Chevrolet Bolt To Be Sold In Limited Quantities With Opel Badge In Europe?

MAR 17 2015 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 11

Opel Karl

Opel Karl

Rumors are starting to flow that suggest General Motors “may sell a version of the Chevrolet Bolt electric car in Europe as an Opel/Vauxhall model.”  That’s according to Automotive News Europe (ANE) who sites undisclosed company sources.

ANE claims that General Motors would only expect to sell a small number of these Opel/Vauxhall-badged Bolts in Europe if it gets the green light. Of course, as we know, BEV sales are booming right now in Europe, so setting a low sales target is senseless.

Automotive News Europe adds:

“Company insiders said GM is far more likely to launch an Opel/Vauxhall Bolt in Europe than an EV version of its new entry-level Karl minicar. The German magazine Autobild said that a Karl EV will go on sale at the end of 2018 but Opel sources refuted the magazine’s report, saying a Karl EV would be priced too high for minicar buyers.”

So, out with the electric Karl, in with the Opel/Vauxhall Bolt?  There’s no doubt the Bolt is the superior electric car, but Opel/Vauxhall plug-ins haven’t fared well in Europe, so perhaps the immediate decision will be to eliminate electric cars from the Opel-Vauxhall lineup to now.

However, Opel/Vauxhall CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann does believe that selling electric cars are in the automaker’s best interest:

“We know we need the technology. If no one buys diesel in the future, we need more electric cars.”

Comment made in regards to tightening emissions in Europe.  Neumann was then asked if it’s possible Opel/Vauxhall would sell another rebadged electric car after Ampera production halts this summer.  His response:

 “I don’t know, it’s a very expensive exercise and there is no market for it. There are some early adopter customers who love it and may pay for it, but it’s very difficult to get any scale, any volume on this. We don’t just want to badge something, we want to make it an Opel.”

Video of the all-new Opel Karl and sibling Vauxhall Viva below:

Source: Automotive News Europe

Categories: Chevrolet, Opel / Vauxhall

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11 Comments on "Chevrolet Bolt To Be Sold In Limited Quantities With Opel Badge In Europe?"

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According to other sources, it’s close to a given that Opel will re-badge the Bolt and make an “Euro” version.

Opel needs more EVs and PHEVs in Europe by around 2020 because of emission standards – creating its own cars will probably too costly.

I look forward to more EV choices. The Bolt started a lot of conversations, and it was a brilliant marketing move and should sell well.

I trust it will be available on time, because it can be build using well known, existing technology.

In some ways it can be thought of as a Spark (or Leaf) with the battery of a RAV4 EV.

And the base Bolt is about midway in price between the base Leaf and now discontinued RAV4 EV.

No sense of ambition really, GM is only planning a relatively small production run. Clearly foremost a compliance car.

Yep. 🙁 Suspected such, as there is no way LG can supply so many automakers and give GM enough capacity for this BEV to be built in large numbers.

More likely a battery supply issue then a compliance car. Gm will sell a car that runs on soap and bubbles if it was profitable, they are not married to ICE and will electrify it’s entire lineup in the comming years.

GM, like all other automotive market leaders, has invested many billions of dollars in gas guzzler technology, mostly in building assembly lines. They couldn’t just abandon those overnight to start building EVs, even if they wanted to. They have too much invested.

That’s why disruptive tech revolutions are -never- lead by market leaders selling the old tech in that particular market. Never. Tech revolutions are always led by new players, or at least players new to that market.

GM will be lucky (or more likely, bailed out by the government yet again) if it doesn’t wind up like Kodak after the digital camera revolution… bankrupt in 2012.

Assembly line can be converted to build EVs. Look what is done at Hamtramck. And Even Tesla has assembly lines. If automotive leaders have to transform, they will.

Only when led by the nose…

What was the numbers again? For some reason I was thinking they said 30k’ish per year.

likely for the first years then they will ramp up production as battery supply increases. I wouldn’t be surprised if it reached 100k a year ~5years after launch.

Problem is that some opel cars look nasty. Look at that karl monstrosity compared to the chevvy bolt. I am desperate to get hold of the bolt but if opel keep the same styling as the Karl I will never buy it. No way!