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The Opel Speedster, the sport that spoke English

Raise your hand if you remember the Speedster. It was the sports spider that Opel presented as a prototype at Geneva in 1999, just 21 years ago. 2 buckets sea

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The Opel Speedster, the sport that spoke English
Raise your hand if you remember the Speedster. It was the sports spider that Opel presented as a prototype at Geneva in 1999, just 21 years ago.

2 buckets seats developed by the Center for International Research Technical Opel Rüsselsheim in collaboration with Lotus Engineering in Norfolk, with an aluminum chassis and a bodywork made in composite materials.

The motor, which is fixed in position rear-central, was the new 4-cylinder ECOTEC that the German House produced in the factory of Kaiserlautern, Germany, in displacements from 1800 to 2200 cc for different models of the range Opel. The version of the 2.2-liter fitted to the Speedster, this lightweight engine with 4 valves per cylinder, direct injection, developed 147 HP (108 kW) and it allowed this car to not even 800 kg and reach a speed close to 220 km/h and 100 km/h from a standing start in less than 6 seconds.

In practice, the Opel Speedster (Vauxhall VX220 in the uk market) was built on the platform of the second generation of the spider Lotus Elise that differed from the previous series for that frame, slightly modified, and the electronic control unit developed by Lotus. The decision to collaborate with the English builder dates back to when the Opel was preparing the celebration of its hundred years of activity as a manufacturer of automobiles, and was based mainly on the fact that the concept behind the Elise was very aligned with the objectives of the German House, and because, by doing so, it would have been possible to put in a short time on the market a two-seater car.

The Speedster would have been assembled in the factory Lotus of Hethel, about 150 kilometres north-east of London, where the famous british manufacturer of sports cars, had by 1967 its manufacturing base. The quality control was entrusted to a group of technical Opel is responsible for verifying that during the production process were to follow the directives and procedures of the German House.

Before it is released for sale to the public, each Speedster was also subjected to a cycle test default along a test track adjacent to the factory. Ten years of warranty against the rust would show as the Opel did rely on the quality of the new sports two-seater.

In 2004, the performance of the Speedster made a considerable leap forward with the adoption of the engine 2.0 ECOTEC Turbo with 200 HP (147 kW) of the Astra 5-door and Station Wagon, which resulted in an increase in deo 36% power. Thanks also to a the weight in just 930 kg, the Speedster Turbo was able to acceIerare from 0 to 100 in just 4.9 seconds and to exceed 240 km/h and was perfectly comfortable on the most challenging roads where he could take full advantage of its great handling.

After nearly 8,000 units built, the Speedster went out of production. It was the spring of 2006, and many fans of engines greeted each other with respect, and also with some tears.

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