Manual gearbox? Check. JDM pedigree? Check. Drips coolness? Oh yeah.
Believe it or not, the second-generation Nissan Maxima has something in common with this 1984 Bluebird wagon. Both share a front-wheel-drive basic platform (codenamed U11), though the Bluebird was never sold in the US. Instead, it was a Japanese Domestic Model (JDM) only, but that's what makes it so insanely cool. This example is currently up for auction on Cars and Bids and it's literally a time capsule with just 32,400 miles on its odometer. Its red exterior and grey interior are in solid shape.
And yes, JDM means it's right-hand drive. We especially like those fender-mounted mirrors and even the vinyl-covered seats and hand-crank windows bring on additional charm. Modifications are minimal, which is good. They include 17-inch Enkei wheels, an aftermarket amp controller, some auxiliary switches, and tinted windows.
Under the hood lies a 1.6-liter inline-four with 80 horsepower and 91 lb-ft of torque and paired to a four-speed manual transmission. We know the output isn't exactly impressive; the '85 model year US-spec Maxima offered nearly twice the output with a 3.0-liter V6. This was also the last generation Maxima ever to be offered in a wagon body style, and the Bluebird wagon suffered the same fate as well.
When the U11 generation was retired in 1990, the wagon went with it. Only sedan and hatchback versions remained for several years. When the Bluebird ceased production entirely in 2001, just the sedan still existed. JDM enthusiasts need no introduction to the Bluebird.
The original was launched in 1957 and went on to become one of Nissan's most famous models. Like its longtime Toyota Corona rival, the Bluebird was regarded as being extremely reliable and well made. It's no wonder taxi companies embraced them for years. For the first part of its life, it was sold as a Datsun and didn't acquire the Nissan brand name until 1982. The Bluebird did finally reach the US, though it wasn't badged as the Maxima but rather as the Stanza, which became the Altima in 1992.
We don't expect this fully US-titled and legally imported Bluebird wagon to sell for serious money but it definitely has appeal for JDM and Nissan fans alike. The highest bid, as of this writing, is only $2,500 and bidding ends on August 23.