16,000km course that circumnavigates a continent

The first international rally that Nissan Motor entered was the 6th Australian Rally (official name: 1958 Around Australia Mobilgas Trial), held from August 20 to September 7, 1958. This contest, which was the longest in the world at that time, was a 16,000-kilometer endurance trial that went clockwise around the Australian continent. In fact, it was so grueling that after 1958 it was never held again.
Entered in the 1958 event were 67 vehicles from all over the world. From Japan there were 2 Datsun 210s and 3 Toyopets. In Class A (under 1,000cc), the Datsuns shone, coming in 1st and 4th. The Datsun 210, which had gone on sale the previous year, was an ambitious model, powered by Nissan’s first OHV engine (Type C). After appearing in a Los Angeles motor show for foreign imports in March 1958, exports to the US started in September. Most of the models sold in the US market at that time were full-size, but thanks to the 210’s achievements in the Australian rally, it attracted a great deal of attention when it was exhibited in a New York motor show the following April. This laid the foundation for Nissan’s exports to America.

1958 Around Australia Mobilgas Trial course


No.19 (Fuji) crosses the goal line decorated with a carp streamer. Although it was Nissan’s first attempt at the Mobilgas Trial, both Datsun 210s completed the course, coming in 1st and 4th in their class.

Extra fuel tanks were added because of the long distances to be covered. There was also a curtain behind the front seats to enable someone to take a nap in the back.

A compass was installed just below the front passenger seat to facilitate long hours of driving through featureless outback.