Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,386 pages of information and 233,857 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.


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19xx. Photo at the 2010 LBVCR.
19xx. Photo at the 2010 LBVCR.
June 1909. Wilhelm Opel.
November 1909.
February 1914.
October 1937.
July 1938.
1956. Kapitan.
1963. Opel Kadett.
October 1967.
October 1968. Opel GT.
1970. Opel Kadett.
October 1972.
October 1973. Opel Kadett.
Reg No: BE-38-57.
October 1971. Opel Rekord.
October 1974. Commodore.
October 1975. Manta and Ascona
October 1976. LHS page. Opel Ascona.
October 1976. RHS page. Opel Ascona.
1980. Opel Commodore.

Opel a German maker had a range of road vehicles.

Adam Opel went into business as a manufacturer of sewing machines.

Later he diversified into bicycle manufacturing.

His wife and 5 sons took charge of the business after his death in 1895

1898 Acquired the small Lutzmann Factory which took the business into the early automobile industry.

1900 Following the dissolution of the partnership, Opel's son (presumably Wilhelm von Opel) signed a licensing agreement with the Automobiles Darracq S.A. to manufacture vehicles under the brand name "Opel-Darracq". The vehicles were Opel bodies mounted on a Darracq chassis, powered by a 2-cylinder engine.

1902 Venture with Darracq to build Opel Darracq in Germany.

1906 The company started to make cars to their own design

1907 stopped making the Opel-Darracq.

1908 A new Opel car was introduced to the British market by British Electromobile Co

1911 the factory was virtually destroyed by fire and a new one was built with more up to date machinery; manufacture of sewing machines was ended. Production now consisted of bicycles, cars and motorcycles.

By 1913 they were the largest car maker in Germany.

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices see the 1917 Red Book

1929 General Motors bought 80 percent of the company

1931 GM acquired the rest of the company that it did not already own.

In the 1930s a small number of buses were sold in Britain.

Early Registrations

See Also


Sources of Information

  • Ian Allan - British Buses Since 1900 - Aldridge and Morris
  • [1] Cars Directory