Mar 20

Opel Confirms Ampera-e Plus Other EVs Will Be Wearing Its Badge

 

By Jon LeSage

Opel has confirmed that it will continue with plans to produce the Chevy Bolt-based Ampera-e along with follow-up models under its new ownership.

Company CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann told German automobile magazine auto motor und sport that more electric vehicles will follow the Ampera-e. He declined to comment on an earlier report that he’d been planning to turn Opel into an electric car-only brand before General Motors had decided to sell the company to French Automaker PSA.

On March 6, GM had announced it will sell Opel to PSA, along with Vauxhall and some financing operations in Europe. Questions came up about the future of Opel Ampera-e, which is built on the Chevrolet Bolt platform.

The deal between GM and PSA included intellectual property licenses from GM until vehicles transition over to PSA platforms. It looked like the Ampera-e rollout in Europe would be able to continue, which is now confirmed.

Along with more EVs, Opel will continue with its plan to launch a flagship SUV model.

Neumann said the company will be launching seven new models as part of its biggest-ever product launch campaign. He didn’t specify how many of these seven will be electric.

SEE ALSO:  Opel Drove the Ampera-e 260 Miles to Its Paris Debut

The chief executive also confirmed that he’ll stay in his job as Opel’s CEO under the new ownership, and that other top Opel management will stay in place.

For now, Opel will design and develop its own new vehicles. Future products will be based on PSA platforms instead of GM’s, but it will take several years for that transition to be completed, he said.

While there had been talk about the Opel brand being introduced in China, Neumann is skeptical about it happening.

Opel’s first priority will be to make the division profitable in Europe through tapping into its relationship there with PSA instead of expending resources in Asia.

“The Chinese market is no longer the cure-all to help solve the problems on all the other markets,” he said.

Automotive News, HybridCars.com

This entry was posted on Monday, March 20th, 2017 at 5:55 am and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 22


  1. 1
    Eco_Turbo

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (6:05 am)

    Seems like the perfect time for Opel to join Tesla by selling the Ampera-e online in the US, since they don’t have any dealers. “Imported from Michigan”


  2. 2
    Big Game James

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (6:42 am)

    Opel’s first priority will be to make the division profitable in Europe through tapping into its relationship there with PSA instead of expending resources in Asia.

    “The Chinese market is no longer the cure-all to help solve the problems on all the other markets,” he said.

    Yes, they will have to get profitable fast, or they won’t be selling anything.


  3. 3
    Kdawg

     

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (8:22 am)

    How long will they continue to buy Opel Ampera-Es from GM? Is the plan to build them in Europe at some point?


  4. 4
    Tim Hart

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (8:26 am)

    Great news! The Bolt, all things considered, is the best EV on the market and it would be a shame if it was not available to the European public.


  5. 5
    Chris K

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (8:30 am)

    Opel has confirmed that it will continue with plans to produce the Chevy Bolt-based Ampera-e along with follow-up models under its new ownership.

    Is Opel actually producing the Ampera-e in Europe? From what I’d read before I thought the Ampera-e was a rebadged Bolt, made on the same line in Michigan, and exported to Europe to be sold under the Opel brand.


  6. 6
    bro1999

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (9:52 am)

    Chris K: Is Opel actually producing the Ampera-e in Europe? From what I’d read before I thought the Ampera-e was a rebadged Bolt, made on the same line in Michigan, and exported to Europe to be sold under the Opel brand.

    Yep, the Ampera-e is just a rebadged Bolt. And definitely made in MI.


  7. 7
    George S. Bower

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (10:00 am)

    article:
    “The deal between GM and PSA included intellectual property licenses from GM until vehicles transition over to PSA platforms.”

    That says to me that the licenses are temporary.

    Kdawg:
    How long will they continue to buy Opel Ampera-Es from GM?Is the plan to build them in Europe at some point?


  8. 8
    DonC

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (10:20 am)

    I think this is good news for the EV community. Yes the licenses seem temporary. However, I was excited about the plan to transition Opel to an all electric car maker and it seem that still seems to be the direction Opel is moving.


  9. 9
    Kent

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (11:49 am)

    My sister just bought a Bolt on Saturday. She never heard of the Bolt until I told her about it on Thursday. For the past 5+ years she thought my Volts were all electric.

    Not sure what she’s going to do with her Model 3 deposit now. Maybe I’ll take that over from her.


  10. 10
    George S Bower

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (12:01 pm)

    DonC:
    I think this is good news for the EV community. Yes the licenses seem temporary. However, I was excited about the plan to transition Opel to an all electric car maker and it seem that still seems to be the direction Opel is moving.

    Agreed donc. Good news about an allelectric line up with a suv!


  11. 11
    George S Bower

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (12:02 pm)

    Kent:
    My sister just bought a Bolt on Saturday. She never heard of the Bolt until I told her about it on Thursday.For the past 5+ years she thought my Volts were all electric.

    Not sure what she’s going to do with her Model 3 deposit now.Maybe I’ll take that over from her.

    Glad to see you posting again!


  12. 12
    Kent

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (12:24 pm)

    George S Bower: Glad to see you posting again!

    Thanks George! I’m on this site every day, I just don’t repeat what others have already said so I don’t post much.


  13. 13
    !arry4pyro

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (12:55 pm)

    Looks like SPA made a great deal. They get the Bolt, but more importantly they will be getting their pick of the variants of the Bolt that GM will be building off the Bolt platform. I would not be surprised to see something to compete with the Model 3 in the coming months.


  14. 14
    Loboc

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (1:05 pm)

    Good to see that GM has a way to sell their products in EU even if it’s a sell-through.

    Taking Opel to an all-EV entity could be a good thing. Eventually (by as early as 2025) most cars will be EV anyway since they will be TCO-competitive with gasmobiles.

    Once ya go EV, ya don’t go back!


  15. 15
    Loboc

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (1:10 pm)

    !arry4pyro:
    Looks like SPA made a great deal.They get the Bolt, but more importantly they will be getting their pick of the variants of the Bolt that GM will be building off the Bolt platform.I would not be surprised to see something to compete with the Model 3 in the coming months.

    Model 3 is a sedan which are losing market share to CUV/SUV every quarter. I seriously doubt that GM will go sedan-like with any Bolt variant. GM needs a competitor to the future Model Y.

    An XT3 Bolt variant would be very interesting to me.


  16. 16
    realdb2

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (1:12 pm)

    I’m not exactly going out on a limb here but the Ampera-E could really dominate in Europe this year if it’s not killed by import taxes.

    I for one am kind of disappointed in the U.S. market’s appetite for electric cars so far. I thought the Bolt EV would be selling out as fast as GM could produce them, doesn’t seem to be the case.

    It appears U.S. buyers really value a large interstate fast charging system like the Supercharger network.

    Given the geography and driving habits, Europe is primed and ready for the Ampera-e. Should be fun to watch.


  17. 17
    Sheldon

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (1:55 pm)

    Any chance the new Opel would sell a gen2 Volt?


  18. 18
    dakster

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (3:00 pm)

    I would have been shocked if PSA wouldn’t have been able to sell existing vehicles, isn’t that why you buy out an existing company?

    Glad the niche market of EVs wasn’t deemed unprofitable.

    One thing I am curious about, is what power per KWH costs in European Countries (by country would be more helpful)? Compare it to petrol/diesel costs per liter (which is easy to convert to US gallons).

    Just curious how much more or less it is to use an EV than a petrol/diesel car. Since Europe has a lot of diesel small vehicles that get the US equivalent of almost 60 mpg. No hybrid powertrain needed… Although one wonders what diesel EREV would get…


  19. 19
    James

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (3:52 pm)

    GM needs to recoup those costs it’s out by making Ampera-e euro-compatible.

    I’m with you, hoping that Ampera-e can compete in Europe. Leaf gen 1 has a
    nice price advantage, especially with a production in the UK. Volt/Ampera was
    just too expensive to sell much in Europe and Australia. I wouldn’t pay that
    much if I lived over there. For that matter, i don’t see Ampera-e being a big
    seller over there.

    We’ll have to see what GM does after Model 3 comes out. Will it effect their
    pricing or not? We’ll also have to see if president Trump can knock down
    many of these trade barriers that have kept American imports from being
    price competitive.


  20. 20
    Lunoir

     

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (4:38 pm)

    dakster,

    I only could find it in french from en english we site…

    NPNS!


  21. 21
    Dan Petit/Petit Technical College

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    Mar 20th, 2017 (8:46 pm)

    Any place on the planet where this perfected GM Voltec Technology (even on locally designed platforms) is included within regional other badges is an excellent thing for that region.

    Ampera (Voltec) technology packaged as locally-badged SUV’s and Trucks would work very well already in Europe based on costs of fuel and servicing, as very compelling and competitive technical positive contrasts of GM Voltec versus the now overly technically-cumbersome European ICE conventional technologies.

    In essence, the California cleanliness and fuel efficiency mandates for *American Technologies* here, make American Technologies highly competitive and desirable *over there*.

    So, in consideration of yesterday’s thread, the weakening of future mileage standards, if electrification is not kept incentivized, will certainly weaken American competitive advantages in Europe fairly quickly, as economics of scale may not be maintained here, nor as much R&D continued for keeping America’s current leadership maintained in electrification.

    So Voltec is the very best type of American export possible.


  22. 22
    JeremyK

     

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    Mar 21st, 2017 (7:41 am)

    Kdawg,

    I’m guessing no. By the time Opel set up a manufacturing plant, the Bolt would be 1/2 way through its design cycle and Opel would be pretty far into the PSA transition. More likely the Bolt/Ampera-E platform will phase out and become something else, riding on a PSA-designed electric platform. The Ampera name might remain, but it will probably be PSA tech in the next generation version of the car.