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Chris Bruce2012-02-14 19:49:34

Opel Rekord D and Commodore B Turn 40

Opel Rekord D Turns 40

Opel is looking back 40 years to the introduction of the seventh-generation Opel Rekord, better known as the Rekord D. The model was first presented to the press in January of 1972. It's platform-mate the second generation Commodore, the Commodore B, came later that spring and between them sold 1.2 million cars in the five years that they were in production. 

Opel designed the Rekord D and Commodore B to be more European-inspired than the previous models. While previous generations had looked to the US for styling inspiration, these cars wanted to be more European, and that meant cleaner lines, large windows and a more functional style all around. 

The Rekord D was offered with 1.7 liter and 1.9l petrol engines with 66hp ,83hp or 97hp depending on tune. It was also the first Opel car offered with a diesel engine. In this case a 2.1 liter unit that produced 60hp. The diesel used 8.7l/100km of fuel with a top speed of 135km/h. The Rekord D came standard with a four-speed manual transmission, but an automatic was optional on the 1.9l engine. 

In 1976, Opel introduced the Millionär model to celebrate the car's sales that came with a 100hp, 2.0l four-cylinder engine. 

The more upmarket Commodore got a 2.5l or 2.8l inline six with anywhere between 113hp an 158hp depending on tune. 

The Rekord D offered three body styles: notchback, coupe or station wagon, and for utility use there was a three-door station wagon without rear side windows. The Rekord D was the first Opel to be designed with crumple zones in mind to protect occupants.

The Commodore was available as either a coupe or sedan and was meant as a middleground between the Rekord and the Diplomat. With a top speed of 200km/h for the coupe and 195km/h for the sedan, the top-of-the-line Commodore GS/E with a 160hp, fuel injected 2.8l inline six was considered quite a sports sedan in its day. 

The Commodore even went racing. Walter Roehrl had his professional racing debut in an Irmscher-tuned GS/E at the Monte Carlo Rally in 1973. He managed 45th place overall because he and 6 other cars had to retire in the rally's final leg due to bad weather. 

Opel sold over 1.1 million Rekord Ds and over 140,000 Commodore over the course of their production. 

Rekord Gen.7 [D]Rekord Gen.7 [D]




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