Sunday, February 22, 2009

1970 Opel Kadette Wagon on eBay

Here's a chance for me to re-live a portion of my teenage years. At least an automotive portion of my teenage years. I mentioned in an earlier post that my very first car was an Opel station wagon. One just like it, only in green where mine was red, is now available on eBay.

If you've been following this blog for awhile you know that I like Opels. I've always believed that GM made a huge mistake in discontinuing the line in the US in 1975. Had they not, they might now have a line of cars that truly completes with BMW and Audi (Don't laugh... Remember back in 1970 BMW was selling the mundane 1600 and Audi was offering the unreliable Super 90. While the Kadette, sold as an economy car in the US, couldn't compete with those cars, the Opel 1900 and Manta - cars that Opel introduced a couple of years later - certainly could). At the very least they'd have something that would be challenging VW. Whatever, it's water under the bridge and GM is now staring in the face of bankruptcy. I'm pretty certain that keeping the Opel brand active in the United States would not have prevented all of GMs current problems, but it may have helped. Who knows? But I digress...

The seller of this 1970 Opel wagon describes it as being in "ridiculous stupid immaculate condition". That may be a bit of an exaggeration, but it appears to be in very good condition. It's the nicest one I've seen in a very long while.

The seller gives few details about the car other than it was once owned by Opels Unlimited and that it has just over 62,000 miles on it. Opels came with a choice of two engines, a 1.1 liter and a 1.9 liter. I'm not sure which one this has. Both engines were reliable, but, obviously, especially with an automatic transmission, a 1.9 is preferred. (If you buy this and it's a 1.9 throw out the original carb and put on a Weber. It will save you a lot of headaches in the future) The seller leaves a phone number to call for further information.

Mechanical parts are still relatively easy to source as many of the parts are shared with the Opel GT (which has a very good following in the US), but body panels are getting scarce. Fortunately, this car seems to be straight and rust free.

In 1969 and 1970 Opel was selling more cars in the US than any other import brand except Volkswagen, but there are very few Opels left. Still, this car will never be a collector's item or worth any real money. Buy it to drive it and bring it to an occasional car show.

An Opel wagon is certainly not the fastest or best looking car you could buy, but it's a piece of automotive history from back when GM seemed to actually have a clue as to what the American car buying public really wanted.

Click here to see the eBay listing for this 1970 Opel Kadette wagon.

Click here to see the website of the Opel Motorsports Club, which is probably worthwhile joining if you buy this or any Opel.

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