Your Cars: Opel Kadetts Are Cool, Right?

Of course they’re cool. Sure, they look a little frumpy (said with love) but they have rally cred. Alex and Duder have taken three Kadetts under their wings. Follow their adventures on our forum.

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David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/10/19 8:20 p.m.

What, no comments? (Free bump for me. smiley)

mad_machine
mad_machine MegaDork
12/10/19 8:26 p.m.

When we lived in Spain in the late sixties and early seventies, my Father purchased a 1968 Opel Kadett Rallye. Yes, THAT Rallye. The homogulation special. He imported it to the US when his time in spain was up and continued to drive it till 1980 when family needs forced a sale for a more practical station wagon. As far as I know it either went to upstate NY or Canada. We never did find out what happened to it and he was visibly upset when he learned a few years ago exactly how rare that car was.

 

It was a fun car, he raced it locally at the "Atlantic City Speedway" in Pleasantville NJ until his hips went out in the Mid-Seventies. Everyone thought it was a standard Opel until he started passing people in the class above him

outasite
outasite HalfDork
12/10/19 8:46 p.m.

I bought a 68 Kadett Rallye in the mid 70s. I lived in Hamilton NJ then. I also had a Kadett L at the same time. I sold both to the same buyer.

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 MegaDork
12/10/19 8:48 p.m.

Are there any left?  I knew where there was one over twenty years ago, but lets face it, that's not exactly yesterday.  I haven't seen one in decades.

_
_ Dork
12/11/19 12:50 p.m.

This is just in time for the MCM video. Marty bought a Holden Gemini (aka- kadett). Check out the video. Cool little cars. In Marty's case, I think I would put a carbed miata engine in. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/11/19 1:01 p.m.

Okay, so this is weird: While growing up, friends of my parents--friends who happened to live in New Jersey--had an orange Kadett Rallye. 

slefain
slefain PowerDork
12/11/19 4:06 p.m.

OldOpelGuy was unloading a running, driving Kadett years ago for stupid cheap and I passed on it. Still kicking myself.

outasite
outasite HalfDork
12/11/19 4:22 p.m.

In reply to David S. Wallens :

My Kadett Rallye was yellow. 

McGuire Air Force Base and Fort Dix are located in New Jersey and many GIs brought cars back with them after being deployed in Europe. I sold a 68 SS Camaro to an army GI that was going to Germany and his plan was to sell it.

mad_machine
mad_machine MegaDork
12/11/19 5:20 p.m.

In reply to David S. Wallens :

My Father's was Red with the required Black hood and spots on the bumper. 

stuart in mn
stuart in mn MegaDork
12/11/19 5:30 p.m.

Back in the middle 1980s I had a 1967 Kadette wagon with the 1.1 liter engine that I used for a winter beater.  Slowest (and rustiest) car I ever owned, but it started every day no matter how cold it was outside and it never got stuck in the snow.  smiley

L5wolvesf
L5wolvesf Reader
12/11/19 6:08 p.m.

In high school, 1973 grad, my buddy Jake had a white Kadette Wagon. I don't recall how it ran but it got him to school for a while - then not or not well. So it took up occasional residence in our Auto Shop class. Then he decided to attempt auto body work on one of the doors. There was a Picasso like sculpture made of bondo on it at one point. Then came a trip to the desert with some of the shop guys. There were weapons including a shot gun. There may have been alcohol too. It was definitively established that bondo can in fact be removed with a shot gun. 

outasite
outasite HalfDork
12/11/19 8:26 p.m.

Does anyone remember the Opel Kadette station wagon review in Car and Driver?

stuart in mn
stuart in mn MegaDork
12/11/19 9:01 p.m.
outasite said:

Does anyone remember the Opel Kadette station wagon review in Car and Driver?

Yes, I have a copy of it somewhere.  I don't recall the exact language, but they basically decided it was the worst car of all time.

_
_ Dork
12/11/19 9:08 p.m.

In reply to stuart in mn :

That's a car worth owning. 

Duder
Duder Reader
12/16/19 4:41 p.m.
outasite said:

Does anyone remember the Opel Kadette station wagon review in Car and Driver?

I've read it - came across it (and articles about it) online when researching our Kadetts in my thread linked above by David.

The C&D "review" was notoriously a hit piece - they didn't find any terrible fatal flaws or explicitly point out something that made it worse than its contemporaries - more like they used the Kadett as a scapegoat to comment on the general state of imports & economy cars at the time.

The Kadett is never going to be seen as an all-time great; it's equally as terrible as any other 1960s car but can be equivalently tuned and raced - similar to how you can hop up a Cortina, 510, or 2002 - as we are finding out!

MotorsportsGordon
MotorsportsGordon HalfDork
12/17/19 12:21 p.m.

Oliver!

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