May 2014 |
[Volume 1, Numero 1]
Manta 400 With the popularity of rallying as both a sport and an arena for the development and promotion of technology & vehicles, the 1970s was a good time for advances in the rally car version.
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After the production of the world's first dedicated rally car, the Lancia Stratos, there were numerous manufacturers looking for successes in order to promote their production vehicles. The Group B rally regulations required 400 versions of a car to be built in order for it to be homologated and Opel was no exception with the Manta 400. The Manta 400 was a 2420cc (147.7cu) 16 valve 275HP (@7500RPM) rear-wheel drive contender at a time when development was getting a bit 'out of hand' - the 4x4s were emerging as viable rallying options and all the big players were putting money into some powerful machines. This was the time of the Audi Quattro, Peugeot 205 T16, Lancia Delta S4, Ford RS200 and the Metro 6R4. Group B rallying finally came to an end due to the high speed, high power and sometimes fatal accidents that were occuring due to the rapid pace of development. It was the 1986 Tour de Corse rally where a Lancia S4 crashed with no witnesses and no survivors that prompted the plug to be pulled on Group B and the emerging Group S cars.
Notizie singole Brano interno
I've been lucky enough to have recently seen Russell Brookes' old Manta 400, tucked away under a tarpaulin a garage somewhere in Southern England. That was quite a surprise considering I was buying a Subaru Legacy at the time :) I shall try get some pics sorted for you all. We've had a few searches here and we've been asked about the rally crash vids involving the 400 - the only one we know of is this 4.15Mb MPEG manta crash vid over at the Belgian Manta Club site.
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Titolo brano interno Due to the FISA regulations which came into force on 1st January, 1982, the old Groups 1,2,3, and 4 became Groups A, B, and N with Group B comparable to the old Group 4. However only 200 vehicles were needed for homologation stead of 400. Opel's problem lay not in developing the car, but in convincing the authorities that they had in fact built the requisite 200. The car finally made its debut in the 1983 Tour of Corsica driven by Guy Frequelin. It lasted only 100 miles before the head gasket failed. The same weekend, Jimmy McRae gave another Manta 400 its debut in the Welsh Rally and was far more successful. He could have taken second place until he went off the road. He finally finished sixth.
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The Manta 400 was lighter than the Ascona 400, having Kevlar doors, bonnet, spoilers, boot lid, mudguards and even lamp holders, saving 80 kg in weight. Other advantages included a more favourable weight distribution with the engine located 6 cm further back. Homologation allowed the use of a Phase 3 engine, which gave the car more power, up 20 bhp to 275 bhp, but it lost some of its flexibility - an unpopular move with the drivers.
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In its first outings, drivers complained of under-steer, but the main problems came from the rear axle. The rash of axle breakages was a mystery as lack of development money meant that the axles were taken from the Ascona 400 where they had been so reliable. The answer possibly lay in the fact that the axles could not cope with the increased horsepower in combination with the lighter body.
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Titolo brano inter no
Titolo brano interno The conventional Manta 400 was still in the shadow of the Audi Quattros and the Lancia Rally 037s, with the new developments from Peugeot and Toyota making the situation even harder. Although a four-wheel-drive version of the Manta was said to be under development at Ferguson, the 1984 plans seemed to make it clear that Russelsheim would be responsible solely for development work: competition work being handled outside the factory by a new group. A unique four wheel drive Manta did appear in Sweden before that country's international in 1983 and was shown to a select gathering of motoring press as something of a publicity stunt. its concept was simplicity itself using the Ferguson System as the only modification to the car's Group B specification. In the ensuing tests with Ari Vatanen the car proved more driveable than a Quattro, but it was unfortunately a stillborn project.
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Books & Workshop Manuals There are a few books available for the Opel Manta and related vehicles such as the Mk1 Vauxhall Cavalier and Opel Ascona plus the Opel Kadett and Opel GT. Every owner should at elast have a copy of a Haynes Manual. There are also some other books that may be of interest, we have a small selection listed below... Opel Ascona and Manta 'B' Series 1975-88... For those occasional repairs, servicing or major overhauls, you can't go far wrong than the Haynes manual. No Manta owner should be without one. Opel Manta 'A' Owner's Workshop Manual (1975) The 'rare as rocking horse' Opel Manta A series Haynes workshop manual. Opel Manta 1970-75 Road Test Limited Edition black & white 92 page softback of the Manta A series roadtest Opel Ascona, Manta 1975-77 Autobook Autobooks' B Series esperimento Opel Ascona, Manta [Indirizzo societĂ ] Autobooks' Manta A Repair and Tune-up
workshop manual 1970-75 Autobook workshop manual Guide for Opel
Chilton's Manta A repair and tune-up manual complete with trippy '70s psychedellic cover.
Other Vauxhall/Opel Books & Workshop Manuals
Vauxhall Cavalier Owner's Workshop Manual (1975-1977) Me stesso This is the 1977 edition of the Mk1 Cavalier Haynes Manual Casa Mia Opel GT Gold Portfolio 1968-73 Via Roma 123 Opel did design some beautiful looking carsRoma andItaly the Opel GT is no 36100 exception. Opel Kadett owners workshop manual The Haynes workshop manual for the Opel Kadett. Opel Military Vehicles, 1906-56 Part of the fascinating history of Adam Opel AG and its less aerodynamic predecessors to the Manta and GT like the Opel Blitz
More Useful Books and manuals
Rover 3500 V8 1976-87 Owner's Workshop Manual
Published on May 19, 2014