85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

1980-1986 Datsun 720 forums. All 720-specific topics and discussion can be found here.
User avatar
pistolkeith
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2011 11:36 pm
Car: 1985 Nissan King Cab 720

85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby pistolkeith » Wed May 06, 2020 4:23 pm

Hey all! Its been a while between posts for me here and a lot has changed. What hasn't is my love for these wee trucks!

I have come across a 4X4 Bushmaster 720 that i'm potentially interested in buying. But am curious if anyone knows more about these?

What i know:
They were made as a "factory option" by a third-party company called 3matrix where basically they removed the back of the cab and the front of the deck to make the truck into a "Suburban" style truck. Bench seat in the rear and the classic 2 seats in the front(removing the little sideways seats found in the king cabs)

Are these suuuper rare? Therefore worth a lot? The one i have found is is seemingly decent shape. But he wants $2400CAD (~$1700USD) and it requires quite a lot of work. Likely a full engine overhaul(he says just the carbs and fuel pump hahahaha). But no rust apparently.

Help me make the right decision here! Don't wanna pass on a gem but also don't want to just buy a rare truck from the emotion of losing my last one to a dumb situation! haha.


User avatar
AZhitman
Administrator
Posts: 70425
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 72 240Z RB25, 63 Bluebird RHD, 63 NL320, 67 WRL411, 67 SPL311, 68 510 SR, 77 620 SR20, 89 Pao, 97 D21, 98 S14, 11 LS460L, 12 Titan 4x4.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Contact:

Re: 85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby AZhitman » Wed May 06, 2020 8:45 pm

Hey PK!

I think I've seen the listing for the one you speak of... Even as a rare rig, that's kinda high. I'd be skeptical of "no rust" (I've owned a LOT of Datsuns, and only one or to truly had "no rust" - and I'm in AZ> :)

Considering $1k to rebuild / re-seal the engine, another $1k in replacement and wear parts, bushings, alignment, fluids, cosmetics... and that's not even counting paint or interior work (or replacing an AC system).

If you can score it for $1k, it's probably worth restoring.

User avatar
pistolkeith
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2011 11:36 pm
Car: 1985 Nissan King Cab 720

Re: 85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby pistolkeith » Wed May 06, 2020 9:04 pm

AZhitman wrote:
Wed May 06, 2020 8:45 pm
Hey PK!

I think I've seen the listing for the one you speak of... Even as a rare rig, that's kinda high. I'd be skeptical of "no rust" (I've owned a LOT of Datsuns, and only one or to truly had "no rust" - and I'm in AZ> :)

Considering $1k to rebuild / re-seal the engine, another $1k in replacement and wear parts, bushings, alignment, fluids, cosmetics... and that's not even counting paint or interior work (or replacing an AC system).

If you can score it for $1k, it's probably worth restoring.
Absolutely. And im in a place where salt is very prevelant. The last(and only) 720 i had i got from California and it had been there all its life and even that had rust.

$1k would be an absolute joke to this guy sadly, so i may have to pass on it. Which is a shame. But perhaps just not meant to be! I appreciate your reply AZ!

User avatar
AZhitman
Administrator
Posts: 70425
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 72 240Z RB25, 63 Bluebird RHD, 63 NL320, 67 WRL411, 67 SPL311, 68 510 SR, 77 620 SR20, 89 Pao, 97 D21, 98 S14, 11 LS460L, 12 Titan 4x4.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Contact:

Re: 85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby AZhitman » Wed May 06, 2020 9:09 pm

He may sit on it for a while... I'd want to see lots of detailed pics first. That's full retail, a lot for a non runner. Keep us posted!

User avatar
pistolkeith
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2011 11:36 pm
Car: 1985 Nissan King Cab 720

Re: 85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby pistolkeith » Thu May 07, 2020 12:35 pm

OK! I have an UPDATE!

I went to see the truck today. Overall, it was largely in line with what my thoughts were from the small amount of info on the ad.

First off, i don't think this is actually a genuine Nissan/Datsun Bushmaster. It has a plaque riveted to the dash stating "Long Rider Special Edition". It does not have the badge for Matrix3 like the US conversions seem to have. I cannot seem to find any more information on this. But the conversion is also not a hack job. It has been well executed and looks professionally done(and done at the time of the purchase in 1986)

The truck is clean, straight and mostly complete. There are a few little bubbles under the paint, but largely it has a small amount of rust or corrosion. There is some rust(maybe surface?) in the floor pan in the drivers side that could be problematic, but thats all i was worried about.

A few things i noticed that i was surprised by: it has a sunroof!(scary thought considering leak potential). It is factory in this light Blue colour(haven't seen that colour before). It has definitely had a respray at some point but in a very similar blue tone only metallic. It has black and grey doorcards however, which i expected to be blue as i've seen in other older Datsuns.

To summarise:

183,281 km's
Sunroof
5speed manual
Power windows(surprising)
Replaced(?) bucket-style seats(in great shape as well as the rear bench)
Undercoated undercarriage at some point which has eliminated most of the rust
Missing the exhaust/muffler past the cab
Missing spare wheel
Grill is in the car(not installed)
Spare headlights/tail lights in the truck
Engine bay is dusty but pretty clean considering. Oil isn't murky or white. Clean semi-transparent black oil.
Turns over cleanly with no knocking or strange sounds
Overall, largely complete minus a few badge re-sticking jobs and installing the rear glass(door)

I also managed to (loosely) negotiate the price down from $2400 to $1500. So that makes me think if i show up with about $1200 cash that he'd take it. It will roll out of the storage space and onto a trailer. I just don't know if its going to be a real headache to either get parts for or to get up to drive-able spec.

Keen to hear all of your thoughts!

Heres some photos i took(super dark and cramped storage space)

https://imgur.com/a/QgozS1a for album of photos!

User avatar
pistolkeith
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2011 11:36 pm
Car: 1985 Nissan King Cab 720

Re: 85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby pistolkeith » Thu May 07, 2020 3:27 pm

I also just looked up VIN number info and heres what it says:

CarID 0
Brand NISSAN
ManufacturerId 558
Catalog NISSAN201809
Model KNLY720LTNFG70
Name DATSUN
ImageUrl
Date 01.08.1985
Actual
KolCount 0
KolComment
Date 08.1985
Trimcolor G - BLACK
Framecolor 078 - #505 BLACK/#006 SILVER METALLIC
Market Canada
BodyStyle KING CAB
Engine Z24
Grade ST
Transmission 5MT
Options Length:LONG; Drive:4WD

So it wasnt a Bushmaster it seems but instead and ST that was converted locally to be the same as a Bushmaster and was originally Silver. I wonder if this was just the Canadian response to the Matrix3 conversions into Bushmasters?

User avatar
AZhitman
Administrator
Posts: 70425
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 72 240Z RB25, 63 Bluebird RHD, 63 NL320, 67 WRL411, 67 SPL311, 68 510 SR, 77 620 SR20, 89 Pao, 97 D21, 98 S14, 11 LS460L, 12 Titan 4x4.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Contact:

Re: 85/86 720 Bushmaster 4X4

Postby AZhitman » Thu May 07, 2020 9:23 pm

Given what you learned today, I'd probably drop the $1200 and have a fun project... the rust is hard to gauge without tearing into it, but I'd point out the floor patches and the flaking of the under-bed area as concerns.

720 parts are readily available, so a bumper will be easily sourced.

There's a lot of work there, but it appears complete and uber-rare.


Return to “Datsun 720”