Opel is electrifying its line-up with its new Ampera. It is being unveiled at this week’s Geneva Motor Show and will go on sale in 2012.
When it goes into production it will be positioned above the Astra and be capable of recharging from a standard 240V household plug socket.
It shares its basic genes (and even design) with parent company GM’s Chevrolet Volt. The Ampera is its European sibling sister car and will be available in the UK in right-hand-drive form in 2012.
The technology that lies beneath, called Voltec, is also donated by the Chevrolet.
The Ampera features more than 220 lithium-ion batteries arranged in a T-shaped pack under the rear seats. They power an electric motor that drives the Ampera’s wheels at all times.
For journeys of up to 64km, electricity is supplied by energy stored in the 16kWh battery pack. Then a small engine will kick in giving the Ampera a range of about 480km.
The Ampera boasts performance figures similar to the average family car, with a 0-100km/h sprint time of nine second and a top speed of 161km/h.