Care for a German-built car named after a cartilaginous fish and sold through Buick dealerships … all for nine Benjamins and a carb tune? And no, we’re not talking about the a lederhosen-sporting GNX with sharkskin seats.
Despite never having the “pleasure” to learn how to curse in German while attempting to deal with the innumerable issues that these cars have (remember that Opel is Deutsche-market GM from the storied “Chevette era” of quality control), I do have a perverse fascination with them. The Bay Area is seemingly lousy with Opels of various sizes and shapes, probably due to the low salt exposure (Opels dissolve in salt water like sugar cubes) and large numbers of high-functioning nutcases. (Case in point, the Opel Blitz and Opel Manta I tracked down a while back for DOTSBE). If I had more money than sense, I’d probably have a yard full of rusty Kadetts that I’d occasionally water with a healthy dose of cold hard currency, hoping that they’d eventually sprout into vintage rally cars.
That being said, this Reno-based ’73 Manta is purportedly straight, rust-free, and has good compression. Plus it’s a four speed. Retard the timing or richen the mixture and you might just get this puppy home under its own power. The color is a lot better than the various shades of “crap brown” these cars usually came in, and it’s so cheap it’s essentially begging for a Manta 400 front end and some auxiliary lights. Wunderbar!
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