Cars covered in camouflage to protect their shapes from being revealed too early are rarely attractive, but in the case of the Opel/Vauxhall Adam, the company went all out to make it as hideous as possible.
The Adam isn’t due to be launched until the Paris Motor Show in September, but to whet our appetites, the first official pictures have just been issued. It no longer resembles a rolling wart, and has blossomed into quite the stunner.
If you need a reminder, Vauxhall is the UK arm of Opel in Germany, and is in turn part of the General Motors family. The Adam is a response to the huge success of the Mini and the Fiat 500, both of which are modern, funky and highly customizable from the factory. We’d also put it up against the Citroen DS3 — from which the Adam borrows the “floating” roof design — and the Alfa Romeo Mito.
Customers who want to get creative with the Adam will be offered a dizzying choice of one million different color and trim combinations, so chances are you won’t pull up next to an identical car at the lights.
There will be three different trim levels as standard, named Jam, Glam and Slam, although GM hasn’t provided much detail on how each one will differ, saying only that the Jam models will be fashionable, the Glam elegant and sophisticated, and the Slam models sporty.
Inside, a 7-inch touchscreen display will take care of in-car entertainment and satellite navigation, plus it will offer Internet connectivity and will connect with either iOS or Android devices.
One other thing GM has mentioned about the interior is the option of a roof lining covered in LED lights, just like a Rolls Royce Phantom. Or a stretch limo full of drunk teenagers.
Several different engines will be available, including a 1.2 liter four-cylinder with 69 horsepower, and a 1.4 liter four with either 86 or 99 horsepower. A 1-liter high economy motor will come in 2013.
A six-speed gearbox will be introduced, and all cars will have a “City” button, just like the Fiat 500/Fiat Panda, to lighten the power steering at low speeds. There will also be the option of fitting 16-inch, 17-inch and 18-inch alloy rims.
The Adam looks and sounds great, but how well it does may depend on how it drives, as both the Mini and the Fiat 500 — especially with the Twin Air motor — are a lot of fun.
Prospective owners in Europe will be able to order the Adam at the Paris Motor Show, and it’s expected to cost around £11,000, which is less than a Mini but more than an entry-level Fiat 500. A US launch seems unlikely at the moment.