rides: Corvette Stingray
  • L28 bored and stroked to L31 Spec.
  • N42 argon welded head with 46mm-38mm valves
  • Wako 75S cam
  • modified LD28 crankshaft
  • Wako ATI Crank Pulley Kit
  • Kameari 89mm (29mm height) pistons
  • N42 block (with block filler cement)
  • Kameari Type-I 138mm rods
  • 6 slide-valve carburetors Mikuni's
  • Gearbox: FS5W71B modified: Route-6 ultra close ratio (2.569 1.745 1.308 1.000 0.7515)
Suspension & Brakes:
  • Front Struts HR31 Turbo
  • Rear Struts 280z
  • Front and Rear control arms have aluminium camber bushings
  • The rest of bushings are Urethane bushings from Prothane
  • Tokiko HTS dampers (infinantly adjustable)
  • spring (F: 5kg L=180mm +helper springs
  • R: 4kg L=230mm)
  • pillow-ball upper mounts
  • Brakes Front: R32 Skyline GTR Rotors and Calipers
  • Brakes Rear: S13 180SX
Wheels and Tyres:
  • F: Watanabe 15x9" (-13) + Toyo RA1 205/50-15
  • R: Watanabe 15x10" (-25) + Toyo RA1 225-50-15
  • Race: Watanabe A-type 14x7.5 (-3.5)
  • F: Toyo RA1 205/50-15
  • R: Toyo RA1 225-50-15
  • Race: M&H Drag Radials 235-60-14
  • Nardi Steering Wheel
  • Corbeau Racing Seats
  • ZG Look with Gnose chrome headlight covers
  • Fender Mirrors
  • ZG Flares
  • 432r Rear Spoiler
  • Ford Mustang Tangerine Orange

¼ Mile: 12.4 last year