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Geneva show: Opel provides glimpse of new GT

Twin exhaust a nod to the past but Opel promises new GT sportscar ‘in no way retro’

22 Jan 2016

OPEL has provided another tantalising glimpse of its all-new GT sportscar concept ahead of its debut at the Geneva motor show in March, this time revealing details such as a centre-mounted twin exhaust, long bonnet, menacing headlights and a clearer look at its dramatic red front wheel and tyre design.

All the elements are there to indicate that the sportscar will live up to the hype of Opel “reinventing itself” and being seen “with fresh eyes” – and that a production version will follow and eventually make its way to Australia with Holden badges.

Specifications remain under wraps for the time being, with the latest 20-second video clip showing Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann walking up to the vehicle, which has its front-left corner partially exposed.

Massive wheels, muscular body treatment, negligible front overhang, narrow upper grille stretching across the front end and a sharp headlight cluster with piercing daytime running lights are immediately obvious.

A single detail image of the rear end was also released, showing two centrally mounted exhaust outlets bridged by the GT logo.

Opel and its UK affiliate Vauxhall both said in a statement that while the car’s design is “in no way retro”, the central double exhaust is a nod to concept cars from both brands in the mid-1960s.

This includes the Opel Experimental GT shown at the Frankfurt motor show in 1965 and the Vauxhall XVR presented at the Geneva show the following year.

“Both were ultra-modern, minimalistic and uncompromising, with a sculptural shape … absolutely clear, minimalistic while also being exciting and uncompromising,” the company said.

“The same philosophy now defines the design of the new GT concept.”

The red front tyre and red-tipped six-arm wheel design pays homage to the Opel motorcycle Motoclub 500, which the company says was futuristic when it appeared with two red tyres in 1928.

As GoAuto has reported, Holden designers are understood to have been involved in the project.

The GT could also be a precursor to the sportscar GM International president Stefan Jacoby last year promised to bring to Australia as one of two-dozen new Holden models due by the end of this decade, although the anticipated V8 (which he said was “likely”) might be overlooked in favour of smaller turbocharged engine options.

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