When GM announced the Volt-based Opel/Vauxhall Ampera was being killed due to lack of sales in Europe, it promised a replacement would come, and sure enough it has – the Chevy Bolt rebadaged.
To be called the Ampera-e, the new Opel was revealed by CEO Mary Barra yesterday at the CAR Symposium in Bochum, Germany, but details are scant.
A press release for the reveal says generically only that “Opel will launch a revolutionary new car” as though to create a distinction from the Bolt, and the Bolt was not named.
As the images indicate, the new Opel with in-floor battery is the spitting image of GM’s 2017 Chevy Bolt EV, a 200-plus-mile (322 km-plus) all-electric car due for production at the end of this year, and to be distributed nationwide in the U.S.
No mention of EV range or other powertrain specs were made by Opel for the Ampera-e, but Barra gave an overview statement on the topic.
“GM and Opel have always been convinced that electric cars will play a defining role in future mobility,” said Barra. “The game-changing technology of the Ampera-e is a significant step toward realizing that vision. Our new battery electric car is also another boost for Opel’s reputation for making innovative engineering widely accessible.”
Instead of talking about where the Ampera-e came from, the focus for this new model announcement was to paint a general picture of where it’s going.
Opel said trends such as urbanization and environmental concerns have made the Ampera-e a sustainable solution for those needs.
“Electric vehicles have the potential to make a significant contribution to climate protection and emissions reduction”, says Opel group CEO Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann. “The new Opel Ampera-e will open the road to electric mobility by breaking down the barriers of high price and short driving range.”
The vehicle will include GM’s OnStar connectivity, and promises roomy seating for five.
No pricing or release date was announced. Also not announced was a Vauxhall variant but one might surmise with an Opel press release posted to the Vauxhall media site and Vauxhall media reps listed as contacts, GM may have plans for our friends in the UK.