Datsun cars dating back to the mid 1970s still appear on the streets of Mexican towns and cities. All types of dilapidated cars are an indicator of poverty in 3rd world countries. Arriving in a near empty bus station in the early hours and waiting for a connecting bus I decided to get my boots polished. I explained to the boot shiner that I had just been visiting the USA. “The thing I don’t get about the USA is they want everything to be new,” he told me. “They buy a car and then two years later they get rid of it when there is nothing wrong with it. They never make things last. Whereas in México, we repair things and repair it again, and why not?” I felt this attitude to be a factor contributing to the continued existence of the Datsun in México and the challenge to maintain the life of products a necessity when a replacement was unaffordable. Such maintenance work generates its own micro economy in communities. This prolonging the life of products would be counter-intuitive to a marketer. Datsun remains work in progress.
Work in progress