Photography by Patrick Parong (@patrickparong)
With 57% of the Popular Vote, the winner of the PASMAG Tuner Battlegrounds award category competition at Driven Aftermarket AutoShow: Winnipeg is Alex Mira and his 1977 Datsun 280Z!
Alex Mira’s father was his inspiration when he was growing up, and his father’s photos of all the cool cars he owned in the past certainly stuck with him throughout the years. One car in particular stayed at the forefront of Mira’s brain - his old man’s Datsun. When he was just 15 years old, he decided to follow in his dad’s footsteps, and after saving up all of his birthday and Christmas gift money, he searched for “Datsun” on Craigslist in Arizona where his father was vacationing at the time. Little did he know that this would be the beginning of his absolute obsession.
Once his 1977 Datsun 280Z was home, Mira and his father spent countless hours learning and teaching each other about late ‘70s fuel injection, and what kind of modifications could be done to the car in general. At the time, with school and work taking up most of his hours, the budget for his build and time to do it were tight. When high school was over, however, his full-time job began, and he finally had some spare money and time to commit to the car.
His spirited driving at a young age tested the limits of the 1977 Datsun’s components. As parts started to break, a full build was in the cards. The L28’s block was bored out to a 3.0L, with high compression internals and power-bolstering mods added throughout. Tuned on a Megasquirt 2 programmable system, the L-series achieved a peppy 200 whp - plenty for this platform.
Lowered on Eibach 1.25-inch lowering springs and Tokico Ilumina adjustable struts, the car’s look began to change. A shaved rear bumper, MSA Type 2 front air dam, and rear window louvers rounded out the classic styling, and a fresh coat of Gun Metallic and Midnight Blue from Nissan’s 370Z options brought the look to a new level. Finishing things off at ground level is a set of 16-inch Rota wheels wrapped in Toyo tires. To add a touch of modern flare, Dapper lighting carbon fiber hydrodipped headlight housings were paired with LED halos.
With a custom carbon fiber grey and blue interior, as well as an impressive Pioneer and Alpine audio system, the car is a well rounded example of a resto-mod classic Datsun, and its overall quality has helped Mira take home a handful of trophies and awards from shows all over. Another job well done by a great father and son duo!
Alex Mira's 1977 Datsun 280Z is featured in PASMAG #153. Click HERE to order.