OPEL CEO’S HERITAGE GEM
IN THE long tradition of senior car executives owning at least one classic car, in order to show their heritage roots, Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann has recently acquired a very rare 1967 Diplomat V8 two-door hardtop. The coupes were constructed for
by specialist car builder Karmann between 1956 and 1967. Only 347 sold Karl’s coupe is the last one ever made.
All of the coupes are powered by a 5.4-litre Chevrolet V8 engine (the “327”, in old language). At the time they were one Germany’s most expensive cars, retailing for seven times price a VW Beetle.
The four-door sedan version of the Diplomat was styled by former Holden design boss Leo Pruneau in March 1962 when he working General Motors’ headquarters in Detroit. Immediately after finishing Opel penned the HD Holden, which is why Opel and Holden have similar styling themes.
Indeed, if you ever wanted to know what a HD two-door hardtop coupe would looked like, the Opel Diplomat V8 is as close as will come.
Neumann was previously with VW and has been given the task of turning around money-losing
David Burrell is the editor of www.retroautos.com.au