After the release of the Eleck Peanuts in 1978, Kyosho releases its second electric off-road RC car in 1979. The Renault Alpine A310 was based on its brand new chassis called Rally Sports.
A Nissan 240Z and a Mercedes 280G followed the same year. All these models were made available on the European market in 1980 through the German importer Graupner.
During this period, many RC cars were made of aluminum and light steel. For this Nissan, Kyosho reused the design of its existing nitro cars.
The main chassis is made of two aluminum rails with specific forms. It supports the rear and front drivetrains.
The RC unit box attached to the chassis provides good protection to the electronics.
The battery is perpendiculary-placed at the rear, with the mechanical speed controller on top. There is enough space left for the steering servo, the power pack and the radio receiver.
The front suspension is of double wishbone type, including springs working as shock absorbers. Hardness is adjustable by changing the anchor points. The front knuckles are connected to the wishbone with ball joints in order to limit the wheel camber during suspension work.
There is no bearing or bushing at the front. The servo-saver is mounted on the axis which supports the body.
The rear suspension is of trailing arm type and all parts are made of aluminum. At the front, the springs work as shock absorbers. Bushings guide the wheel axles and the driving shafts are dog bones.
The transmission is filled with oil to lubricate the gears and the differential. As the motor mount is static, you need to change the motor pinion and the spur gear to modify the gear ratio. The protective cover should be gently tighten otherwise it may touch the spur gear.
The body was painted like the 1971 Nissan 240Z East African Safari Rally. The body was raised and the rear tires were changed to improve the off-road look.
The bodyset is a reproduction found in the best specialist store : MarwanRC.com. The lexan quality is very good and thicker than the original bodyset’s. The decals are perfectly reproduced and white stickers are opaque.
On the track, driving this car is surprising despite of its age.
The front drivetrain lets you turn with confidence due to its lack of reactivity. The Nissan rides well on off-road surface but there is a lot of chassis-roll when cornering due to the lack of hydraulic dampers. The differential really works well limiting the oversteer when accelerating. However, the transmission is noisy and both the suspension springs and the servo-saver are too soft.
The car is far from reaching speeds similar to modern models, but considering it dates from the beginnings of the RC off-road electric vehicles, the comparison is far from being ridiculous.
These cars were eclipsed by the success of Tamiya SRB chassis. Nevertheless, they are an important part of the RC panorama of the period when RC were mainly On-Road 1:12 cars and nitro buggies.
The tough aluminum structure is very representative of the “old school” manner. Despite of the very reasonable play in assembly, the quality of molded parts is very good considering the small size.
I have been fond of this Nissan for a long time since it is the basis of some Kyosho legendary models released a few years later. I especially think about the Scorpion which borrows the Nissan’s rear drivetrain and chassis.
I do really love this car: for me, it is more attractive than a Tamiya SRB and it has an undeniable charm on the track.
David From RC4ON.com
More pictures in gallery:
Graupner Datsun 240z