Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Opel Ampera EV: European Chevy Volt to be Unveiled in Geneva Motor Show

As many anticipated, General Motors announced that it will take the wraps off an extended-range electric concept car at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show (March 5-15). The five-door, four-seat Opel Ampera will feature GM's electric propulsion technology, called Voltec, that allows the car to run exclusively on lithium-ion battery power charged via a standard 230v outlet for up to 60 km (37 miles). For longer distances, the car will continue to drive on electricity that is generated by a small internal combustion engine.

"With the Ampera, Opel will be the first European automobile manufacturer to provide customers several hundred kilometers of non-stop electric driving," said Alain Visser, GM Europe Chief Marketing Officer.

While Opel did not make any references to the Chevy Volt, judging by the mechanical and styling similarities between the two cars as seen in this teaser sketch, and taking into consideration a previous statement from GM Europe's president, Carl Peter Forster, who openly admitted that Opel will reveal an electric vehicle derived directly from the Volt, we think that it wouldn't be too farfetched to support that the two cars are if not entirely, heavily related.

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