Opels are alive and well. Check out http://www.opelgt.com, lots of cool photos!
Just a correction. The Opel GT was priced three to four hundred more than the Manta Luxus. (I'm not really that bad in math). The standard Manta model was priced much less.
(Approximately $3,300) So it was quite a step-up in price to both the Luxus ($3,700 -3,8000) and the GT (over $4,000)
Well perhaps the ones you owned were the rare cases.
I know the one I owned (which was well maintained and in fact babied) was one heck of a lemon.
It really is too bad, because the styling and design of the car was wonderful.
You say that all of your Opels had over 100,000 miles on them. Perhaps the previous owners had all of the problems before you purchased them and replaced the Opel parts with aftermarket parts. I wouldn't brag about your car's reliability, because it's an Opel, and sooner or later...
Well unfortunately you'll probably find out the hard way.
To the last comment: you're about 30 years too late, the reviewer states he traded the Opel in on a Chevy in 1974.
Feb 5, 2005
We are the original owners of a 1973 Opel Manta 1900, RED, automatic.
It has 140000 miles and has recently been restored after sitting outside for 7 years. The engine compression is good and I have had the car painted, rebuilt the front seats with the original Mercedes Benz type center pattern, new tires, water pump, carb. kit and other odds and ends. The car runs great and I have already had two offers. My kids love to drive it around the neighborhood and it still holds a good 70 mph. on the freeway. Well, so much for an oldie, but a goodie!!
To the writer of the last comment and to the person who currently owns a Blue Max. I would love to read full reviews on your vehicles.
I bought a signal green manta brand new in 1974. It is a four speed. It was driven very hard for many years, but never let me down. Through the years, I replaced the alternator. starter, rear end and finally the motor after it reached about 190,000 miles. The Opel became a community car, in that different families would borrow it to go places, and they always commented on how well it drove and handled. I have now restored it after allowing it to sit and rest for about 10 years. It is almost a legend in these parts because its been around for so long.
So, I am the proud owner of a reliable, well built and fun to drive OPEL, that have owned it for 31 years.
The real reason that GM stopped selling Opel in the North Anerican market was that it had become too expensive for the market segment it was aimed at, for reasons of increased labor costs for cars manufactured in Germany and, possibly, the exchange rate.
That's why they tried to keep the Opel program going by putting the nameplate on a cheaper Isuzu model for a few years. They would not have done that if they were trying to improve the sales of the Vega/Astre, which by 1975 were about to be replaced by the Chevette/T1000 anyway.
I owned 5 Opel Manta's, I now have only 2, although all after 1985, and I've traveled miles and miles, never left me on the road. Its true it has a rust problem, but its mostly in the same places... the battery box, rear wheel arches, chassis rails and the panel under the rear bumper go first, but what other 35year old car wouldn't rust out by now? I have no complaints whatsoever about the engine or mechanicals, they all work perfectly from day one.
German built Mantas were slightly better made than Belgian Mantas, but you only got the German built ones in USA, and no B-series (lucky you, they sucked)
In 1983 I purchased a 1973 Opel Manta, the one with the sunroof, automatic etc, great wheels and all for $100.00 from my English teacher. It was running on two cylinders, maybe three. I used it as my shop project for the year. Rebuilt the the whole thing, engine, harness etc. I abused it for a year and a half until it finally died. I wish I still had one and would like to find one. My next car was a real lemon, a 197? Audi Fox. The thing would never start in the winter.
Wow... some deja vu here.
I had a 1971 Opel Manta (although it was marketed as an Opel 1900 at the time).
It was like having a tempestuous affair... I loved and hated her at the same time.
I loved the precise handling. I loved the turbine-line whine of her engine. I loved the look of her (well, the front and back, anyway. I loved her Teutonically exclusivity. And when she ran, she ran beautifully.
But she seldom ran well. Although she never left me stranded, I went through two flywheels and two starters, three Solex 2BBL carburetors, three head gaskets, and one radiator and water pump... all in about 80,000 miles. She would go out of tune almost as often as the the oil needed to be changed. Whoever decided to put the battery on the other side of the firewall and above the fusebox should have been summarily executed. Come to think of it, the body was pretty doggone fragile, too.
But even with all of those flaws, I still loved her. And would have happily thrown my surfboard into a deep blue 4 speed Ascona Station wagon (my dream car at the time) and ridden off into the sunset, if I had the cash to swing it.
Ahhh... young, foolish love.
Oh, and that reminds me ... I loved the reclining seats, too.
I am buying 2 Opel Manta's both Luxus. One sounds like the Blue Max I have heard people posting about here due to it being blue and with the sunroof. They are in good condition with very little rust. The other Manta Luxus is a hardtop. Both are 1973 and I am getting them for 40.00 each. The guy told me that they did run when he first got them and they just sat in his backyard for about 10 years. The hardtop one needs a new tranny and the Blue Max need a new radiator and some roller thing that goes near the tranny I think. I want to restore both of them and wanted to know if there are any good websites to get parts for these?
My first car was a 1974 Opel Manta Rally, I was 17 at the time, 1977.
I loved my car. I changed out the carb., put headers and a free flow exhaust system on, replaced the sway bars and put Bilstein shocks all around. I upgraded the stereo, installed a front air dam and installed a 3 piece moulded in spoiler, and added custom alloy wheels that widened the stance two inches. The car was custom painted yellow and black, nicknamed "bumble bee".
The car never gave me any huge issues, I drove it for 5 years then sold to a friend who drove it another 3 who inturn sold it to another friend who got many more years of use. I believe it finally died doing over 115 miles an hour down a mountain in Colorado.
I was approached one time in 79' by a guy who offered me $3500 on the spot for the car.