General Motors confirms Ampera will continue in Europe
Speaking on Twitter, Opel chief executive Karl-Thomas Neumann said the company had an ongoing commitment to reduce the cost of the technology, and that the replacement for the Ampera would be part of a 27-strong product offensive before 2018.
The announcement follows an article featured in Automotive News Europe earlier this week, citing insiders claiming that the two brands would not replace the Ampera when the current generation Volt, on which it is based, is superceded in 2016. A spokesperson for General Motors said this was entirely speculative and that it was too early to comment.
A streamlined production process had allowed both Opel and Vauxhall to reduce the pricing of the Ampera across Europe last October, but sales remain slow with only 332 sold Europe-wide during the first five months of 2014, according to Automotive News Europe. New rival products, the BMW i3 range extender and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, both outsold the Ampera in the UK alone.
However, Neumann has yet to confirm whether the replacement will retain the Ampera nameplate.
‘We see #eMobility as important part of the mobility of tomorrow and we will continue to drive down costs & deliver affordability,’ he said on Twitter.
‘Our next electric vehicle will be part of our massive product offensive – with 27 new vehicles in the 2014-2018 time frame. After the eventual run-out of the current generation Ampera, we'll introduce a successor product in the electric vehicle segment.‘