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Pedal Smasher
1973 Opel GT
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If this is the direction the forum is going...I'd rather have the political 'discussions'....what's next? Kardashian updates? To maintain civility on the forum we must act our age and pretend there is nothing new to report since China repossessed Hong Kong!
I'm pretty sure Keith was trying to be humorous. Even if you aren't interested in the Depp - Heard situation, it's everywhere right now. I think the Kardashians might be jealous of all the attention they are getting.

To get back to the topic of this thread though, a 1.1L GT can be more valuable to the right buyer. As Keith said, the (GT) nerds that are out there. If I could have two GT's, my first would be the car I am restoring. An eventually Strato Blue GT with a 2.46L CIH, Getrag 240, vented 4 piston fronts with a disc rear brake conversion, and a Watts link rear suspension for the bigger changes. So, a GT of my dreams. The second GT would be a silver with red interior 1.1L GT kept pretty close to stock, and ya it would be for the GT nerd in me. And there are I think a decent number of GT collectors out there, especially in Europe. I could see a beautifully restored 1.1L GT being totally worth the time and money to restore it, if you were a collector. But if you are more interested in just having that dream GT, then you're going to follow what Keith sees. That is the majority of the people buying a GT. While I'd love to be a position to have a GT collection, I'm not. I'm in the dream GT camp.

It can be worth it to at least see if anyone in Europe or the US wants to buy the 1.1L GT before you start modifying it. After all, it is easier to find a 1.9L GT to replace it as the project car. If no one shows interest despite trying to reach out to our European owners, then modify it. It's also easy to reach them on some of the Facebook groups, by the way. If I was in possession of a 1.1L GT, in my situation this is what I would try to do. At least that way, I tried to find a solution for a 1.1L GT to be restored without a conversion. There's no harm in trying that, right? Maybe I find a good solution where it gets restored and I end up with enough cash to buy a similar 1.9L to work on? Then I wouldn't have to worry about trying to convert the 1.1L GT which pretty much requires you to buy 1.9L GT anyways. You need the engine, engine subframe I believe, transmission, driveshaft, radiator, speedo, and rear axle. I'm sure there are a few other parts too that are different. That's going to be a donor car at least, if not a car that could just be used instead. Big picture, it's in my best interest to try and sell the 1.1L anyways unless my plan is to build a restomod; which would be a custom car anyways and neither version of the GT matters to me at that point.

The fact is, the 1.1L GT is rare because the 1.9L GT was more desirable for the exact reasons the OP wants to convert it. That doesn't change with time. A 1.1L GT could be restored to be a very fun car. The cost to do that though is more or less the same to restore a 1.9L GT, which obviously would have more power.
 

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Hello my name is Jerry... The 1.1 has no get up and go.i already have a 1.9 and want more power and want to keep the fuel economy...

I already have spare parts from 3 opels in storage 70 thru 73 including 3rd members.and transmissions..driveshafts... Thanks for the information...crawl....
If you want the get-up and go, I'd use the 1.9 from the 70, more hp.
I had a 69 w/1.1 that was shot and the conversion to the 1.9 was a piece of cake, forty years ago. No rear change and the radiator was the same, I think? Here is a pic and the kid in the pic is now 47.
 

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Detritus Maximus
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Keith's humor was not lost on me.

Depending on where the OP lives, I have nearly everything to do the swap. The stuff I don't have is the stuff that would need to be bought new as they are wear items or typically rotten, like brake calipers and radiators. A whole parts car is not needed.
 
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Über Genius
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Going from a 1.1 to 1.9 in an Opel GT is much easier than going from a 1.3L to 2L in a Ford Pinto.
 

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Can Opeler
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If you want the get-up and go, I'd use the 1.9 from the 70, more hp.
I had a 69 w/1.1 that was shot and the conversion to the 1.9 was a piece of cake, forty years ago. No rear change and the radiator was the same, I think? Here is a pic and the kid in the pic is now 47.
The radiator is not the same. The 1.1L radiator is itty bitty. The engine crossmember is different and the stock 4.11 1.1L rear end is really too wimpy for 1.9L torque. It wouldn’t be a hard swap but you need a donor car.
 

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Can Opeler
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All due respect to Kyler, who is a great fan of Opels and an asset to the community, but he's also a young guy with limited Opel experience and hasn't seen as many Opels as some of us. AND he also recently got himself a 1.1 Kadett, so, obviously, he's a cheerleader of them.....for now. Some of us have been driving Opels longer than he's been alive and been on this website since it began and seen a number of attempts at 1.1 fix-ups and their sale relatively quickly thereafter. Keith probably has the best sense of the pulse of the buying public of any of us, since he fixes up and/or sells Opels in all sorts of degrees of oem and heavily modified. And yes, most 4sp equipped GT's have pretty worn rear axles(ones that had autos are almost never worn out). 2 of the 5 GT's I've had and driven so far(a new undriven one in the pipeline) had completely screwed 4sps(The other 3 with autos worked like brand new and refuse to break). And everyone who gets a used GT that's been sitting for a long time probably needs to rebuild the engine, whether it's a 1.1 or a 1.9, and there's a heck of a lot more performance enhancing goodies available for the 1.9's than there are for 1.1's.

The best reason to fix up a 1.1 is for the challenge of it, but it's low power is totally inappropriate for a rocket ship-shaped car like a GT. :)
I’ve been at this nearly a decade now and in that time I’ve brought more opels back on the road than anyone but Keith has in the same amount of time. I have also researched and studied these cars more than 98% of people on here probably.

I don’t think I can be considered a “young guy with limited opel experience” at this point. I’m no Rally Bob, but I have rebuilt literally every component on these cars several times over. Except the rear end. I’ve only had to rebuild one out of half a dozen I’ve worked on and that’s only because I wanted an LSD.

And Gordo you would be very suprised how many performance parts are available for the 1.1L engines. I would bet that there are equal amounts of performance parts currently available for it and the CIH. You just have to get them from Europe. Krause-Rennsporttechnik.de

 

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Pedal Smasher
1973 Opel GT
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3,157 Posts
If you are looking at dollar per hp in this situation, the cost to build a performance 1.1L and 1.9L will be very close to each other. The machining will be the same. Cams, pistons, rods, gaskets, etc will be similar in price. But a 1.9S taken to 2.0L will make more power than however much displacement you can get out of a 1.1L. Arguing against that would be foolish. So, big picture it will still be of more interest to the OP to pursue a 1.9L or if he is interested, I know of a 2.2L that could be purchased for $1600 I believe. Then any mods he would do to a 1.9L can be done to a 2.2L. It was looking at the costs involved that made me want to fork over a little more and just buy a 2.4L instead of working on my 1.9.

I’ll go back to Keith’s statement about 1.1L GTs being of interest to the nerds. A GT nerd would look to build up and restore a 1.1L GT, to make it the best that car could be. But for most, a CIH GT is the better option to pursue. Only if you care about rarity would a 1.1L GT be what you want.
 

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"Mira," 1970 Opel GT Working ARA AC, European 2.0L and Midikit
"Kara," 1972 Opel GT Targa, Welded Doors, Rhinolined, 40 DCOE SSD, Working GM AC

I think it's time to add your third opel here just to remind the old farts It isn't your first rodeo either LOL
 
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Back in the day my Father had a '69 GT with a 1.1 and I owned 3 Kadets with the 1.1. Great little motor although a little underpowered. If I was lucky enough to get one I would have to keep the 1.1 just for posterity. I'm a sucker for fond memories.
My last Kadet even had A/C with the 1.1! Talk about no power but it still got me around. Loved that car!
 

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Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer
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OK.. I think this has been beaten to death.. BUT here is the deal. I will trade you a 1.9L GT with a 2.2L in it. For the 1.1L, the 2.2l GT I have is not in the best of shape, but has all it needs. It was my planned project car. Needs paint and doesnt run. But its all there. Even has stienmetz rocker covers.

As noted there were under 3500 made of the 1.1L that means that about 2% of production was 1.1L GTs. If 10% survive to this day there are 350, if of those 10% are in good running shape you have one of about 35 examples left that arent basket cases. I would think the number is less.

Its better to find a 1.9L version as noted. You will need to change EVERYTHING. Front suspension, rear suspension, and drivetrain. For that you would want a donor anyway.. and if you are going to get a donor. Then might as well find a good Opel GT to build from, it will be less work. Kevin Fier put dual side drafts and such on his Kadett and this motor was built in europe up to a 1.3L and in the 105 HP range. Given the 71-73 GT are lucky to get 60 HP and a 2.0L is 104 HP.. its not a bad option to go that route either. I could get you a 1.3L if you wanted one.

So I encourage you to swap cars with someone else, sell it for what you can get and then buy a better 1.9L version, the 1.1L to 1.9L conversion is tricky and in the end all you did was make it a more common car.

NOW that said.. What could fit into a 1.1L and be a great swap for an engine, is convert it to a Rotary. The wieght balance would be good and it is something that has been done before. I think converting to a Mazda Rotary woudl get you want you want HP wise and require less work. As the Rotary is as light as the 1.1L.
 

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Opel Tinkerer and Rescuer
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Hello all...I Own a 69 gt with A 1.1 engine. I want to install a 1.9 engine.. how many changes are needed to make this happen? Thanks...crawlinghamd...
FWIW after rereading the whole post and all the comments. The real answer wasn't really a 100% addressed.

In short the 1.1L is about 100 lbs lighter, and due to the lower horsepower ( which is the same horsepower FWIW as a 71-73 low compression motor ) everything was lighter and smaller. Overall the 1.1L is about 300-400 lbs lighter if memory serves.

By Everything I mean everything. Both axles, the entire brake system, the entire drivetrain from front to rear.

Wiring I think is even a touch different. But doubt it would matter much if it were.

In short, the body was the same interior was the same (Although the speedometer is different as well. ), thats about it. I do believe the mounts for suspension, brakes, and rear are the same as the 1.9L.

So "technically" it would easy. Unbolt the body from the drive train and replace everything. If you were planning on a rotisserie restoration, you could just put the body on the rotisserie and then rebuild everything off your parts cars and put it back together as a 1.9L. But be sure to build it as a 2.0 or 1.9L High Compression motor. Otherwise your just converting it to an even slower heavier car. As the HP difference between a 69 1.1L and a 72 1.9L Low compression motor is like +/-10 HP. But the 1.1L has a much better HP to wgt ratio.
 

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Can Opeler
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FWIW after rereading the whole post and all the comments. The real answer wasn't really a 100% addressed.

In short the 1.1L is about 100 lbs lighter, and due to the lower horsepower ( which is the same horsepower FWIW as a 71-73 low compression motor ) everything was lighter and smaller. Overall the 1.1L is about 300-400 lbs lighter if memory serves.

By Everything I mean everything. Both axles, the entire brake system, the entire drivetrain from front to rear.

Wiring I think is even a touch different. But doubt it would matter much if it were.

In short, the body was the same interior was the same (Although the speedometer is different as well. ), thats about it. I do believe the mounts for suspension, brakes, and rear are the same as the 1.9L.

So "technically" it would easy. Unbolt the body from the drive train and replace everything. If you were planning on a rotisserie restoration, you could just put the body on the rotisserie and then rebuild everything off your parts cars and put it back together as a 1.9L. But be sure to build it as a 2.0 or 1.9L High Compression motor. Otherwise your just converting it to an even slower heavier car. As the HP difference between a 69 1.1L and a 72 1.9L Low compression motor is like +/-10 HP. But the 1.1L has a much better HP to wgt ratio.
Front suspension is fine. The only thing different is the brake piston diameters. The leaf spring will still work with the added engine weight.


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1.1 spring is definitely softer. Back in the 1980’s I helped out on a few GT 1.1- 1.9 conversions and when you left the 1.1 spring in place the car got lowered up front noticeably.
 
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