Opel Kadett

30 Jun 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Opel Kadett
Opel Kadett

Opel Kadett

Published on Thursday, 10 February 2011 20:18

What’s orange and will make your mouth water? Ian Seabrook discovers the answer in the form of a rare German saloon

General Motors was lagging behind the rest of Europe. Perhaps wary of the dangers of merging after the rather laughable attempts to do so by BMC, GM was left reeling as the other American giant Ford demonstrated how it should be done.

1965’s Transit van was the first joint operation between the German and British Ford forces, closely followed by the Escort and Capri. Meanwhile, Opel and Vauxhall still enjoyed complete design freedom from one another with both brands being sold through the same showrooms.

British loyalty meant that Opel sales in the UK remained very low. In fact, they didn’t even start until 1967, by which time the Kadett was in ‘B’ form. This was the second upgrade of a whole new generation of Kadett launched in 1965.

The name itself was in use by Opel as early as 1936.

Proving that some discussion was going on between Opel and Vauxhall, the Kadett of 1965 had leaf rear springs and a 1078cc engine (1196cc optional) to the Viva HA’s 1057. The Viva got coil springs at the back first, with the HB of 1966. The Kadett was reworked into Kadett B form in 1967, picking up coils. Both cars were seen as competent if a little unremarkable back in the Sixties but one delightful spin-off of the Kadett was the beautiful GT.

Launched in 1968, this mini-Corvette was anything but unremarkable.

The GT primarily used an 1897cc Rekord engine and again apeing the work at Vauxhall, it also found itself under the bonnet of the Kadett Rallye while the Viva got 1975cc Victor power.

Opel Kadett

The Kadett B was phased out in 1973, effectively replaced by a new Kadett – the structure of which is familiar to us as the Viva-powered Chevette – the first serious joint operation between Vauxhall and Opel, yet still a bit of a muddled one.

If you’ve kept up with all of that, you’ll see that the bright Orange Kadett featured here is a late Kadett B, dating from 1973 – the last year of production. These cars rarely come to market, so classic car enthusiast Michael Carpenter leapt at the chance when this one came to the market in August 2010, replacing his BMW 1602 with something far rarer!


You’ll pick up a cooking 635CSi for as little as £1000 if it needs work, but the M Power version will always command more after all, the engine alone is worth that much to someone who needs a replacement for their M5. Expect to pay £2000 for a rotten example needs a replacement for their M5.

1973 OPEL KADETT 1200

Opel Kadett
Opel Kadett
Opel Kadett
Opel Kadett
Opel Kadett
Opel Kadett

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