Opel Vectra B 21995 - 2002
Model: Vectra (1988 - 2009)
Wikipedia (Vectra): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opel_Vectra
The second model, the Vectra B, was introduced in 1995, and the model range included an estate version for the first time. This model replaced the Vauxhall Cavalier in the UK. The Vauxhall badged Vectra B was the last Vauxhall to be produced at the company's Luton plant, where the end of automobile production was announced at Christmas 2000, taking effect just over a year later.
The model was badged as the Holden Vectra in Australia and New Zealand. In 1998, Holden began assembly of the Vectra for export to other RHD markets in the region, although this was adversely affected by the Asian economic crisis, and ended in 2001.
Engines started from the 75 PS (55 kW) 1.6 L, Family 1 but eventually the 8-valve engines were all replaced by 16-valve powerplants. The 2.0 L Family II engine, with 136 PS (100 kW) was developed as a basis for touring car racing (later in Australia, 2.2 L 108 kW), but the top of the line was a 2.5 L V6 with 170 PS (125 kW). Diesel power came once again from Isuzu, with 1.7 L 82 PS, also 2.0 L Ecotec with 82 PS or 101 PS and 2.2 L Ecotec with 125 PS. In 2001 the all new 2.2 L petrol engine, as carried over to the Vectra C, was introduced with the 2.5 L petrol in its last incarnation being upgraded to a 2.6 L to accommodate emissions improvements.
In 1999, the Vectra was updated, receiving a mildly modified body (that can be identified by the single piece headlight units and body-coloured bumpers) together with somewhat improved handling and better equipment.
Sporting limited edition models included the touring car championship inspired i500, Super Touring and GSi. The first model was developed in Germany by Opel Motorsport, with the V6 engine's power increased to 195 PS (143 kW), and the other two were created in Milton Keynes by Motor Sport Developments. Only 3900 2.5 GSi models were ever produced, mostly in saloon and hatchback guise. With only 317 estate versions produced during this time, they became one of the rarest production Vauxhalls ever.
On model years 2001 and 2002, a last of the line 2.6 GSi was made also but these were limited to 500 cars. These were again mostly saloons and hatchbacks however 37 estates were made. These models received a host of extra upgrades including but not limited to Xenon headlights and larger front brakes.
In Egypt, the production of the Opel Vectra B continued in mid-1996 with two models, initially a 1.6l 8v GLS trim with manual transmission and a 2.0l 8v CD trim with automatic transmission. Later in 2000 the revised model was produced with three models 1.6 8v GLS trim with manual transmission (later replaced by the 1.6 16v GLS trim with automatic transmission), 2.0 16v CD trim with automatic transmission, and a 2.0 CDX trim automatic transmission and all with saloon body style. In 2002 local production of the Opel Vectra ceased in favour of the Opel Corsa Sedan and Opel Astra Sedan.
A related model sold in North America was the Saturn L-Series, introduced in 2000, but dropped from the lineup in 2005. It was replaced by the 2007 Saturn Aura, which was built around GM's Epsilon architecture, as the Vectra C is.
In October 2013, Top Gear magazine placed the 1995 Vectra on its list of "The 13 worst cars of the last 20 years", describing the car as "so mediocre that JC refused to drive it. The resulting six minutes of telly is classic, both cementing his status as a broadcasting deity and ensuring that he would never again be able to buy a kebab in Luton."
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