Engine Opel Z22SE

The 2.2-liter Opel Z22SE or L61 engine was produced from 2000 to 2005 in Germany and the USA and was installed on many mid-size models of the concern, such as the Astra, Vectra or Zafira. The motor received an atypical design for the concern with an aluminum block and a timing chain.

The Z family also includes engines: Z20LET, Z22YH, Z24SED, Z28NET and Z32SE.

Serial production of Z22SE engines began in 2000. This unit replaced the 2-liter X20XEV and was a joint development of General Motors, ITDC, GM Powertrain and SAAB. The final tuning of the engine was already worked on in Britain, in the Lotus Engineering Corps.

In various modifications, the engine was installed on almost all General Motors models of that time. Officially, the Z22 line of motors went as “Ecotec Family II Series” and were produced at once at 3 factories – in Tennessee (Spring Hill Manufacturing), in New York (Tonawanda) and in German Kaiserslautern (Opel plant).

In Germany and England, the engine was designated as – Z22SE. In USA it was known as L61 and was installed on a number of Chevrolet, Saturn and Pontiac cars. Under license, the Z22SE was also installed on Fiat Croma and Alfa Romeo 159.

The engine was installed on:

  • Opel Astra G (T98) in 2000 – 2005;
  • Opel Speedster A (E01) in 2001 – 2004;
  • Opel Vectra B (J96) in 2000 – 2002; Vectra C (Z02) in 2002 – 2004;
  • Opel Zafira A (T98) in 2000 – 2005.


Production years 2000-2005
Displacement, cc 2198
Fuel system distributed injection
Power output, hp 147
Torque output, Nm 203
Cylinder block aluminum R4
Block head aluminum 16v
Cylinder bore, mm 86
Piston stroke, mm 94.6
Compression ratio 10.0
Features balance shafts
Hydraulic lifters yes
Timing drive chain
Phase regulator no
Turbocharging no
Recommended engine oil 5W-30
Engine oil capacity, liter 5.0
Fuel type petrol
Euro standards EURO 4
Fuel consumption, L/100 km (for Opel Vectra 2003)
— city
— highway
— combined
Engine lifespan, km ~270 000
Weight, kg 135

Disadvantages of the Z22SE engine

  • The timing chain, or rather its tensioner, delivers the most problems to owners;
  • Diesel sound under the hood hints that the tensioner is stuck and the chain is stretching;
  • If you drive for a long time with a diesel sound, the gas distribution mechanism will collapse;
  • Antifreeze in the spark plug wells here means that you overtightened the spark plugs and the cylinder head cracked;
  • Before decarbonization due to oil burner, replace the valve cover, often the reason is in it.

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