Sunday, February 22, 2015

"Mr. K" Katayama passed away

Yutaka Katayama

It is with regret that news about Yutaka "Mr. K" Katayama, known worldwide as the father of the Z-car, has passed away at the age of 105 due to his heart failure. It was confirmed by his son, Mitsuo.

"Mr. K" was born in 1909 in Shizuoka Prefecture and was hired by Nissan in 1935 as in charge of the PR management and later advertising. He was known to be the founding father of the Tokyo Auto Show when the first one, then-called the All-Japan Motor Show, started in 1954.

He was the one behind Nissan's US operations, established the Datsun brand in American soil, and the mastermind behind the iconic Datsun 240Z sports car (also known as the Fairlady Z S30). He was part of the Automotive Hall of Fame in both the US and Japan. Fairlady fans revered to "Mr. K" as a God and respected by many car enthusiasts.

Nissan once made a three-part documentary to celebrate Katayama-san's 105th birthday last year.

Despite his passing, his legacy lives on to the generation of Z cars past, present, and future.


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