In late 2019, I put together a story on the Opel Kadett Superboss – a hot hatch built to take on the BMW 325is that was dominating early-’90s South African Group N racing. Those days are long gone now, but the rivalry amongst owners of these two local homologation specials still lives on.
Recently, Mo from CarCandy Inc. thought it was about time to host a meet-up for Superboss and 325is owners. This led him to embark on a monstrous task: getting as many owners and cars together in one place at one time for a casual 30-year reunion of sorts.
As both models were produced in limited numbers, there aren’t too many left in running condition these days. And as their values rise, they’ve definitely become more of a rare sight on the road too, so Mo achieved quite a thing by getting such a larger number of these cars together.
If you can believe it, COVID-19 actually helped in a way. With most big events still cancelled here in South Africa, many people have plenty of spare time in the weekends, so automotive gatherings like this are really being embraced.
I met up on the morning of the meet with a few of the Superboss guys to cruise to the initial meet point.
At this location we were met by a large contingent of of BMWs. Most were completely stock, but a few had aftermarket wheels and there was even a turbocharged example or two. A lone BMW 333i also snuck in, the same car we’ve previously featured no less.
It wasn’t long before the carpark was also overun with Superbosses in a variety of colours and specification – most original, some tuned.
After a bit of chit-chat and lighthearted banter, everyone headed off to the event’s end destination a few kilometres down the road.
The 357 is a local tuning and custom car shop, and being closed to the public on this particular weekend day made it the perfect place to host the 44 cars – 19 BMWs and 25 Opels – that had shown up. It took a while for everyone to get through the small entrance, but no one seemed to mind.
Inside, it was time to soak up the atmosphere. The Opel drivers talked about oil leaks and the BMW drivers had long conversations about the weight savings they could achieve by removing indicator bulbs from their cars.
While these days manufacturers are all about hiding as much as possible under big plastics covers, the Superboss and 325is come from an era when engines actually looked good, and therefore were properly showcased.
An E30 M3 managed to get through the gates, but no matter how much it tried to blend in, its boxy arches were a dead giveaway. It’s a real shame that this model was never sold new in South Africa.
At the end of the day, we also managed to get Superbosses in every colour originally offered together, which is something I don’t even think Opel South Africa managed to do. We also added two Group N racing replicas for good measure.
A meet like this is really what car culture is all about; different people with different tastes all coming together to enjoy a good day out. With everyone having been in lockdown for extended periods of time, any excuse to get out and drive is a good one.
I’m a big fan of both these cars, but given the choice I’d definitely have a 325is, mainly because it’s rear-wheel drive and has the sweet six-cylinder sound. What about you?