Opel dusts off Frontera nameplate for next electric SUV

While the Manta is sent to the history books, German carmaker Opel has announced the comeback in 2024 of the Frontera nameplate – Opel’s 4×4 sold between 1991 and 2004 – for an entirely new SUV that will also feature a fully electric version right from the start.

Details are scarce, but Opel CEO Florian Huettl says it will be a fun car with clever functional features. “The name ‘Frontera’ is ideally suited to our new exciting SUV model. It will have a confident character and be positioned right in the market’s core.”

Never a real Opel

The mid-size SUV Opel Frontera was never a real Opel. Instead, it was a rebadged Japanese Isuzu known as Isuzu MU, Rodeo, and Amigo. Several brands built the SUV under license, and it was branded as Vauxhall Frontera, Chevrolet Frontera, and Holden Frontera, as well as a Honda Passport or Jazz.

When Frontera died in 2004, Chinese Jiangling attempted a revival in 2005 with the launch of the Landwind, which was briefly imported as the first Chinese car ever in the Netherlands and Belgium. However, the Landwind’s reputation ‘crashed’ in the German ADAC crash tests, hastening an inglorious end.

On the same CMP platform

The new Frontera will get the honor of being the first production car from the German brand to bear the new Opel ‘Blitz’ emblem. It will replace the outgoing Crossland and come alongside the next-generation Grandland.

Apart from two teaser pictures, Opel didn’t release any technical information. Still, it was already clear earlier that the Crossland replacement is expected to use the same Common Modular Platform (CMP) found under several Stellantis SUVs, like the Opel Mokka, Peugeot 2008,  Citroen C4, DS 3, and Jeep Avenger. That should also make a rapid deployment in 2024 possible.

“The arrival of the battery-electric variant of the new Frontera, along with the launch of the all-electric version of the next generation Grandland, also scheduled for this year, will mark an important milestone in the Rüsselsheim brand’s transition to becoming a fully electric brand,” the company states. Opel will then offer at least one battery-electric variant in each carline.

 

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