At least in the U.S., Opel is one of those names that never quite caught on. Perhaps that had something to do with the odd marketing and strange cross-branding GM has always undertaken. Opels have on again/off again been available as their own brand, then later as Saturn models and most recently Buicks. But let’s not forget that it’s Opel underpinnings that are at the heart of some SAAB models after their takeover by the General, too. Of course, the larger problem in the success of Opels – and indeed, many GM models – has been internal competition. At the same time that the Opel 1900 was launched, for example, GM also concurrently launched the similar but completely different Chevrolet Vega. And outside of the Cosworth model that upped the fun quotient of the Vega substantially, the model was pretty much completely crap. It was too small, unreliable and well, unsafe to really be a market hit. Which is why it’s particularly vexing that GM spent so much time trying to sell them when they had a perfectly good small car in the Opel Ascona. It was marketed here as both the 1900 sedan and the slinkier Manta coupe, and was also available as a 2-door wagon. Was it class leading? No. But it was a reasonable option that pretty well proven and if properly supported from GM probably wouldn’t have been so rare to see today:
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Looking for a different, yet practical, daily driver? One that will get you a few looks at the local weekend car show, but also return…1 Comment