At another time, the concept cars were the work of body builders, and non-automotive manufacturers. Opel was the first european brand to break ranks with the unveiling of a prototype in 1965, the Experimental GT presented at the Frankfurt motor Show. This concept then gave birth to the Opel GT, a sports car intended to be accessible to many, and whose appearance was reminiscent of the Chevrolet Corvette of the time.

The concept cars were taken from a capital importance for the German brand, with strong momentum from the GT, which has never left the minds of the designers of Opel. Upon our arrival in the studios of the PSA group, which owns Opel since 2017, to discover the latest creation of the manufacturer of the lightning (the famous “blitz”), a surprise was waiting for us. A Opel Manta A 1970 in perfect condition was exposed: “the brand still inspires many of its former models for the design of its existing vehicles.

Opel Manta A 1970 . Axel Wierdemann

It was a sporty version with a 4-cylinder engine of 1.9 liters of displacement, and that, as a sign of a different era, was not ashamed to proclaim loudly and his temperament, muscular, using bands of bright colours and badges “1900” (1900 cm3). A vision that Opel wants to be reborn, to some extent, on these models in the future. Install the steering wheel immediately gives a furious desire to go on an adventure on the secondary network French. The simplicity of the dashboard and the soft wonder of the seats give a real lesson to today’s cars.

the Two older concept cars are also invited to the feast. The first was the prototype CD of 1969, based on the luxurious Opel Diplomat. The glass is ubiquitous on the car, so as to make the interior very bright and the visibility perfect. A precept that concepts which are more recent have also not denied. In order to ensure its modernity and avant-gardism: if we impasse on the oversized tires and headlights retractable, the CD can almost pass for car néorétro current.

The prototype CD of 1969, based on the luxurious Opel Diplomat. Axel Wierdemann

inside, we notice the appearance of the “Pure Panel” which consists of grouping all the information relevant to the conduct on a compact panel, and thus enjoy an interior that is sleek. The version of 1969 and its many counters and gauges of needles spread out on the dashboard seem to be very far from what we can imagine for the future dashboard automobile even if the “Pure Panel” could resume service.

The second prototype we made a leap forward in time, since it is the GT Concept in 2016. This sports model, very compact, is made up of three color layers (black, red, and gray) and has the front tires in red, inspired by the Motorcycle Club from 1928 produced by Opel. We find the great transparent bubble, initiated by the CD, which extends from the windshield to the rear of the roof. It allows you to have a clear view on the road despite the low height of the roof of the coupe.

The GT Concept in 2016. Axel Wierdemann

The Concept GT takes to the precept of Colin Chapman “light is right”, too often ignored by the current sports. Everything has been implemented to reduce the mass of the spacecraft at the maximum, but also to reduce the cost. He embarked as a driver of large series, a 3-cylinder engine borrowed from the city Adam, that should have no trouble coping with the low weight of the car. An idea that is not without reminding us a certain Mazda MX-5.

slipping to the inside of the cockpit, one realizes that the cameras are replacing the good old rear view mirrors. Useless to try to adjust the seat: this is the steering wheel and the pedals that adjust to the way of the supercar LaFerrari. The ideal driving position, the small steering wheel and the dashboard is futuristic make you want to taste the steering of the vehicle.

The instrument panel is a keypad digital, but it is different from what one can find on cars today. In fact, the screen comes on push in the dash, forming two circles that represent the counters. The Sheer Panel has come down through the years, and was able to complete thanks to the arrival of the screens that allow you to collect as much data as necessary, in a virtual way. Opel felt that too much information was harmful to the concentration of the driver, the screen does not display any data to the outside of the counters. When the driver needs to know something (information, navigation, calendar), a window burst from the empty screen and displays the required item automatically.

The concept GTX XPRMNTL of 2018. Opel

If a lot of sports cars today have a refined interior with quality materials, the GT concept expresses a different vision. Without denying the comfort, the little coupe includes textiles used in many of the sports practices, in order to have an interior that is durable, lightweight and inexpensive. The leather of the seats is thus replaced by a fabric from the world of sports shoes, and the suede that covers usually the driving high-performance vehicles leaves room for the neoprene, a material used for diving suits.

Before moving on to the new concept car, the brand, to the lightning we had talked more about its strategy. The PSA group would leave a lot of leeway to its recent acquisition, but already owning three French brands, requires Opel to remain “German”. The labels germanic are known for their perceived quality and their reliability, much less to their imagination. Opel will continue to be a German brand which is general, but should offer products that are more fun to stand out from the austere production beyond the Rhine. In short, the “Deutsche Qualität” with a little more joy.

The concept GTX XPRMNTL is equipped with an engine 100 % electric. Opel

here We are finally in front of the concept GTX XPRMNTL (this last word does not belong to the vocabulary shadok, but it means “experimental”) , who announced the route that will borrow of Opel models from 2020. Among the elements that will be retained on the future range of the manufacturer, we find the famous Pure Panel, but also the front face “Vizor”, which represents the visor of a protective helmet. The concept is equipped with an engine 100 % electric. This is not the first attempt of the manufacturer in this field, as the Opel Ampera (sister-twin of the Chevrolet Volt in the US) was an electric vehicle with range extender to support. The smallest Chevrolet Bolt, known under the name of Ampera-e, will hardly be widespread in Europe.

The constructor said that he imagines the caes rolling electricity as a part of the future, and does not consider the automotive market with a single type of engine. The technology necessary for the realization of electric vehicles would represent 40% of the cost of production, which makes it difficult to offer them at an attractive price.

outside, three color layers are superimposed (dark blue, yellow, and white), as well as the concept GT. The GTX takes over the silhouette, which became a classic of the SUV. On the bottom of the desk, we find a witness of load of the vehicle, which allows the owner of the car to check the level of electricity stored by the battery without having to visit the dashboard.

The headlights Matrix Light can display the logo “GTX”, but also an animation of the games Snake and Pacman. Detail even more fun, the rims are inspired by the achievements of the brand BBS, which made the happiness of the drivers of the Golf GTI and BMW sports in the 1980s. At the center of the wheel, a screen displays a logo Opel, which does not rotate with the wheels, in the manner of Rolls-Royce. Opel, however, has held that this logo image is not completely fixed, because the imperfections would, according to the manufacturer, a certain charm to the car.

The seats are not attached to the floor, one has the impression that they float in the air. Opel

as In the concept GT, the materials used in the cabin are from the garment industry and shoes, and rear-view mirrors are replaced by cameras. The seats are not attached to the floor, one has the impression that they float in the air. Useless, here, too, seek to adjust the driver’s seat, since it adjusts alone according to the height of the eyes of the driver! The interior seems to be empty through the Pure Panel, which includes all the commands, and which is used via a small touch pad. The doors do not embody the same no speakers, as the latter embed themselves in the seats. So you have the option to equip the seats or not of this option, but also choose the number of seats that will benefit.

There is also a lack of vents in central, replaced by an opening under the windshield that brings the outside air in the interior, such as on old cars. It is possible to take a selfie via the dashboard and post it directly on social networks, and even print it. A function to say the least, unexpected on a car.

The last concept car of Opel knows how to show ingenuity in order to reduce its manufacturing costs while seeking to improve life on board. The brand also dares to retrieve items from the past for its cars of the future, a formula that has already proven itself with the wave of neo-retro. For the sensations of driving, we turn instead to the Concept of GT-2016, which is more topical than ever with its little engine and its light weight, which should reduce its C02 emissions, while providing a car with sufficient performance to be fun without being tempted to ride at speeds prohibited. After all, following the disappearance of the Peugeot RC Z, the range of the PSA is not in the lack of a sports coupe?

The GT Concept in 2016, alongside the Concept CD of 1969. Opel


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