Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Opel Vectra is a medium-sized family car produced by Opel, the main European subsidiary of General Motors. In the United Kingdom, it is sold as a Vauxhall. It is also sold in Australasia as a Holden and in Latin America as a Chevrolet.
The first Vectra, known as the Vectra A, was introduced in 1988 as a sedan and hatchback, replacing the Opel Ascona. A coupé based on the Vectra, called the Calibra, was also sold. Both cars were designed by then-Opel design chief Wayne Cherry. Vauxhall did not adopt the Vectra name, retaining its own name Cavalier until 1995.
In New Zealand, the Vectra A was offered initially as an Opel, but it wore Holden badges from 1994. It was not sold in Australia, where Holden instead offered a badge-engineered Toyota Camry called the Apollo until 1997.
The second model, the Vectra B, was introduced in 1995, and the model range included a station wagon version for the first time. There was no coupé. This model replaced the Vauxhall Cavalier in the UK, and the Holden Apollo in Australia. In 1998, Holden began assembly of the Vectra for export to other right-hand-drive markets in the region, although this was aversely affected by the Asian economic crisis, and ended in 2001. The Vectra B is still sold in Brazil.
The current model, the Vectra C (or ZC in Holden terms), is built in Germany, Belgium, and the United Kingdom, and is based on the GM Epsilon platform. It is also assembled in Egypt, along with the two previous versions. A four-door sedan is the staple model, while the five-door hatchback, known as the Vectra GTS, is meant to recall cult models from Opel in the past such as the Commodore GTE of the 1970s and has a different front bumper.
In the UK, the five-door is not considered a specialty model. In Australasia, it is considered more upmarket, though not to the same extent as in Europe.
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