By on November 7, 2011

Reuters reports that GM Europe President Nick Reilly is retiring just as his successor predicts a slowdown the European auto market in the turmoil of the Euro crisis. Replacing Reilly is Opel’s CEO, Karl-Friedrich Stracke, who just last week told Automotive News [sub]

We expect that the automobile market in Europe will experience a painful cooling, and we expect a significant shrinking of the market.

And as if slow sales projections weren’t bad enough, Opel also faces a tough union boss in Klaus Franz, who is pushing for ever more production or not just Opels but Chevies as well, in the Euro zone according to AN [sub]. But despite the challenges facing Stracke, he’s still got a song in his heart… in the tune of GT. Though GM has no lightweight rear-drive platform to draw on, and in spite of all the gathering storm clouds, Stracke tells Auto Motor und Sport that

I can well imagine a car like the Manta, but with new technology and a new design. I could also very well imagine a proper Opel GT which recalls our classic model of 1968.

Ludicrous teasing? Possibly. An understandable escape from the depressing reality of mid-debt-crisis Europe? Definitely. I mean, what would you rather imagine, a cascading collapse of confidence in sovereign debt, or the scenario depicted above? Yeah, that’s what we thought…

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14 Comments on “New Opel Boss Cures Euro-Depression With Hints At “A Proper Opel GT”...”

  • avatar

    At first glance, I thought the guy on the left was using a walker.

    I’ve always loved that little car. That is what the Sky/Solstice should have been.

  • avatar

    The Saturn Sky was sold as the Opel GT in Europe. No Vauxhall version, due to being LHD only. It replaced the Lotus Elise-based Opel/Vauxhall Speedster.

    My Lord look at the cut line on that hood… Ah, the ’70s.

  • avatar

    Given how hopelessly rust-prone these Opel GTs were, I wouldn’t park it any closer then a block from the nearest swimming pool.

  • avatar
    Joe McKinney

    During the mid-1980’s one of my sisters owned an Opel GT for a while. There are three things I remember about this car. It was nowhere near as fast as it looked. The interior was very tight. And, the concealed headlights were opened a closed manually using a lever mounted on the console between the seats.

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    Forget whether it’s a “proper car” or not, it’s certainly a proper car ad.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    Dreadfull panel fit but cool car. Early 70’s I had a grade school teacher with a orange one. Both the teacher and car would have fit well in that ad.

    • 0 avatar

      My sister’s fiancee had an orange GT. He was too tall, and I was too tall and wide to comfortably fit in it. The CB under the dash didn’t help much, I kept whacking my left knee on it. It did rust amazingly fast. It was a trouble free little car for the 5 years or so he had it. By that time, there was so much rust it had to go. My sister got rid of him after he took almost $10K out of their joint account (That was supposed to be going for the down payment on a house after they were married) and bet it on a horse, and lost. And I thought she got angry at me, she was way more PO’ed at him than she ever was at me.

      Guess where he’s living now, with his third wife? Las Vegas! Perfect for someone with a major gambling problem.

  • avatar

    Ah, yes, the Opel GT. I always liked these; a “poor man’s Corvette” if you will. I’m not exactly poor, but sign me up!

    There’s one of these owned by someone who works at our local Wally-World and considering its age, isn’t in too bad of shape. It runs.

  • avatar
    slow kills

    Hot looks, tight cabin with decent gauges, light as hell and rear wheel drive with a stick shift at a low price point and I’m there. I don’t even mind if the engine is faithfully anemic. I’m not really using my trunk anyway, but a glove box door would be a nice addition.

    • 0 avatar
      slow kills

      Oh yeah, I’ll probably take their Manta homage first, as I really would prefer something that plays down the sportiness. Again, lightweight with a stick shift. No heavy beasts like the Hyundai Genesis coupe!

  • avatar

    Ed, you have the most amazing library of car ads, or you’ve got some seriously mad Google skills. Nothing says ’70’s like a pair of plaid Speedos.

  • avatar

    The new Opal GT: what women who want to pick up guys drive.

    Hey, it could be marketed in the way opposite to the original ad. Times have changed.

  • avatar

    I’ve still got one of these. Had it since 1971. Im about to dump 40 – 50 grand in one to do a resto-mod. It will be modern and fast as crap.

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