General Motors India shaken the D-Segment with the launch of its flagship luxury sedan, the Opel Vectra in 2003 with a price tag of Rs 16 lakh in Delhi and Rs 17 lakhs in Mumbai (ex-showroom). The automaker bagged 101 bookings for the flagship model in 21 days across India. The car was pitted against Ford’s Mondeo, Toyota’s Camry and Honda’s Accord. The Vectra kitted up with a long list of electronic driver aids and safety features, was the most advanced car in its segment.
The car was a completely built unit (CBU) shipped from Germany. GM India also promised once they sell over 3,000 units of `Vectra’, they might think of making Completely-Knocked-Down (CKD) kits, unfortunately ended-up selling very small numbers. Internationally, the Opel Vectra was great success with different nameplates – Chevrolet Vectra, Holden Vectra and Vauxhall Vectra. But despite of being a good product, it was hardly sold in India.
Opel Vectra comes loaded with features like Air Conditioning, Leather Upholstery, advanced Audio System with Speakers, Remote Boot Release, Power Mirrors, Tilt Steering, Power Windows, Engine Check Lamp, Battery Saver, Seat Back Shopping Hooks, Boot Lamp, Cigarette Lighter, Front Ashtray, Height Adjustable Driver Seat, Rear Armrest with Cup Holders and Integrated Headrests on Rear Seats.
As far as safety is concerned, the car is equipped with many advanced safety features like Remote Boot, Remote Fuel Filler, Rear Wiper Rear Defogger, Rear Armrest, Remote Central Locking, EBD (Electronic Brake Distribution) , Immobilizer to avoid car theft, ABS, ESP, and Rear Seat Belts: 3 with Climate Control, driver Seatbelt Warning for safety against collision and Door Ajar Warning.
Under the hood, the Opel Vectra sports a 2.2-litre, 146 bhp petrol engine mated to a five-speed manual transmission. Also the company was considering launching a variant with automatic transmission, followed by the launch of diesel variant of the vehicle. But before turning into reality, the Opel badge quietly disappeared from the Indian car market.
The major issue for the failure of Opel Vectra in India was the pricing, not only expensive while buying but also at maintaining. However, the car was ridden with problems related to its very complicated electronics. It had all kinds of on-board diagnostic software but just couldn’t stand up to Indian driving conditions and hence spent most of its time in service stations.
The fuel-consumption too was an issue always as it was performance-oriented car. Besides these, other reasons for the failure were relating to the brand such as low-resale value, availability of spares and lack of service centre. Hence, considering the Opel Vectra was completely built overseas. It was sold for just about two years before General Motors pulled the plug on it. The company was anyway killing the Opel brand in India, focusing instead on the Chevrolet brand. (See more pictures of Opel Vectra, below the jump)
Technical Specifications of Opel Vectra –
- Layout 4cyls in line, petrol, 2198cc
- Max power 148PS@56 (PS@rpm)
- Max torque 203Nm@40 (Nm@rpm)
- Valve gear 4 per cyl, DOHC
- Installation Transverse, front-wheel drive
- Type 5-speed manual
- Front MacPherson strut, anti-roll bar
- Rear Multi-link, coil springs, anti-roll bar
- Type Power assisted, rack and pinion
- Front 285mm ventilated discs
- Rear 278mm discs
WHEELS AND TYRES
- Size 6.0J x 16
- Tyres 215/55HR16
See more pictures of Opel Vectra –