The Opel GT is a two -seat coupe model, which until the middle of 1973 established the Adam Opel AG from October 1968 in 103 463 copies. The body was designed by Erhard Schnell, who worked as a designer at Opel 1952-1992.
The development of the Opel GT began in the winter of 1963 with the production of design studies of plasticine and at the IAA 1965, a prototype under the name Opel GT Experimental shown. The car should serve primarily as an image - bearer of the General Motors ( GM) group. The possible introduction of a GT sports car of Opel then sparked as much astonishment as enthusiasm. For a sports car did not match the previously staid brand image of the Rüsselsheim automaker. About the practical realization of Opel was long but announced nothing.
A characteristic feature of the model were the so-called Coke -bottle shape or removed reminiscent of a Coca -Cola bottle and fender turns the pop-up headlights, which were filmed in parallel via a lever in the interior to the longitudinal axis of the hood. This type of designated soon as " sleep eyes " headlights was patented by Opel.
At the opening of the test and development center in Dudenhofen an Opel GT was released for a test drive before the eyes of the auto press. Thereafter, the technique of the vehicle is set. She came from a big series: floor pan, chassis and the 1.1 -liter engine were taken from the Kadett B; the 1.9-liter CIH engine came from the Opel Rekord C. The latter was only fitting with a protuberance of the bonnet in the car. Because of the limited space had to be chamfered at this engine, the cylinder head cover in the front area.
The management of Opel was, however, faced with the problem that no had spare capacity for the new vehicle. A small series of 30,000 units per year, representing about one -tenth of the Kadett production, could not slide easily into one of the existing works. Therefore, the body of Chausson in Gennevilliers (France) was made while Brissonneau & Lotz in Creil (France) completed paint and interior. The finished bodies were delivered to the Opel plant in Bochum, where they received the engine, transmission and axles. For some stir was caused by the targeted price of only DM 10,000, which was previously known by conscious indiscretion. At least now the new Opel GT was also perceived in the United States.
The Opel GT was initially built in the variants Opel GT Opel GT 1100 and 1900. The 1100 cc engine of the GT in 1100 developed just under 60 hp ( 44 kW ) while the GT 1900 90 HP (66 kW) mobilized and reaches a top speed of 185 km / hr. When GT 1100 there were only 155 km / h The relatively unpopular GT 1100 was set in 1970. Instead, followed by the Opel GT / J, which did without Cordsitze, vent windows, additional instruments and chrome parts and could be offered so much cheaper. The J stands for Junior, he had less displays in the cockpit. The correct designation for the 1900- cc version was Opel GT AL, where the A - according to the usual nomenclature Opel - stands for the first series and the L for luxury.
More than half of the total production was shipped to the U.S., where GM subsidiary Buick took over the marketing while maintaining the brand name Opel. After Opel had previously remained unhappy with the sale of the highly successful European sedans in the U.S., the GT was there very soon accepted as a true sports car and had a rapidly growing fan base. There, the Opel GT was considered a small Corvette ( "Baby Corvette "), which had been designed by the same design team. In 1973, the production of the Opel GT was discontinued. The reasons for this are manifold: on the one after buying the automotive division of Brissonneau & Lotz by Société des Usines Chausson, which worked closely with Renault, the supply for the OPEL GT bodies had been terminated because of competition for Renault Alpine A110, for other occurred in the United States new safety regulations in force, impose, inter alia, the special bumpers that would be difficult with the shape of GT in line can bring. It is always a matter of discussion among GT- lovers, whether GM production in spite of its great success resulted not because the Opel GT made the originating also from the house of GM Corvette market share in the U.S. in dispute. It is clear that the GT in GM 's home market was very popular; but actual cannibalization effects can be questioned since the Corvette was much more powerful and more expensive.
A constantly debated convertible or a Targa model of the Opel GT was not in series. Also it did not come to produce a direct successor model, the " Opel GT 2" and " Opel GT 2 2".
Due to the vintage - regulation in Germany the Opel GT has applied since 1998 as a historic vehicle and must - with a report on the contemporary original condition - be driven with an H-plate. That the Opel GT has a large Baunähe to other Opel models, facilitates modification, for which 2.2 -liter or 2.4 -liter engine from the Opel Rekord or Omega, injection engines from Manta or Ascona and 5 -speed transmission of various Opel types are suitable.
In Germany there are many GT- clubs. For the most part, these are members of the umbrella organization of the European Opel GT clubs (see links). Traditionally, once a year, the Opel GT friends meet for euro meeting at Pentecost. The venues will be awarded by the Federation to petition members.
The advertising campaign for the Opel GT brought the slogan " Only flying is better " out.
The Opel GT completed before its launch one, then not self-evident, Crash Test. What was certainly not self-evident - - largely undeformed At an impact speed of 50 km / h, the passenger compartment remained.
The first delivered Opel GT had no ABE and were approved by TÜV individually.
In 2003, 30 years after production of the first GT, Opel announced to revive the name.
The successor of the mid-2005 expired Opel Speedster was sold by the spring of 2007 to the summer of 2009 as the Opel GT. However, unlike its namesake this is not a coupe, but, like its immediate predecessor, a two-seat roadster. Was built, the new GT in the U.S., together with the almost identical Saturn Sky and the Pontiac Solstice rounded designed.