sharperedgeengines Auto Parts


Over 15 Million Engines and Transmissions

sharperedgeengines Used Engines , Transmissions Electric Opel Manta GSe Is a One-Off Restomod of a Cult Favorite

Electric Opel Manta GSe Is a One-Off Restomod of a Cult Favorite

Electric Opel Manta GSe Is a One-Off Restomod of a Cult Favorite
Electric Opel Manta GSe Is a One-Off Restomod of a Cult Favorite
  • The 1970s-era Opel Manta was mainly a Europe-market car, although it was sold in the U.S. for four years.
  • The earlier Manta A has become a cult favorite, so it makes sense that Opel chose it as the subject of a restomod to showcase electrification in the Manta GSe ElektroMod.
  • It's small, light, and low on horsepower and range, but we love it anyway. Too bad Opel has no plans to manufacture one.

    Few Americans remember the Opel Manta, even though it has been sold here from '71 through '75 and, as we wrote in our November 1976 issue, "has always found favor with this magazine." It's a different story in Europe, where the original Manta had a successor that was built into the late 1980s. But while the Manta B was long seen as a tacky pseudo-racer, its image just recently beginning to recover, the Manta A has always been regarded as a real designer piece: a car priced for the masses, but of almost stunning beauty and sensuality.

    Prices for vintage Manta A models have long been on the rise, and given its cult status, it was a natural fit when Opel was looking for a suitable candidate for a restomod as a showcase for electrification. And so Opel's engineers took a Manta A and turned it into a compact, sporty stand-alone EV that makes us long for a time of smaller, lighter cars—and perhaps even look forward to an electrified future.

    The original Manta was fitted with 1.2-, 1.6-, and 1.9-liter four-cylinder engines, rated between 60 and 105 horsepower; the top-of-the-line GT/E was rated at 117 mph and took around 11 seconds for the zero-to-60-mph sprint, underscored by Opel's typical brawny sound.

    The electric conversion bumps power to 147 horsepower, which are still transmitted to the rear wheels through a four-speed manual transmission. Rowing through the gears is possible but not necessary. You can also just leave it in fourth gear. The instantly available 188 pound-feet of torque renders the first three gears strictly optional.

    The relatively small 31.0-kWh battery pack, which can be recharged at 9 kW, limits range to a modest 125 miles, but it also helps keep weight at just around 2500 pounds. This EV is nimble and likes to be tossed around corners, especially since its 195/40R-17 front and 205/40R-17 rear tires, on Ronal wheels, provide far more grip than the Manta's original rubber.

    Opel calls the one-off EV the Manta GSe even though, back in the Manta A's time, the GS and GS/E designations were reserved for the upmarket Commodore range. Visually, it is a highly successful restomod effort: the glass and panels remain untouched, the chrome bumpers are gone, the quad headlights make way for Opel's current headlight style, and the quad taillamps are replaced with LED units. The black hood, a signature element of Opel's sporty models, remains, and the "visor" that takes the space of the grille can display messages, such as the slightly cringeworthy "I am on a zero e-mission."

    The interior is enhanced with ultra-futuristic display panels, the original airbag-less steering wheel gets a 12-o'-clock mark, and the headliner is now clad with Alcantara. As a fun touch, the recuperation rate can be adjusted with a classic slider positioned below the central screen.

    Keeping sensitivities of the collector scene in mind, Opel is quick to point out that the Manta GSe was created from a car that needed restoration anyway; no pristine example has been touched. And they even point out that it would be possible to revert this example to its original condition. To which we say: Don't do it. And figure out how to put this one into production.

    This content is imported from {embed-name}. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.
        This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at