PICK OF THE DAY: Pristine One-Owner 8,600-Mile Opel GT

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Often referred to as a “Mini Vette,” at least in the US, the Opel GT in fact pre-dates the car to which it’s likened, the C3 “coke-bottle” Corvette, by some three years. It, and the Big Vette, take their styling cues from the Ferrari GTO as well as the Pontiac Banshee show car, but to label the Opel GT as a smaller version of a 300+ horsepower American icon is probably off the mark. This is especially true in that, despite the smaller exterior dimensions, they are about the same inside. Furthermore, “Mini Vette” to some extent discredits the GT for what it is: a comfortable, economical, affordable and fun people’s sports car. In that respect, it is much more Karmann Ghia or Alfa Giulietta than Corvette. They were peppy enough and handling took some getting used to, but was decent. Yet they never earned any credentials in motorsport so were missing that true sport in their sports-carness. On top of that, their relative low price opened them to neglect, not worth restoring. Looking at current values, there is some validity to that. What few Opel GTs come on the market, are typically those that have spent some considerable time in a field or the back of a barn. Most are advertised in such a state or strapped to a flatbed. In any case, their decay would take some rather ambitious restoration. For anyone truly interested in an Opel GT, finding one in original, well-preserved condition is the way to go. This is seemingly a needle in a haystack, yet two such examples have come on the market in the last week. This example is especially unique in that, with the exception of some proper maintenance items, it is completely original through the stewardship of a single loving owner. With just a tick over 8,600 miles on the clock, it is as close to a showroom fresh Opel GT as anyone is likely to find. Its Chrome Yellow is also a nice alternative to the typical red and looks especially smart against the black interior (where later models were white). When taking into account where other German cars of this vintage—and ok, the C3 Corvette too—are headed, the Opel GT may just be the sleeper in the bunch. This pristine example, priced at $9,500, may turn out to be an extraordinary bargain to boot. Find it here on Craigslist in West Orange, NJ.

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