“The Datsun Type 17 was a small vehicle produced in Japan in the 1930s. It was the last in a line of Datsun small cars (Types 14 thru 17) produced before Nissan’s resources were diverted to manufacturing military materials for the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Pacific War.
“It was almost identical in appearance to but in reality much more austere than the preceding Datsun 16, with less chrome and a more spartan interior. The Type 17 was further distinguished by a wide vertical bar in middle of the front grille. Mechanically, it was identical to the preceding Datsun 16. A 722cc 4-cylinder 16hp Datsun Type 7 engine drove the rear wheels through a 3-speed gearbox to give the vehicle a top speed of 80 km/h (50 mph).
“The Type 17T was the truck model produced from April 1938 to January 1944. It played an important domestic role in small-lot transportation by self-owned shops and department stores in Japan while also being pressed into service for use by the Japanese armed forces in the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945) and the Pacific War (1941-1945).
“Factory production was allowed to resume in 1949 during the Occupation with a different grille installed as the Datsun 3135 and, with an almost identical grille as the pre-war Datsun 17, as the Datsun 4146 in 1950.”