Opel GT Forum banner
Showcase cover image for phillips66's 1969 Opel GT 1900

General Information

Year
1969
Make
Opel
Model
GT 1900
Color
Red
History
So... The first time I saw this pretty package, it was located in Wellington, Ohio. My brother was keeping his Mustang in his neighbors shop. I went over with him to check it out and the original owner had an old rusted out body of a GT sitting next to my brothers Mustang. I asked him what he wanted for his rust heap and he said he would give it to me. He then pulled off a cover and revealed a beautiful red GT that was almost perfect. As I adjusted my stiffy, he then said he would give me this one for a grand. My ATM would only let me withdraw a max of $500 within 24 hour time, and I was heading back to Alabama in minutes. So I did not buy the car. The few days later my Dad bought the car. (I do not know what happened to the rust heap.) My Dad, Brother and Step-Mother worked on the car's interior for a couple of years.
Then a few days after Thanksgiving of 2009, I get a call and my Grand Father (Papaw) passed away. I drove from Alabama to Ohio for the funeral. Along the way my Dad called me and asked me to pick up his cousin in Kentucky. After checking out the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky, I met with his cousin and ran on to Ohio. Hundreds of family members arrived for the funeral. With that many relatives in one spot, offers started rolling in for the 1969 Opel GT. A couple of them were serious about buying the car... That's when it happened... My Dad then looks at me and says he is going to give it to me. I was shocked and once again I had to adjust my stiffy... Of course I just assumed that Dad was just using me to get my cousins to stop asking for the car.
Wednesday was Papaw's funeral. After the funeral, Dad's cousin starts pushing me to take her home. I start packing up and loading my truck and Dad pulls me aside and starts talking once again about me taking the car back to Alabama. I did not know what to say other than sure. We discussed our options and made a plan. The plan was to take my cousin back to Kentucky and then turn around and drive back to Ohio. For this trip my Brother rode along. We made the trip there and back fine. Thursday, I spent most of the day trying to get a trailer from UHAL. They gave me the shaft instead of a trailer. They would not let me pull anything because I was driving a 2002 Ford Explorer. That's when I realized what having family is all about. My Dad started going from family member to family member looking for a trailer to use. We finally found a trailer from one of my Dad's friends. Then my cousin (the greatest cousin of all time) offered to pull a trailer with his truck (2006 F150) from Ohio to Alabama then back to Ohio. The trip was planned.
We left out Friday around 6:30p.m. My Dad and my Cousin pulled the GT with his truck, my brother and I followed in my Explorer. The weather and the traffic was great. However, somewhere around Cincinnati, Ohio we hit our first issue. We got off on 75 instead of 65. We dealt with that issue and recovered finding our way back to 65 a few miles out of our way. While fixing this problem, my cousin discovered a problem with his truck. The engine was skipping. We check the fuel filter, and proceed on. We make it into Kentucky, then into Tennessee. Then we start getting a little sleet. We drove on anyway. That's when I started smelling something not normal... A tire on the trailer blew out. We pulled over on the side of the interstate to change the tire, (while my dad and brother hung out in the warm trucks watching...) After changing the tire we were on the road again. The truck was still driving a little funny. My Explorer was driving just fine, by the way. We seem to be the only drivers on the road at this late hour. The snow and sleet are growing and the roads are starting to get a little more shinny. We make through Tennessee and traffic starts picking up a little more. It's still dark in the early morning hours, now I see some lights pulling in behind me quickly. Because I'm following a truck pulling a car trailer, I am driving about 60ish. The car starts to go around me, then the car hits a shiny patch on the roads and loses control spinning all over the road behind us. The car misses us. We fish tale as well but we proceed, a little more cautiously than before. From this point on every time we crossed a bridge my Explorer would fish tale a little. Then the biggest issue comes to pass. My brother was half asleep and I was holding one eye open. There is more traffic now but still not rush hour quality, I hit a patch of ice and start spinning. Both me and my brother are wide awake spinning like crazy. The whole time my Dad and cousin are driving straight as an arrow just a couple of car lengths in front of us. We spin off the road and into the median between the interstate just past the bridge. We were fortunate not to hit the bridge or anyone else. I locked my Explorer into 4 low and pulled back onto the interstate. Then carefully proceeded on. We reach the Alabama line and my cousin and Dad. They never even noticed we spun out. My cousins truck is acting up much more by this time. We make it to Athens, Alabama and pull off the interstate to the nearest Ford dealership. The time is around 7:00a.m. central. We have to make a new plan. My cousin decides he's going to stay in Athens, while I pull the trailer along with my Dad and brother back to my home in Clanton, Alabama. We load up and get back on the interstate. I feel like a bum for leaving my cousin back in Athens and for the misfortune of his truck. The first thing my dad does is breaks my window in my Explorer... We get on the interstate we see a north bound truck hit a patch of ice and lose control. The truck crosses the median crashing into the far right side concrete barrier of the south bound lane. We pause there with the truck while freaking out about the super huge bridge that crosses the Tennessee River just before Huntsville. The truck driver was fine. As we paused with her, traffic started increasing. Suddenly it came to a stop. Looking at the bridge one by one each car and truck lost control. The cars and trucks were slamming into the sides of the bridge and with each other. It was pure chaos. We were fortunate enough to stay in the clear. The Authorities came into save the day. They sanded the road and two hours later we were back on our way. I drove like a sissy the rest of the way until we pulled off the interstate just a few miles from home. It was a crazy trip but we made it. My kids ran out and attacked me like Dino attacking Fred on the Flintstones. We unload the car move it into the carport and head off to get a new tire for the trailer. Dad and my brother took a little nap. While I watched the Alabama vs. Florida game. (What a Game.) We hung out with some of my family that could not make the trip to Ohio. We got a semi good night of sleep then woke up Sunday morning grabbed a little breakfast at Waffle House, said goodbye to the family and headed on back to Athens to pick up my cousin. The Ford dealer ship there could not fix my cousins truck, so he pulled the trailer back to Ohio as it was. I think I slept maybe 7 hours in that week and drove at least 3,320 miles. This is a big history but it was a crazy trip. Even with all of that trouble I would not change a thing. This kind of stuff can only make a family stronger. I am glad to have a story with my Dad, brother and cousin to share. This car is special to me because It's something that my Dad has worked on, I have worked on and my kids will be able to work on. At least three generations of family have enjoyed this car. That should give any guy a stiffy...

God Bless and God Speed,
phillips66
1969 Opel GT 1900 (Red)

Modifications

Drivetrain
1.9 Original
Interior
Original Tan changing to Black
Audio
Working on a new Radio
Wheel and Tire
Dry Rotten Michelin with tons of tread... Orignial Rims, Considering new rims and tires. (Thinking of 15"Front 17" in Back, Low Profile)

Gallery

Comments

There are no comments to display.
Top