Opel Kadett (1962 – 1965) Review

Opel Kadett (1962 – 1965) At A Glance


+Simple, honest, surprisingly charming for such a basic car

-Never imported into the UK so a hardcore choice, people might think you're Richard Hammond

Opel waited until 1962 before launching the Kadett A, its small car of the post-war era. The Kadett A was designed to fight directly against the Volkswagen Beetle, dubbed by management as, einen perfekten Anti-VW (the perfect anti-Volkswagen), and a brand new factory at Bochum was built to accommodate anticipated production volumes. The Kadett A was also significant for being platform-shared with the Vauxhall Viva HA, the first product to be co-developed in this way.

Although the Kadett name was not new, having been first used on its 1937 entry-level car, but the nameplate was used on this all-new car in order to instill the car with a sense of continuity. Power was from a new 1.0-litre ohv engine, and transmission was by a four-speed all-synchromesh unit. It proved vevry successful during its 1962-65 life, though it was never sold in the UK. In March 1963, the range was extended to include the estate version, while in October of that same year, a smart looking coupe was added. Surprisingly short-lived A form, but the underpinnings would go on to live for a very long time.