Opel Manta
MantaWorld - For fans of the Opel Manta

Opel Manta History

The Opel Manta B (1975-1988)

The Opel Manta B and Opel Ascona B were introduced in the Summer of 1975. The new chassis was 40% stiffer than that of the original Manta A and a few centimetres longer too plus there was an integral roll bar introduced into the B pillars. The 1.6 and 1.9 CiH engines were used from its predecessor and the new body was yet another classic design. The Manta B also shared its shape with the Vauxhall Cavalier Coupe and Cavalier sports Hatch and this was derived form the Chevy (Chevrolet) Monza. Thus the Manta C and Manta CC were derived being the Coupe and the Combination Coupe or hatchback.

Unlike the A series, the Manta B was not exported to the US, but they'd had the Chevy Monza since 1970 so the shape was already 5 years old.

By the summer of 1979 the chrome was being replaced by black chrome and plastic and the colourful interiors, the blues and reds, were drifitng toward grey and black by 1980 with the Manta GTJ was one of these new models.

Then in 1982 the nosecone doubled the number of vents and in 1983 the GTJ had a lighter 1.8S engine and became the Manta GT.

The rare i200 and i240 were produced in '83 after the success of the Manta 400. Both had more power and torque than the standard 2.0E variants producing 125HP and 136HP respectively and were available in silver or white in Opel Team colours.

In 1984 the Opel Manta GTE was available with the 2.0E 110HP engine as standard and the Ronal 5 spoke alloy wheels.

The Irmscher Exclusive was introduced in 1988 and had a 3-piece spoiler like that of the Manta 400, an integral number plate in the rear bumper plus panel where the old GTE plates were, twin light kit and Irmscher steering wheel.

Production of the Manta ceased in 1988 with the last vehicle, a white GSi, being rolled off the production line destined for the Opel works museum. After 13 years the Manta B was Opel's longest running production car with over 550,000 cars produced. Over the complete history of the Manta, 18 years in all, over a million in total were made.

Since the end of production GM has only really produced 2 similar cars- the Calibra and the Astra Coupe, though there are enough Mantas and fans out there to keep the Opel Manta alive for many years to come.

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