Opel cars were first made in Germany by Adam Opel GmbH, a German automobile company founded by Adam Opel in 1863. It became a subsidiary of General Motors (USA) in 1929 with GM holding an 80 per cent interest. General Motors was very impressed by Opel’s modern production facilities and in 1931 GM increased its ownership to 100 per cent. In 1935, Opel became the first German manufacturer to produce over 100,000 vehicles in a year. This was based on the popular Opel P4 model. Opel also produced he first… Read more


2012 Opel Insignia

The German made Opel Insignia is sold as a medium-large sedan and a station wagon. Though it was launched in Europe in 2009 it didn’t reach Australia until September 2012. Insignia turned out to be a failed marketing experiment in this country. The idea was to promote it as an upmarket European import, rather than just another Holden. But Holden got greedy and added several thousand dollars to the prices of the Opel range. Buyers didn’t accept this and the Opel experiment lasted less than a year. Many who did… Read more

HOLDEN / OPEL ASTRA 2004 – 2017

2004 Holden Astra CD

From 1996 the Astra was imported from the Opel in Europe but rebadged as a Holden. Holden Astra was sold as the AH Series from November 2004 until 2009. However, Holden chose to sell low-cost models of the otherwise-superseded TS series when the AH series was introduced. These had the title of Astra Classic. A major makeover of the AH in March 2007 saw a facelift and improved engine performance. Then came the start of some marketing mistakes. The Astra AH models discontinued in 2010 to be replaced by cheaper… Read more


Opel Insignia

Australian engineers working on the next-generation Commodore may have played a major part in having the Opel Insignia listed as a finalist for the 2018 World Car of the Year awards. Opel Insignia has had many positive reviews in Europe since its introduction a few months ago – and that’s with just the four-cylinder turbocharged engine. We feel sure they will love the performance of the V6 engine if they get to sample it. That powerplant wouldn’t have been engineered into the car but for pressure from Holden. The World… Read more

OPEL INSIGNIA 2012 – 2013

2013 Opel Insignia OPC

Opel Insignia was launched in Europe in 2009, and took out the European Car of the Year award. It didn’t reach Australia until September 2012 in what turned out to be a failed marketing experiment. The idea was to promote Insignia as a semi-upmarket European import, which it was and separate it from the GM-Holden brand. Apparently a sensible move, but Holden got greedy and added several thousand dollars to the prices of the Opel range (which also included the smaller Astra and Corsa models). Buyers stayed away in droves… Read more


Star performer: Opel Astra OPC states its sporty intention from the out

The Astra was a star in the House of Holden for years, starting in 1984 with the Australian-made five-door model also sold, with some changes, as the Nissan Pulsar. In 1996 this first Astra was replaced by an Opel-based model from the German division of General Motors that, as the Holden Astra sold here in large numbers until it was replaced in 2009 by the Daewoo-based but later locally-built Holden Cruze. Now the German automobile maker is running its own race in the Australian market. Opel has reclaimed the name,… Read more


Bold lines of the new Opel Mokka will be a strong selling feature

Only a few months after going on sale in Europe, Opel has announced that its Mokka compact SUV is on its way to Australia. The Mokka will hit showrooms here, “in the third quarter of this year”, the German company won’t be more specific about timing at this stage. Opel Australia’s managing director, Bill Mott said the Mokka will be very welcome downunder. “We are very excited to bring the Mokka to Australia. This car has already had in excess of 100,000 orders in Europe since launch, and with the… Read more


Opel Insignia OPC looks purposeful but the styling isn’t overly aggressive

Opel, the German arm of General Motors, produces a range of high-performance models stamped with the OPC suffix – for Opel Performance Center. So far, two of the sporty cars have come our way – the Corsa OPC and Insignia OPC, with the Astra OPC slated for release within weeks. Since opening its doors in 1997, Opel Performance Center has increasingly used Nurburgring as a proving ground and in 2006 the Russelsheim automaker signed a partner contract with the legendary 20.8 kilometre Nordschleife race track and opened its own test… Read more