510 Weight notes
(by Mike Spreadbury and compiled
e-mails from the 510 list)

blank50.gif (825 bytes) Here is a bunch of data that I have collected over the years talking about various weights of 510s...

510 weights are pretty funny. The FIA papers for the 510 four-door sedan state that the car weighs 1907lbs. (FIA recognition number 1493). Another set of FIA papers (5397) state that the 1800SSS version of the 510 (four-door) weighs 1929 lbs. According to the March, 68 Road & Track road test for a four-door sedan they state that the vehicle weight is 2130lbs. The "bible" (Hot to Modify Datsun 510 610 240Z Engines & Chassis) says that a stock two-door weighs 2042 pounds "less spare tire, jack, wheel covers, outside mirror and carpeting."

Which is correct?  Well, I too have had many different weights with my 510. Let me explain,  When I first weighed the car (the 2210 pound weight) it was with an empty tank, no spare tire, or jack but with the VG30 with the stock ZX 5-speed. This car was stock in every other respect. No big wheels, no big brakes, no big differential, no roll cage, just a totally stock two-door with a V6. This weight was done at a local truck scale. 

Last summer, before the turbo engine or roll cage was installed, the car weighed 2342 pounds. This was with the big brakes, R200 diff, big 16" wheels, and Recaro seats. This weight was also done after the double a-arm modification was done. This weight was done with Steve Epperly's corner weights and is considered very accurate. 

Last fall I weighed the car, with the new full roll cage, and the turbo engine, and tank of gas and it weighed 2440 pounds. This weight was measured at a truck scale in Eugene. 

So, what is an accurate weight? Great question. Consider the differences in brakes, wheels, differentials, rollbars/roll cages when you decide on the final numbers.  Note: VG30ET complete weighs 392lbs. Anyone want to share their 510 weights for comparison? 

Dave Lum wrote; 
Stock tranny weight - no clue -   probably in the 65 lb range.
200SX tranny - 74 lbs.
280Z/Truck tranny - 84 lbs
VG30ET (turbo) tranny - 102 lbs.
VG30DE tranny -  120 lbs.   Food for thought. I sent off the LSD R160 the other day.  Shipping weight : 52lbs. An R200 I sent off was 84lbs, and a '81 truck 5-speed (like a Z-car) was 81lbs. Something to think about before stuffing in the biggest diff you can get under the car. I didn't think an R200 would weigh MORE than a 5-speed Z-car tranny.

Kelvin Dietz wrote ; I hung a VG30 with manifolds, headers and flywheel from a 1000lb scale. Came it at 355 lbs. A similarly equipped L20B, with SUs came in at 260lbs. That's 95lbs for those of you unwilling to do the math.... My car, empty trunk, full tank, L20b, 200sx trans, exactly 2100 lbs. Probably 20 lbs of thick battery cable from front to rear.  2 door.  Oh yeah, Panasports also.

Unknown wrote; My gutted 71 2 door with L20B, SUs, roadster 5 speed, R180 LSD and 8 point roll cage comes in at 1876#. No fiberglass, yet! Let's see, add a VG30, tyhat's 1971#, then subtract for the fiberglass stuff and add aluminum wheels instead of the steel I had on when I weighed it and I bet I can get to 1900#. 

From Ted Hedman;  For the weight conscious Bluebirds out there- Several years ago I had my car weighed on a set of Ruggles race car scales.   It was a '72 2 door with L20b (DGV carb and stock manifolding), 2" exhaust, 200SX 5 speed, stock interior w/ rubber mats, 4 speaker stereo w/ 100W amp, Turn 6 F&R anti-sway bars, 13x6 Enkies with 205/60-13 tires, empty trunk (except for battery) and a tank of gas. The car weighed 2205 lbs without driver.

The following weghts are listed in my '72 510 Factory Shop Manual for USA/Canada Models:

2050 2-door 4 speed 2150 2-door column shift automatic 2117 2-door floor shift automatic
2094 4-door 4 speed 2149 4-door column shift automatic 2161 4-door floor shift automatic
2216 Wagon 4 speed 2270 Wagon column shift automatic 2282 Wagon floor shift automatic

My guesses on where the extra weight was in my car versus the standard 2-door 4 speed weight of 2050?

L20B 30 lbs gas 20 lbs
5 speed trans 20 lbs stereo 25 lbs
Wheels/tires 20 lbs exhaust system 10 lbs
50A alternator 5 lbs coins in ashtray 0.25 lbs, junk in the glove box 1.5 lbs,and in the trunk 1 lbs, bugs in radiator .0001 lbs
sway bars 10 lbs
total                    142.75 lbs

factory 2 door 2050 lbs (with spare tire?) my car (theoretical)   2192.5 lbs my car (actual)  2205 lbs (w/o spare!) difference +12.5 lbs,  uncertainty +/-25 lbs? 

From Dennis Hale;  Michael brought up the subject of car weights SO here's mine: Pinkie weighs 1868 lbs with 75 lbs of ballast, JFZ brakes, plastic nose and plastic windows, 1800cc engine, R190 Diff, Roll cage, 3 gallons of gas, 13 X 7 wheels. The Bluebird weighs 2150 lbs with the 215 V-8, Muncie trans, plastic nose and windows, stock brakes, R180 Diff, rollcage, 13 X 10 wheels, and 3 gallons of gas. Unfortunately this car is classified with 1500 lb Lotus based stuff, like that is its' only problem....

From Mike Masson: We have a truckstop on I5 South in Everett WA with 2 State certified scales next to each other so you can get front to rear weight as well as overall weight.  I weighed my LZ2.2 72 2door with 280ZX 5spd, 280ZX coilover struts and brakes, R160 LSD Legacy diff, aluminum finned drums in back, Sentra SER Seats front and rear, but otherwise stripped interior (no carpet or floor mats) and now for the #'s.... 1200lbs Front   940lbs Rear 2140lbs Total

Martin Walter wrote :My Mini-Stock race car is 2285lbs including driver (170lbs)

51.5 frt 48.5rear, can't remember the cross weights.

Details are LZ22, dog-led 5speed. 12 gal fuel cell in rear, 1/2 full. everything stripped from car, inner door panels cut out, trunk cut out for fuel cell. R160 welded diff. battery in trunk. Kirky alluminum racing seat.

Why so heavy? I have about a 10 point cage, with additional bars around
the front of the rad, multiple door bars on both sides, severe strengthening
reinforcement etc. in the trunk (gotta protect that fuel cell, and increase
rear weight). Strengthened bumpers (bars inside), and nerf bars on either

If I cut out all the bars over and above the basic 6 point cage that is required I'd probably loose 300lbs min, but then it would crumple too easily and new shells are hard to find and too much work!

Gian Bowles wrote;I'm still moving around' But hears the last specs
LF 510 RF 410
LR 346 RR 452


In a SCCA legal EP 510
It has a L16, roadster 5sp, R160 diff.
BRE flares on metal fenders and the hood ribbing removed.
1 seat, A roll bar, 3 gauges, 2 switches a 13in streering wheel & pedals
Willwood on front, 240 drums rear & Libre 13X7 & 20 X 9.5 X 13 Foodyears

If it is not usefull, It's not in the car

Dave Carroll wrote; While I was doing my VG swap, I dug out the digital scales and weighed the motor coming out of the car(L18SSS), the motor going into the car(VG30E), and a bunch of stuff that was laying around the shop. Keep in mind the differences in engine accessories on some of these.

Complete L-18SSS w/SUs, SSS exhaust manifold, SSS dist., 10lb HKS flywheel, roadster clutch, gear reduction starter, 65 amp alternater, servo-synchro ZX 5sp, stock pan and ALL mounts 390 pounds

Complete VG30E w/Nikki 4bbl, modified TBI intake, weird Euro cast iron exhaust manifolds, Euro dist., 16lb. Euro flywheel, 300ZXT clutch, gear reduction starter, 65 amp alternater, '87 300ZX 5sp., 6 quart comp. pan, and ALL mounts 497 pounds

I know exactly what you are thinking 497-390=107 he's lying again, he said it gained 102 pounds! Well, I dropped off exactly 5 pounds when I circular filed those cast manifolds and installed my headers.

Complete L20B w/SUs, SSS exhaust manifold, dist., stock flywheel & clutch (unknown weight), stock alt., 200SX 5sp., stock pan and ALL mounts 404 pounds

Complete Stock L-16 with Jatco 3N71B automatic and all stock accessories and mounts 425 pounds

Jatco 3N71B auto trans. 149 pounds!
200SX 5 speed trans. 72 pounds
VG30DETT bare block w/main cap/girdle & bolts 132 pounds
VG30DETTcomplete cylinder head (1) 55 pounds
VG30DETTcrank - early style - two piece 40 pounds
VG30E crank 35 pounds
L-18 crank (fully counterweighted) 36 pounds
L-16 crank stock 31 pounds
219 casting SSS head complete 38 pounds
SSS SUs on manifold with linkage 12 pounds
R160 3.7 ratio open diff assy 56 pounds

Hopefully someone can find this info usefull. I have several VG30Es, a couple VG30DETTs, a VG30DE and the 5 speeds to go with them and I'll post the weights whenever I can (it will probably be a while unless someone volunteers to come over and help move stuff around (((HINT))). I (we?) will also weigh some other L stuff of interest as well as the rest of the VG individual engine parts. I will also note that my VG30E should really have it's "E" removed because it is carburetted. I don't have the heart to tell it so I will continue to use the E to specify SOHC since there were no carb'd VG30s imported to the US :-(

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