Saturday, February 6, 2016

Forgotten Classic: 1974 Opel Manta A

The first generation Opel Manta "A" was a simple and light two-door fastback that shared a chassis and oily bits with the Opel Ascona sedan platform. It is a classic that, for whatever reason, doesn't get many accolades these days, but would make a great occasional driver and weekend cruiser to fill the empty spot in your garage.  Find this 1974 Opel Manta A offered for $8,500 in Pescadero, CA via craigslist.  Tip from Kaibeezy.

The Manta A for the US market was equipped with the 1.9 liter Opel Cam-in-head engine, which was the optional upgrade engine in the little Opel GT and produced 105 horsepower and 112 ft-lbs of torque.  With only 2200 lbs to toss around (can that be seems low...), the Manta should be fun.

The Steering wheel makes this one a base model, not a Rallye (so there is probably not a tach). The wheel covers and beauty rings are also base model.  The bumpers are not the swim-deck style bumpers that DT's resident Manta-savant Hunsbloger thought started in '74, so he supposes that this car could have started out in Canada and work its way down the coast. 

Quick, someone buy this car before it suffers the same fate as that RX-7.  See another Manta for cheap?


  1. These were sought after race cars for the SCCA showroom stock series with a $5000 budget. They were known for superior handling for the day. If closer I would probably own it already. Price is pretty right. EZ ticket to the next car show without spending 50k.

  2. OoOooh, yummy.

    Listing says $6500.

    US '74s had the fat square-section bumpers, so this is either (a) retrofitted (b) non-US car or (c) earlier.

  3. careful...I think it's a matchbox. The bricks in the wall behind are 3" x 6".

  4. [img][/img]

  5. Two Opels in one day! Wow! Always liked their looks and available at your father's Buick dealer.

  6. I recall these cars winning many head-to-head magazine comparison tests back in the day(back when car magazines were worth waiting for).

    These are infinitely better cars than the GT, and the sedans and wagons of this era were cool as well.

    This seems strong money,but the "hell, when was the last time I saw one of those, they must be rare and therefore valuable, I need to buy it" dynamic kicks in.

    Then prices of otherwise forgotten, mediocre cars get a little wisp of a cache as seen through the nostalgic lens of wishful thinking.

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