The Datsun Cherry, known later as the Nissan Cherry, was a series of small cars which formed Nissan’s first front-wheel drive supermini model line. The Cherry featured the front-engine, front-wheel-drive layout.
In the UK market, it debuted just before the company’s surge in sales, which saw it sell just over 6,000 cars in 1971 and more than 30,000 the following year. Although its successor was launched in 1974, such was the original model’s popularity on the UK market that it was not replaced there until 1976.
Before combining with Nissan Motors, the Prince Motor Company plan of development was to mass-produce a front-engine, front-wheel drive car, but after the Prince and Nissan merger of 1966, the Cherry was released in 1970 as Nissan’s first front-wheel drive car. The E10 generation featured four-wheel independent suspension.
The Japanese domestic market Cherry X-1 model featured twin-carbureted A12T engine with dual-sidedraft Hitachi carburetors.
In Europe, E10 was called Datsun 100A (the Datsun brand being used in place of Nissan in the European market at that time) (with A10 engine) or Datsun 120A (A12, but this engine was only available with the coupé body style, also a semi-automatic version of the ordinary car available in 1978). With the launch of the Cherry in 1971, Datsun’s prominence in the UK market grew. In the early 1970s, as the British auto-industry faltered, Datsun led the charge of Japanese auto-manufacturers rapidly gaining market share in the UK.
Assembly Oppama Plant, Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Japan
Also Called Datsun 1000, Datsun 100A, Datsun 120A
Body and chassis
3-door hatchback (also a 3 door van)
988cc A10 I4 OHV (In Line 4 Cylinder)
1.2L A12 I4 OHV (In Line 4 Cylinder)
4-speed manual (all-synchromesh)
2,337 mm (92 in)
Length 3,607 mm (142 in)
Width 1,473 mm (58 in)
Height 1,380 mm (54 in)
670 kg (1,477 lb)