We are excited to see in our St. George showroom one of the first Carmels from the factory. The Vanderhall lineup now includes or has included five models - starting with the single-seat Speedster. The past and present mainstay is in the middle of the lineup - the Venice. Next is the up and coming all-electric Edison (currently in the pre-order phase on it - as the electric market continues to develop, Vanderhall is ready). And at the head of our 2020 lineup ... the well-appointed Carmel. The Carmel is the new Vanderhall high-end vehicle, replacing the Laguna model. With these five models Vanderhall and Open Road Motosports has a lineup offering a range of features and prices. Within the Carmel and Venice world, we also now have what we term low, mid, and high. The Blackjack is on the lower side of features and cost. Then comes the standard Carmels and Venices. And the "GT" packages for both include popular options and features bundled, along with premium prices for the GT's. The Speedster and Laguna are currently not in the factory build cycle, as production capacity and demand is being consumed by the Venice and Carmel models.
Carmel 2020 has increased a Vanderhall's comfort, convenience, style, and performance. Yet compared to the Laguna, it is significantly less dollars but yet not lacking in features and functionality. So ... Vanderhall continues to manage production costs carefully, and engineer in improvements across the line.
Below we have compiled a top ten of our favorite additions on the Carmel, along with some photos:
Item 1: DOORS: Convenience. Pull the leather loop and it unlatches and swings open. Notice the cup holder. It is the same on the passenger door.
Item 2: LATCHING HOOD: Convenience. It makes it easy to gain access for service ... and most everyone likes to show off the motor (1.5l, 200hp GM vs. the previous 1.4l 180hp GM). BTW, plenty of power for the weight and profile.
To keep the hood up, insert the cylinder.
Hood lever is inside the locking glove box, where we also see the OBD port and the 12v accessory socket.
Item 3: CARGO STORAGE. Convenience. Behind the seats, the storage compartment has been expanded, with the center piece removed and depth increased. It is about 14" deep, 12" high, and about 32" wide - so a duffle bag can fit, along with other gear.
We offer our luggage rack for additional exterior storage behind the seats and attached to the roll bars:
Item 4: WINDSHIELD & MIRROR: Performance. The windshield frame is more robust, and the mirrors adjust easily. At 18" of length (vs. 15"), and coupled with the seat being down on the bed about an inch and one-half lower, the wind flows up and over the driver. This frame is designed to support the roof option. More windshield options are available at https://f4customs.com/vanderhall-carmel-windshield.html .
Item 5: GAUGES: Convenience. Here we see from the left, 1) the fuel gauge, 2) the speedometer (mph and odometer), 3)rpm and water temp., 4) gear indicator, 5)boost (psi), and 6) is the start button. Below the switches from l to r are the bluetooth, cruise, cruise set, traction control, and the hazard lights. The glove box contains a lock (with two keys) We also notice the air vents / heater vents are closer and well positioned. Little improvements like this abound.
Item 6: SUSPENSION: Comfort. New and improved Vanderhall front suspension. This has significantly improved he turning radius. The stock tires show an improved tire tread on the fronts - 235/35 R19's and the back - 275/35 ZR19 (the tire pressure sticker / reminder is behind the seats.
Item 7: WHEELS: Design. The stock wheels on the Carmel are attractive. Open Road Motosports has other tire and wheel options available.
Item 8: ENGINE: Performance. The engine is upgraded from the GM 1.4l 180 hp ecotec to the 1.5l 200 hp. This offsets the small increase in weight of the Carmel - dry weighing in at 1505 pounds. Performance will not be an issue. Optional paddle shift is along the steering wheel, not on the arem rest.
Item 9: LOOK: Aesthetic. I like the looks of all the models, but the slightly larger roll bars and rear panel design are a step up, and also the height of the doors adds a refined and strong side appearance. The front grill is about 4" wider, but still looks like a roadster from the front. Moving the vent to the front of the hood is attractive, but it is also attractive where it is on the other models.
Overall the curves and smooth flow are what we are familiar with in the other models and the Carmel continues the legacy.
Nice pipes along the sides - a little longer and 3" vs. 2" depending on the model - you can both hear and see!
The Poseiden Blue Metallic is a beautiful dark color in shade or full sunlight. It looks dark in the shade, and a deep rich color in the direct sunlight. We've never been disappointed with any of the Vanderhall colors on the composite body panels - they are rich and shiny.
Item 10: INTERIOR: Function & Fashion. A lot more little things we like, but we'll lump them here under 10. The richer tan color on the seats really stands out (pops!), along with snap-on floor mats. We will want to order spare floor mats. And adding a little length to the seat belt buckle makes it so much easier to engage. And in doing so, the separation between the two seats gives each party some elbow room. My wife won't be jabbing me as much. That is good.