Nostalgia and love are what most of us feel when thinking about our first cars. Our minds flash back to that purchase, the experience of settling behind the wheel and that magical moment when the engine sprang to life. As the key turned, so our personal horizons expanded. The new car meant freedom, mobility and the chance to explore.

It’s a feeling, says Datsun South Africa that cuts across generations and applies especially to the Datsun brand, which has a proud history of introducing affordable car ownership, and the opportunities that mobility brings, to thousands of South Africans.

Datsun ownership often turns into ‘Datsunlove’ – an enchantment that lasts for years.

So, when Datsun owners of all generations were asked to help celebrate the milestone of 200 000 global sales since reintroduction a few short years ago, it was natural that South African buyers - some of the greatest Datsun fans on earth - would jump at the chance to showcase their beloved Datsuns, by way of a poster competition.

Their overwhelming sentiments were on display for all to see on social media. 

The most common word used to describe the various rides was ‘baby’- appropriate enough when you consider just how pampered most of the cars have become. Then, of course, there were the brave souls; one buyer proclaimed: ‘Best Day of my Life! – Second Best Day My Wedding Day’ when describing buying his Datsun GO. Another pictured a mother’s two children and her Datsun GO, describing all three as ‘my babies’.

“We were delighted with the response to the #Datsunlove competition, which reinforced the fact that more than 11 500 South Africans have joined the global Datsun family since the brand was reintroduced here in 2014. The enthusiasm and love for their cars shone through in every entry,” says Des Fenner, General Manager of Datsun South Africa.

“Unfortunately, there can only be one overall winner. A lucky Desireen Govinder from Midrand, Gauteng, will soon be flying off to Japan with a partner to visit the Zama Heritage Garage in Tokyo.”

“This is a rare honour as visits to the Zama Heritage Garage are by invitation only. Desireen will be one of the few South Africans to enter the Garage on the grounds of Nissan’s Oppama Motor Plant. Also known as the Nissan DNA Museum, the cars in the Garage track the history of Datsun from the early 1900s and offers visitors a glimpse of some of the most legendary cars ever to emerge from the Datsun factory.”

“Congratulations Desireen. Your poster showing off your new Datsun GO, the obvious excitement on your face and your caption: ‘For the love of my car! The very 1st one too’ embodied everything about the Datsun GO that South Africans have embraced since sales of the vehicle began in South Africa two years ago.”

Other #Datsunlove winners were:

  • Themba Vilakazi of Gauteng who claimed the second prize of a local Datsun experience; and
  • Annalicia Venter of Pretoria, with the third prize of a shopping spree.

“May your ‘Datsunlove’ continue into your motoring future,” says Des Fenner.

To view the winning posters visit:




Datsun originated in Japan as DAT-GO (the DAT-car) almost a century ago in 1914. The word DAT means ‘lightning-fast’ in Japanese but is also a reference to the three financiers who supported the business at the time – namely Mssrs. Den, Aoyama and Takeuchi – an acronym of the first letter of each name. Using the same logic, it was promoted as Durable, Attractive and Trustworthy, or DAT for short.

In 1933, Nissan’s founding father Yoshisuke Aikawa took over the business with a vision of “mobility for all”. The introduction of a light-weight, economical yet resilient car to meet the aspirations of young Japanese people in the early 1930s was named the ‘son of DAT’ – Datson - which later changed to Datsun. Local engineering and mass-production made the founder’s dream a reality.


Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. announced the return of the Datsun brand, Nissan's third global brand, alongside Nissan and Infiniti, in March 2012. Datsun will provide a sustainable motoring experience to optimistic up-and-coming customers in high-growth markets. Datsun represents 80 years of accumulated Japanese car-making expertise and is an important part of Nissan's DNA. Datsun already started sales in India and Indonesia, while sales in Russia and South Africa will commence later in 2014.


Nissan South Africa is the operational hub for Regional Business Unit South, serving Nissan’s key South Africa market and 42 other countries in Sub Saharan Africa, including Angola, Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria. In South Africa, the company offers a range of 28 vehicles under the Nissan and Infiniti brands, including the popular locally-produced Nissan light commercial vehicles - the NP200 half ton pickup and NP300 one-ton Hardbody – produced at the company’s Rosslyn plant, north west of Pretoria. In 2013, the company made history with the introduction of South Africa’s first electric vehicle, Nissan’s flagship Nissan LEAF. This will be followed in 2014 by the reintroduction of the iconic Datsun brand, as well as the launch of the new Qashqai crossover and new X-Trail sports utility vehicle. Nissan South Africa is one of the top five automotive companies in South Africa. For more information visit our website at