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Last year, my new husband died, leaving me his car. It is a 1982 Datsun 200-SX, 5-speed overdrive, power-assisted steering, power windows, sun roof, multi-warning system, vocalized 6-function warning system, and more. He loved his car and kept it in prime condition (the engine, not necessarily the paint job). It has only 88,000 miles.

This car is so foreign to me. I have not driven it for this year, but have kept the battery charged, etc.

Could someone please give me insight regarding what to look for now that I will drive it? Engine noises, what the idle should be, how much "rev" to give it when shifting, etc. Assume that I am an idiot and know nothing.

Would it have damaged the car by not driving it this past year?

Thank you for any assistance you can offer.

jkat
 

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NF Mod/Nissan Master Tech
2006 Pathfinder LE, 2003 Frontier SVE
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It's really no differant---operation-wise---than any other car. Obviously, bad knocks, taps and rattles are just as much of a problem with a Datsun as a Buick, Ford or Land Rover. Maintenance is key to preserving the life. Their weekest point was the body, which would rust and rot out especially in high salt areas. Also, the light rear tending to make for poor traction in wet and snowy weather. Reading the owner's manual, if it still has it, will answer many questions you have pertaining to the vehicle.

As far as sitting a vehicle over a long period, seals tend to suffer the most. It not uncommon for master cylinders, hydraulic clutch parts and brake wheel cylinders to start leaking after a long sit. Have the vehicle checked out by a competant mechanic before putting it back on the road.
 
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