Opel Kapitän P2 (1960) from Michael Clark Rockefellers’ cars collection

Opel Kapitan (1960). In 1961, the son of the famous billionaire Rockefeller (Michael Clark Rockefeller) disappeared during an expedition in the Asmat region of southwestern Netherlands New Guinea, which is now a part of Indonesian province of Papua. His father decided to sell all the property belonging to his son. The Soviet military attache in France bought this car at the auction in 1962.

The Opel Kapitän is a luxury car made in several different generations by the German car manufacturer Opel from 1938 until 1970.

Kapitän P2 (1959–1963)

The P2 Kapitän came to market in August 1959 and while it still had the panoramic windscreen, it gained a new grille and a revised body with a more angular roof and a new rear. It was driven by a stronger new, oversquare 2.6-liter-inline six (bore x stroke: 85 x 76.5 instead of 80 x 82 mm), still of OHV and pushrod design. Carried over were the 3-speed and 4-speed overdrive transmission; the latter was replaced from December 1960 by a version of GM´s 3-speed Turbo-Hydramatic automatic.

The P2 climbed to a top speed of 150 km/h (93.2 mph), reached 100 km/h (62 mph) in 16 seconds and consumed 12 L/100 km (24 mpg‑imp; 20 mpg‑US).

From August 1959 to December 1963, Opel built 145,618 units of this Kapitän series. No other Opel Kapitän model, before or subsequently, achieved such a high production level.

The large Opels were never dominating players in their market segment on the same scale as the smaller Rekord and Kadett models, possibly due to the strength of Mercedes-Benz in the big car sector. Nevertheless, the highpoint for the big Opels was 1960 when together the Kapitän and Admiral were Europe’s top-selling six-cylinder saloons, with nearly 48,000 sold.

Lomakov Museum of Oldtimer Cars and Motorcycles, Moscow

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