Detroit-based General Motors Company's (NYSE: GM) dual European brands, Opel and Vauxhall, released Wednesday the first teases of the new ADAM city car which seems to have been designed to compete directly with the popular Fiat 500 and BMW's Mini.
The car will be available in January 2013 with three mystifying trim levels or "moods," to quote Opel, designated ADAM Jam, ADAM Glam and ADAM Slam. The video ad for the ADAM features a cast of generically unique people that ostensibly bought either Jam, Glam or Slam to set themselves apart -- the obvious message being that you too can set yourself apart from the pack by buying an Opel ADAM. Of course, you have to live in Europe or the UK for that to happen.
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The car, despite fine exterior styling, strays dangerously close to gimmick with its cheesily named moods. Some of the options include a variety of roof, body and interior colors and a very odd "LED-lit 'starlight' roof trim" that resembles a three-year-old's nightlight in the video advertisement. The inclusion of the LED starlight feature may be the worst automotive design gimmick since Volkswagen put a fake vase and sunflower in the previous version of the new Beetle.
"No other car in this segment can be personalized as much as the Opel ADAM, because we are offering virtually unlimited exterior/interior color, fabric, décor and kit combination possibilities," Opel Vice President of Design Mark Adams said Wednesday.
Opel kindly informs excited potential customers (who are almost undoubtedly enormous fans of the Eurovision music contest) that the ADAM will include Side Blind Spot Alert, Advanced Park Assist and smartphone integration. Oh, and the ADAM offers three choices of diminutive engine ranging from 70 to 100 horsepower.
The ADAM will almost assuredly never make it to a U.S. market for regulatory reasons, and it's unlikely that American drivers would tolerate such a tiny engine or silly styling packages such as Jam, Glam or Slam, which is too bad. The ADAM, for all of its gimmicks, looks great from the outside and could be the perfect car for congested New York streets.
No word yet on price or top speed, but Motor Trend predicts something in area of £11,000 ($14,000).
General Motors Company (NYSE: GM) shares rose 6 cents to $19.86 Wednesday afternoon.