Nissan has created a watch just for racing legend John Morton in honor of his SCCA championships behind the wheel of Datsun cars. The one-off timepiece incorporates not only design cues, but parts from the actual No. 46 BRE Datsun 510 that Mort0n drove to consecutive SCCA Trans-Am victories in 1971-72 until its class was canceled.
Made in conjunction with REC Watches of Denmark, the watch features the racing number, 46, in the original font in a roundel and Morton’s signature on the face. Red and blue nods to the twin BRE stripes at the 11 and 5 o’clock positions. The second hand is yellow, a reference to the 510’s Sperex VHT yellow exhaust pipes on the 510.
The watch’s caseback was created from parts of the 510’s original BRE chin spoiler, which was damaged and hung on the walls at Nissan USA’s Tennessee headquarters (the one on the actual car now is a replacement). The spoiler, of course, was an iconic piece of the 510, a clever invention by team owner Peter Brock because solid air dams were illegal at the time. By adding brake ducts the team was able to circumvent the rules and gain a slight edge in a championship where every advantage counted towards Morton’s by-the-nosehairs win.
“This watch is a small token of appreciation for a valued friend of Nissan and a timeless legend to race fans all over the world,” said Nissan’s Dave Bishop, senior manager for product development of Nissan USA’s aftersales division.
“To see this watch with my name on it is such an honor — I can’t adequately express how pleased I was to be presented this keepsake,” Morton responded.
It’s great to see Nissan honor one of their racing heroes, especially one as deserving and kind as Morton. Happy 510 Day, everyone!