Opel Kapitan, Admiral and Diplomat (1969 – 1977) Review

Opel Kapitan, Admiral and Diplomat (1969 – 1977) At A Glance


+Superbly well-engineered, will always be remembered for siring the gorgeous Bitter CD

-One for Europeans or hardcore Opel fans

The second generation Opel KADs (Kapitan, Admiral and Diplomats) were launched in March 1969 and pretty carried on where the first cars left off. Except, perhaps, the B models were even less successful. The new cars had an uprated suspension set-up with a De Dion tube axle at the rear, and were slightly smaller than before (but still huge), and offered with updated engines. The uprated Diplomat V8 was the star of the range, once again being powered by a Chevrolet V8 (now 5.4-litres), and available with a long-wheelbase and even a landaulette top.

The KADs remained in production until 1977, and were regularly updated along the way - but serious sales eluded them, never even coming close to their unfancied predecessors. For classic fans, the Diplomat V8's greatest claim is that it formed the basis for the delectable Bitter CD. A little known fact is that the Diplomat V8 was also seriously evaluated for production in Cadillac form - but the plan never saw the light of day due to re-engineering costs. Its replacements, the Senator and Monza, were far more attuned to European market tastes, and were considerably more successful as a consequence.