• VAUXHALL V(6)77 - VICEROY
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The General Motors V Car platform was first introduced in 1967 and underpinned the Opel Rekord C, a stretched version was used for the 6 cylinder Commodore A. The platform was then modified for use on the next generation Opel Rekord D and Commodore B which were launched in 1972, this version was also used as the platform underpinning the Vauxhall Victor FE launched in the same year. In 1977 the V Series platform was developed further and split into 3 distinct variations - the standard V-4 was the smallest platform and was used on the Vauxhall Carlton Mk1 and Opel Rekord E, the V-6 was the same from the bulkhead back but had an extended front to accommodate a straight six cylinder engine, this was used on the Vauxhall Viceroy & Opel Commodore C. Last was the V Special which was not launched until 1978 as the Opel Senator A / Monza and a little later the Vauxhall Royale Saloon & Coupe. This was significantly modified and was the longest and featured independent rear suspension. A full list of all the V Cars is listed elsewhere on vauxpedia. The Commodore C, using the V-6 platform, followed the same pattern set before and was the same as the Rekord E from the bulkhead back but featured the longer front end to accommodate the straight 6 engine in 114bhp 2.5S carburettor & fuel injected 130bhp 2.5E versions along with a slightly more luxurious version of the Rekord interior. There was no coupé version of the Commodore C offered as this market was to be filled by the Royale Coupe / Opel Monza a year later. A 2 door saloon version was briefly available in some European markets but was withdrawn due to low sales volumes, there was however an Opel Commodore Estate (Voyage). Vauxhall's Design Department had successfully modified the Opel Rekord E body with different front and rear end styling along with a unique dashboard treatment to create the Carlton. Similar changes were done with the Senator & Monza to create the Royale Saloon and Coupe, although there were no unique body panels as with the Carlton. Unlike Opel, for Vauxhall this left quite a large gap in their range between the 2 litre Carlton and the 2.8 litre Royale, it wasn't until October 1980 with the launch of the Viceroy that the gap was plugged. The Viceroy was an enigma in several ways - it continued the strange affinity Vauxhall had for naming their up market cars after hotels and even more strange was the white cross on the grille which echoed the sporty VX4/90s and the Viceroy, in terms of outright performance, was not sporty at all. It was based on the Commodore 2.5S with a Carlton style rear end, the dash housing of the Carlton but with a 4 spoke Royale steering wheel and additional instruments and the different front grille.

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ONE OF THE ORIGINAL VAUXHALL VICEROY PRESS LAUNCH PHOTOGRAPHS, AS WITH ALL OF THEM ALLOY WHEEL WERE FITTED. 44120-7 30.09.80

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A PRESS LAUNCH PICTURE OF THE VAUXHALL VICEROY FROM OCTOBER 1980 FOR THE 1981MY. IT FEATURES A BLACK GRILLE WITH A RETURN FOR THE VX4/90 STYLE WHITE CROSS. THE ALLOY WHEELS WERE FEATURED ON NEARLY ALL PUBLICITY SHOTS FOR THE CAR BUT WERE AN EXTRA COST OPTION.

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THE VICEROY DASHBOARD SHOWING THE CARLTON AS THE BASIS BUT WITH THE 4 SPOKE STEERING WHEEL AND INSTRUMENTS AND A SLIGHTLY TACKY LOOKING VICEROY BADGE AT THE PASSENGER END

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THE VICEROY INTERIOR WAS ALMOST IDENTICAL TO THE CARLTON AND MOST IMPORTANTLY WAS THE SAME SIZE, THIS WAS A MAJOR BARRIER TO SALES

The car was unusual in that overdrive was available as an option, one of the few cars at the time to offer it. Unfortunately, Opel’s interfearence in what Vauxhall could and could not offer in the UK was in full swing at this time and was the reason the fuel injected 2.5E engine was never offered in the Viceroy as it was in the Commodore, if it had been the car would have been a worthy successor to the VX4/90. This interfearence would continue until 1987 when the Opel brand was, thankfully, kicked out of the UK for good. There were minimal changes made during the cars short two year lifespan, the most major of which was for the 1982 model year, the last, when the dashboard was unified with the equivalent Opel Commodore, along with the Carlton & Royale, slightly different rear light clusters were also fitted to the Carlton & Viceroy. An Estate version of the Viceroy was never offered in the UK officially but a one off was built for the Queen in 1981 and the car still survives today along with approximately 13 saloon versions. The car was a complete sales disaster, the biggest problem was it had the same passenger room and similar performance to the Carlton but used a lot more fuel and cost more to buy in the first place. Only 2,295 were sold in 2 years. The car received little in the way of media advertising, almost as if Vauxhall were embarrassed about it, only one individual brochure was produced for the car - a rather limp 2 page folder which was not the sort of thing to hand out to a prospective prestige car buyer. It was however incorporated into Vauxhalls twin range brochures, one for the Chevette, Astra and Cavalier the other for the Carlton, Viceroy and Royale. As far as I know only one proper road test was ever conducted which was by Motor magazine in a group test which the Viceroy unsurprisingly came in last place. The Viceroy was not replaced, the expanded Vauxhall Carlton Mk2 range covered the cars place in the market for the 1983 model year.

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SOME PICTURES FROM THE RATHER LIMP LAUNCH BROCHURE FOR THE VICEROY, NOTE ALLOY WHEELS AGAIN

A REAR SHOT OF THE 1982MY VICROY WHICH FEATURED REVISED REAR LIGHT UNITS, STILL SHARED WITH THE CARLTON AND AT LAST THE STANDARD WHEELS ARE FITTED FOR THE PICTURE

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A PRESS RELEASE PICTURE FOR THE 1982 VICEROY SHOWING THE NEW DASHBOARD

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SPECIFICATIONS:

Engines:                  GM 25S - 2490cc inline 6cylinder cam in head – hydraulic tappets, single Zenith twin choke carburettor, automatic

                                 choke, electronic ignition, viscous drive fan 

 

Power:                     114.0bhp (DIN) @ 5200rpm

 

Torque:                    132.0lb-ft @ 3800rpm

 

Comp ratio:             9.2:1

 

Transmission:         9.1in. diameter mechanical clutch. Clutch wear warning light. 4-speed all-syncromesh gearbox

                                 floor shift, Overdrive & GM 3-speed automatic transmission optional at extra cost.

 

Final drive ratios:  Manual = 3.70:1  Manual with Overdive = 3.70:1  Auto = 3.45:1

 

Suspension:           Independent front with MacPherson struts, coil springs. Live axle and coil rear springs

                                 located by four trailing links. Anti roll bars front & rear.

 

Brakes:                    Dual circuit, servo-assisted, with 10.5 inch diameter ventilated discs at front, 9.0 inch diameter

                                 drums at rear. Pressure conscious reducing valve. Handbrake and brake fluid loss warning light.

 

Steering:                 Re-circulating ball system, power assisted. Energy-absorbing steering column.

 

Turning circle:        32.9ft.

 

Wheels / Tyres:       6Jx14 ventilated steel wheels, 175HR 14 radial tyres. Alloy wheels optional.

 

Electrics:                 12 volt negative earth system. 55 Ah battery. 65 amp alternator. Electronic ignition.

 

Fuel capacities:     14.3 gallons (65 litres)

 

Length:                   187.8ins

 

Width:                      67.7ins

 

Wheelbase:            105 ins

 

Height:                     53.6ins

                          

Weights:                  Kerb weight: 2712lbs - Gross vehicle weight: 3837lbs

 

Colours and Trims 1981

Exterior Colour                                   Crushed

                                                              Velour Cloth Trim

 

Polar White                                          Red

Pine Green                                          Beige

Aquamarine Blue Metallic                 Blue

Anthracite Metallic                             Beige

Royal Red                                            Red

Ember Red                                          Beige

Carnelian Red Metallic                      Red

Black                                                    Beige

Astro Silver Metallic                          Red

White Gold Metallic                           Brown

 

Colours and Trims 1982

Exterior Colour                                   Crushed

                                                              Velour Cloth Trim

 

Polar White                                         Brown

Smoke Blue                                         Blue

Aquamarine Blue Metallic                 Blue

Opal Green Metallic                           Green

Topaz Brown Metallic                        Brown

Royal Red                                            Beige

Henna Red                                          Beige

Carnelian Red Metallic                      Beige

Black                                                    Beige

Anthracite Metallic                             Beige

Astro Silver Metallic                          Blue

White Gold Metallic                           Brown

 

DoT Simulated Fuel Consumption (mpg):   Urban         56mph        75mph          

 

                   Viceroy 4 speed manual:             20.8            33.2             25.9

         Viceroy 4 speed manual + O/D:             19.9            34.4             28.2

              Viceroy 3 speed Automatic:             20.0            29.7             24.1    

BROCHURES:

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THE ORIGINAL VICEROY LAUNCH BROCHURE WAS A BIT OF A DAMP SQUIB, JUST A 2 PAGE FOLDER WHICH GAVE THE WRONG IMPRESSION FOR A CAR WITH UPMARKET ASPIRATIONS. V2842 09.80

THE VICEROY DID MAKE IT TO THE FRONT COVER OF THE VAUXHALL ALL MODEL CATALOGUE ISSUED AT THE OCTOBER 1981 MOTOR SHOW

THE FIRST OF A SERIES OF HIGH QUALITY BROCHURES FOR THE VAUXHALL CARLTON VICEROY ROYALE THIS IS EDITION No1 V2476 10.80

VAUXHALL CARLTON VICEROY ROYALE BROCHURE EDITION No2 V2476 02.81

VAUXHALL CARLTON, VICEROY & ROYALE BROCHURE V2519 04.81

VAUXHALL CARLTON VICEROY ROYALE BROCHURE EDITION No3 V2476 07.81

 VAUXHALL OPEL ALL MODEL CATALOGUE V2530 10.81

 VAUXHALL CARLTON VICEROY ROYALE BROCHURE 1982 EDITION V2528 04.82

ADVERTISING:

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VAUXHALL CARLTON, VICEROY & ROYALE MAILER BROCHURE 04.81

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ROAD TESTS:

VAUXHALL VICEROY ROAD TEST MOTOR 04.07.81

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