- Customer sport and new talent development with circuit and rally track
- Internationally focused rally program with new Opel ADAM Cup
- Circuit program focused on Germany with new Opel Astra OPC Cup
Dr. Thomas Sedran, Deputy CEO of the Adam Opel AG and Michael F. Meyer, Executive Director, Product Marketing & Motorsport Opel / Vauxhall
Opel is returning to motor racing in the form of an internationally oriented rally program with the new Opel ADAM and a circuit for the new Astra OPC that focusses on Germany. "These new motorsports activities play an important role in the strategic realignment of the company; they are a fundamental element of our brand profile," says Dr. Thomas Sedran, Opel’s Deputy CEO. Especially in grassroots, popular sports, the Ruesselsheim carmaker can look back on a long and successful tradition. The aim of the company is to create a new competition that appeals to customers which is both technically sophisticated and reasonably priced, while at the same time providing a platform for young ambitious drivers to continuously develop their talent.
Dr. Thomas Sedran, Opel’s Deputy CEO in the new Opel ADAM Cup
Rally: Professional talent development in cooperation with the ADAC
With its commitment to rally sports, Opel has the European stage now in its sights. After all, beyond the core market of Germany, there is a strong interest in rallying in all of the key European markets of the brand. Moreover, the World Motor Sport Authority FIA also has fixed regulations that provide entry points and advancement opportunities for young drivers. A rally cup version of the new Opel ADAM, which has been closely specified to FIA R2 standards, will be used in the 2013 season. As part of the "ADAC Rally Masters” race series these customer cars will compete in a branded cup (" ADAC Opel Rally Cup "). The allure of the competition is also increased by the fact that the most successful drivers can expect to win cash prizes. In addition, there is a special "junior rally" points system for drivers younger than 27 years. The overall winner of a set of final trials will get special coaching in the next season.
|New Opel ADAM “Cup“ for amateur/customer sport enthusiasts will take
part in the 2013 season of the “ADAC rally masters” competition as part
of the branded “ADAC Opel Rally Cup” trophy.|
As a strong partner Opel was able to gain an ally in the ADAC that shares an almost identical vision for new talent development. Above all, the ADAC uses its organizational and motorsport infrastructure for the common project. Opel's strategy has been devised to last initially until 2016. After that a modular development program has been envisaged where talented rally drivers can graduate from the “ADAC Opel Rally Cup” to an international level. In the first two of four stages, the ADAM will be employed. In stages three and four the next generation Opel Corsa is expected to be the rally vehicle.
Circuit: “Opel Astra OPC Cup” part of the VLN endurance championships
The automotive element of Opel’s involvement on the circuit is the new Astra OPC. It is being made available from the 2013 season onwards as a racing version for customer sports. The Cup cars are engineered to match the "VLN Endurance Championship" standards which are the most popular grass roots racing series in Europe. The cars will also compete in a brand trophy in their own class ("Astra OPC Cup").
New Opel Astra OPC “Cup” designed for amateur/customer grass roots sports will take part in the 2013 season as part of the VLN endurance championships on the Nuerburgring
Armed with a rear spoiler: New Opel Astra OPC “Cup” is geared towards maximum aerodynamics and will take part in the 2013 season of the VLN endurance championship on the Nuerburgring track.
The highlight of the season is expected to be a 24-hour race on the Nuerburgring race track.
An especially attractive benefits package is being offered for private competitors, which is not limited to top performance and affordable cutting edge racing technology. In addition to the rally project, there is a pot of money with attractive cash prizes. Additionally, customers benefit from competitively priced spare parts as well as technical and organizational support on and off the race track.
Motor sports history: Opel creates milestones
The most succesful era of the company’s rally history began in the mid-seventies. It was quite literally “driven” by the German driver, Walter Roehrl, one of the all-time top rally pilots. During his time with Opel, he and his Ascona A won the European championship title in 1974 and again in with the Ascona B in 1979.
Opel Ascona A Rally – 1974 version. At the wheel of the Ascona A Walter Roehrl and his co-pilot Jochen Berger win six out ouf nine races and win the 1974 European championships.
Bulgaria rally 1974: „Beyond good and evil“ This is how the “Rally Racing“ magazine describes the young Opel team and is confident “to witnessed the new European champions in action“.
The crowning glory of the Regensburg man’s era was his world championship title in 1982. He achieved this with his legendary Ascona 400.
Opel Ascona B 400, here with the rally World champion, Walter Roehrl, in the driver’s seat in 1982.
Rally World championships 1982: The Bandana on the Ivory Coast delivers the decisive win Opel is looking for in the 1982 World championship. It’s the second titel for Walter Roehrl and Christian Geistdoerfer in the Opel Ascona B 400 since 1980.
Opel is just as at home on the racing circuit. In grass root touring cars competitions, the brand with the famous lightening logo achieved countless successes on its home turf, the northern loop of the Nuerburgring race track. From 1993 onwards Manuel Reuter became a favorite with the fan community thanks to his Calibra V6 that competed professionally. He first drove it in the DTM competition and eventually won a title in the subsequent ITC series.
Opel motor sport ITC Joest team with Manuel Reuter and his Opel Calibra (1996)
Further highlights included the car makers’ championship of the DTM/ITC in 1998 in the STW series with the help of his Vectra.
Uwe Alzen pictured in 1998 inside his 300 hp Vectra. Uwe Alzen was the top Opel company driver in terms of points, both in 1998 and the year before.
Overall victory in the 24-hour Nuerburgring race 2003 was achieved with an Opel Astra V8 coupé.
24-Hour Race at the Nuerburgring 2003: Opel Astra Coupé V8 (later the overall winner), the drivers: Manuel Reuter, Timo Scheider, Marcel Tiemann and Volker Strycek