And now, two are for sale, in the US, from the same dealership.
As far as rare cars in the US go, it doesn't get much rarer than a Lotus Carlton/Omega, which is why it's pretty crazy that there isn't one, but two currently for sale at United Imports in Jacksonville, Florida. The Carlton, Also known as the Vauxhall Lotus Carlton and Opel Lotus Omega, is one of the craziest creations to come out of the UK in the 1990s.
The models for sale are both 1992 Opel Omega Lotus', meaning they're left-hand drive variants suited for our US roads. As the rare vehicle was never sold here in the US, both cars have been imported from Europe, with one coming from France and the Other from Italy.
Back in the day, these 4-door sedans were certified supercar killers, and today would still give a base model Mustang or Charger a run for its money (while being way, way cooler too).
If you didn't know this car existed before reading this, we don't blame you, so here's a little backstory on the model.
Based on the Vauxhall Carlton/Opel Omega sedan, the model was conceived from a place of hubris and a desire to create a halo version of the standard humdrum models. At the time, GM owned Vauxhall, Opel, and Lotus, with the latter automaker coming hot off creating the C4 generation Corvette ZR-1.
Using all the experience Lotus had acquired in sportscar creation and motorsport, the company set about turning the car into a rocket. The Opel 3.0-liter, 24-valve straight-six engine was kept, although extensive modifications were undertaken, with the biggest being the addition of two Garret T25 turbochargers pushing 10 psi of boost.
Ultimately, the vehicle produced 377 horsepower and 419 lb-ft of torque, with 350 lb-ft of that torque coming in at just 2,000 rpm.
A ZF six-speed manual used in the contemporary Corvette ZR-1 was added along with a whole host of suspension and brake upgrades so the car could handle all that power being sent to the rear wheels. 0-60 mph was achieved in just 5.2 seconds on the way to the 177 mph top speed, making it the fastest 4-door production sedan in the world at the time and one of the coolest cars Lotus ever made.
Only 950 units were built, with 630 of them being Omegas. Imperial Green over black leather was the only color available, so have fun trying to tell these two apart.
Of the two models available, one has 69,875 miles and is going for $69,850; the other has only 35,531 miles going for $84,550. The cheaper one spent its life in France before being sold to a collector three years ago and then shipped to the US, where the dealership eventually acquired it.
The more expensive one spent its entire life in Italy, belonging to the owner of an Opel dealership and being serviced there all its life before this dealer also bought it.
Both are exceedingly cool and can be titled anywhere in the US. Now would parts be hard to find? Most likely, yes, but seeing as this was an old GM product and some parts bin shopping was done in the name of cost saving, there's a chance it wouldn't be that terrible.
Despite this, you would have one of the coolest sleeper muscle cars around and most likely the most extraordinary thing at every Cars and Coffee, so we're inclined to recommend you skip the Hellcat power and go for British cool instead.
Join The Discussion