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Opel introducing Ampera-e at Paris Show; European cousin of Chevy Bolt

Opel will introduce the Ampera-e at the upcoming Paris Motor Show in September. Ampera-e is the European cousin to the Chevy Bolt (earlier post), as the Ampera was to the Chevy Volt.

In the run-up to the world premiere, Opel is touting the performance of the battery-electric vehicle. With maximum torque of 360 N·m from the 150 kW electric motor, the compact car accelerates from 0 to 50 km/h (31 mph) in 3.2 seconds; acceleration from 80 to 120 km/h (50 to 75 mph) for overtaking in 4.5 seconds (provisional figures). The Ampera-e thus performs at the same level as OPC models, the sporty spearheads of Opel.


The Opel Ampera-e makes electromobility fully feasible for everyday use and ready for the future. The Ampera-e demonstrates impressively how well sustainability and driving pleasure can form a unity. And with its strong-as-an-ox electric motor, it delivers pure fun-to-drive.

—Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann, Opel CEO

The compact proportions of the Ampera-e are enabled by the battery pack being mounted flat, under the vehicle floor. The efficient packaging of the battery also enables a roomy interior providing comfortable seating for five passengers and trunk space comparable with that of a car in the compact class.

The Ampera-e has the newest generation of IntelliLink infotainment as well as Opel OnStar onboard. Subject to availability, the award-winning connectivity and service assistant simultaneously offers up to seven mobile devices access to its Wi-Fi hotspot.

he Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible IntelliLink systems bring the world of smartphones into the Ampera-e.



It will be very interesting to see - in Paris - what happens to torque and power in next year's LEAF and ZOE. A facelift for the LEAF is widely expected which should bring better looks and improved aero, along with an upgraded battery pack with 40 kWh user-exploitable (from ~46 kWh gross capacity), and the ZOE allegedly gets that same pack. But I haven't seen any information yet on torque and power levels. Presumably these will also rise, since that is quite easy and inexpensive to do with the new, more powerful pack.

Unless Nissan and Renault increase torque and power the Bolt/Ampera-e is probably the king in 2017. But if the Japanese and French brands get close on performance, it will be a three-way battle - with the ZOE likely being the best car, but only available in Europe. I reckon the new LEAF will be very close to the Bolt's range in the conditions where you need it - travelling on highways at near-constant, high speed. The current LEAF already has a much lower coefficient of drag than the Bolt, and with better aero (as well as better looks!) the LEAF will be much closer to the Bolt in these conditions than the 46 vs 60 kWh capacities would lead one to believe. For someone like me, who doesn't go on long trips very often, the lower price of LEAF/ZOE may then win the day.

The ZOE also has by far the best onboard charger. I wish Nissan would equip the LEAF with one as well. Today, ZOE owners can charge at 43 kW for less than half the price per minute than my LEAF has to pay for CHAdeMO - and I have hardly seen rates above 40 kW...

Thomas Lankester

You may not be aware that with the last incremental upgrade of the ZOE (last year?) the range was extended but the charge rate of the Chameleon charger was cut in half to 22kW. Also, in the UK, rapid charging via the electric highway is the same price for all vehicles (£6 per half hour with CHAdeMO @ 50kW DC).

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