Somehow, despite the vast amount of information that floats around the Internets like globs in a lava lamp, certain rare and special cars still manage to elude us. Until we eventually stumble across them, of course.
Today, we take a quick dive into the GM annals to reveal a special Opel that somehow managed to escape us up until today. Meet the Opel Omega (Carlton) Evolution 500– and no, it’s not a Lotus Carlton.
The Evo 500 first started life as a simple Omega sedan (aka a Carlton for those living under the Union Jack), and it was built for DTM homologation in the early 90s to duke it out with Mercedes-Benz 190Es and BMWs famed E30 M3, both on and off the track.
Bigger than both the Merc and the Bimmer, the Evo 500 was built with help from Irmscher, Opel/Vauxhall’s go-to tuning firm. While Irmscher has also been responsible for some rather, um, less inspiring work, the team spared nothing on the Evo 500.
Irmscher boosted the 3.0L striaght-six up to 230 hp, a full 26 ponies more than what you’d find in an Omega GSI. In went a new forged crankshaft, pistons lighter by nearly 150 grams each, and modified connecting rods. In fact, the Evo 500 actually wears a different engine code due to the number of modifications made.
It even featured an electrically adjustable rear spoiler, Recaro racing seats, new wheels and, to ensure rarity, just 500 were made. And each example wears ‘Nova Black’ paint.
According to PistonHeads, the Opel Omega Evo 500 cost a cool 40,000 Deutsche marks more than a plain-Jane Omega 3000, not an insignificant sum by any means. Then again, it also helped ensure the Omega 500 would go down as one of the rarest, most unique Opels every made. And we can’t argue with that.