Opel Manta: silver color
The Opel Manta is a rear-wheel-drive sports coupé built by German manufacturer Opel in two generations from 1970 to 1988. The Manta was a mildly sporting coupé based on the Ascona family car, akin to the Ford Falcon-based Mustang and its various imitators such as the Ford Capri. The Manta remained rear-wheel drive for both generations and also saw certain competition success. Its name comes from the Manta ray.
Manta A (1970–1975)
The Manta A was released in September 1970, two months ahead of the then new Opel Ascona on which it was based. A competitor to the Ford Capri, it was a two-door “three-box” coupé, and featured distinctive round tail lights, quite similar to those on the Opel GT and which in fact were used on the GT in 1973, its final model year. It took its name, and a few minor styling cues, from the Manta Ray concept car (1961), which also famously influenced the 1968 Chevrolet Corvette C3 (both Chevrolet and Opel had General Motors as their parent company).
In the UK market, the first Manta was sold only as an Opel: there was no Vauxhall-branded Manta (or Ascona) until after the launch, in 1975, of the Manta B1 and Ascona B as the Mark 1 Cavalier coupe and sports hatch (Manta) and saloon (Ascona). The Vauxhall and Opel models were subsequently sold side by side. (In the UK the Ford Capri niche was contested, with only limited success, by Vauxhall’s Firenza, based on the ageing Vauxhall Viva until 1975.)
The Manta was normally equipped with a 1.6 or a 1.9-litre CIH engine, although in continental Europe, a small, 1.2-litre, motor was also offered. In the United States, only the largest, 1.9-litre, engine was offered. The Manta came with either a four-speed manual or a three-speed TH-180 automatic. The Manta was known to be one of the best-handling cars in its class and went on to win a large number of rallies in Europe and the United States.