Europeans love supermini sized cars, since they are very practical, small on the outside, big on the inside. The upcoming Opel Ampera-e clearly fits into the category.
In Germany, the Opel Ampera-e will have a starting price of 34.950 € for the entry-level version, while the top of the line version will be priced at 39.680 €. Both prices have the environmental bonus of 4.380 € included.
The Opel Ampera-e will be available for test drives at 40 Opel selected dealerships across Germany, starting late June.
It’s still not clear if GM and LG Chem will produce enough cars for Europe’s demand, since only 10.000 are planned for this year, yet in Norway already more than 4.000 units have been ordered.
When GM and LG Chem realize that this electric car is much better suited for Europe than for the USA, they might not only increase production, but also improve it a little for this market. At least if PSA asks for it.
Now that PSA owns the Opel brand, we have to wait and see how much interested they are in electric cars. If PSA is really interested in electric cars, at least a heat pump and a 3-phase (11-22 kW) internal charger should be fitted into the Opel Ampera-e in a future model year.
With the price of the Opel Ampera-e finally revealed, it leaves us to think were the upcoming new generation Nissan Leaf will position itself. The Nissan Leaf is a bigger electric car made to succeed worldwide, produced in four factories (USA, UK, Japan and China) in larger numbers. If I had to guess I would say that the price will vary from 29.000 to 36.000 €, depending on the battery version.
Without discounts, the rest of the bunch – Kia Soul EV, BMW i3, Ford Focus Electric, Hyundai IONIQ Electric and Volkswagen e-Golf – will have a tough time selling in high numbers. It just leaves the Tesla Model 3 – in the upper market – and the Renault Zoe – in the lower market – to join this electric car race, with the Chevrolet Bolt EV/Opel Ampera-e and the new Nissan Leaf going for the broader market.
Electric cars with better range is great, but let’s not forget that high price is still a barrier. As much as we would like to fool ourselves, 35.000 € is not the price of an affordable car. The best selling car in Europe is the Volkswagen Golf, which has a starting price of 17.850 € in Germany. How much longer will it take to have good electric cars with this price tag? Will the “rest of the bunch” – that I referred to previously – have their prices drop to this level soon?
What do you think? Is the Opel Ampera-e price competitive? How will the competition react?