Race Retro Classic Car Sale 2019

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1991 Opel Lotus Omega (Carlton)

Lot No.: 382

Registration: J644 MJL
Chassis Number: SCC000019N1067397
Engine Number: C36GET30MC0605
Number of cylinders: 6
CC: 3615
Year of Manufacture: 1991
RHD/LHD: Left Hand Drive
Sold for (£): 36,563
  • Presented in remarkable condition inside and out bar the odd bonnet stone chips
  • With its Lotus Omega document wallet containing the handbook and service records
  • Car unchanged from factory specification except for modern refrigerant upgrade for air conditioning
  • Imported to the UK in 2017 by the current owner. Lotus Certificate of Provenance

Take a pedestrian 4 door middle management company car and hand it to the Lotus engineers at Hethel to work their magic and the end result is a 377bhp super saloon able to hold its head high against rivals from the BMW M sport and Mercedes Benz AMG skunkworks. 

The base 3-litre twin overhead camshaft 24 valve engine was bored and stroked to 3.6 litres, Lotus strengthened the block, upgraded the cylinder head, replaced the crankshaft, pistons and connecting rods and bolted on a pair of Garrett T25 turbochargers with intercoolers. With the Opel/Vauxhall standard gearbox unable to handle the huge additional torque (419 lb-ft), ZFs 6-speed enabled the Lotus Omega to accelerate from 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds, 0-100 in an astonishing 11.1 seconds and going on to a top speed of 186 mph (achieved in 5th rather than 6th gear) , a controversial figure, given that almost all of its rivals adhered to a gentleman’s agreement restricting the top speed of their super saloons to 155 mph. 

Obviously, with Lotus reputation for producing sweet-handling cars, they transformed the handling of the car, converting the rear suspension from an inferior semi-trailing arm set up to a multi-link setup offering vastly superior geometry. Fitment of 17” Ronal alloys enabled Lotus to squeeze in larger vented brake discs and four-pot calipers. With a limited slip differential and larger tyres, the Super Omega/Carlton was now more than capable of handling all that additional power. Only produced from 1990 until 1992, a total of 950 Lotus Omega/Carltons were ever built.

1 of only 415 models produced for the German market, this 1991 Lotus Omega has aged gracefully with its bright Imperial Green paintwork showing little sign of deterioration and the Anthracite leather interior combined with the fluted grey Alcantara door cards and polished wood, the cabin is as inviting as it was when it left the production line. Correct features such as the Lotus badged rev. counter, Lotus embossed padded leather rimmed steering wheel and unique glove box with Limited Edition plaque 0593 are all present. A factory set of driving mats with dark grey piping is in situ to protect the matching carpets. A discreet Racimex boost indictor has been retrofitted. A good history file maps its life during its time in Europe, including a spell as part of a private collection in Belgium, explaining the below average mileage of 64,000 km (39,800 miles). The car was purchased in Europe by its current custodian and imported to the United Kingdom in 2017 and a full service has recently been carried out by specialists Harvey Gibbs. Right-hand drive headlights are now fitted and the original LHD units are supplied with the car. Unique to the Lotus Omega and Carlton are the stunning Ronal one piece 8.5Jx17 front and 9.5Jx17 rear alloy wheels and these are in excellent condition with minor marks barely visible. They are shod with Yokohama 235/45 ZR17 front and 265/40 ZR rear tyres with ample tread. The correct metal tyre valves are fitted along with the factory spare. 330mm diameter ventilated front discs with AP Racing 4-pot calipers and 300mm diameter ventilated rear discs with AP Racing 2-pot calipers perform impeccably and are standard fitment.

This example was manufactured on the 19th December 1991 as confirmed by the Lotus Certificate of Vehicle Provenance. Supplied by Adam Opel A.G. in Russelsheim to Mr Joerg Tuerkismue and according to the Fahrzeugbrief, (German Registration Document), it has had just three keepers. An amazing collection of literature makes fascinating reading from the market launch material to the GM Continental Public Affairs negative photo slides. The vendor was thrilled to acquire this original unmolested example after viewing many substandard cars and it is now only available due to a new business venture. All handbooks are contained within the unique Lotus Omega green leather folder. An amazing opportunity to own a piece of motoring history and remarkable value when compared to UK righthand drive Lotus Carltons.