Vauxhall has announced the list price of its 2012 Ampera extended-range electric vehicle. It will cost £28,995 – after the £5,000 Government Plug-In Car Grant is subtracted.
This means that it will not be the most expensive new Vauxhall on sale when it comes to market in early 2012. Several Vauxhall Insignias cost much more than the futuristic Ampera.
Indeed, Vauxhall admits the first models will be loss-leaders (they will be selling them for less than the cost to make them), making the Ampera potentially one of the best new car deals around.
Additional Vauxhall Ampera money savers
It’s not only the £5k Plug-In Car Grant that will reduce the cost of Vauxhall Ampera ownership. The Government is also offering free VED (car tax) and a minimal 5% company car Benefit In Kind tax rate.
London Mayor Boris Johnson is adding to this with free Congestion Charge eligibility, too.
This is why Vauxhall expects the Ampera to be an instant winner when it goes on sale. Large company fleets have already been targeted as key buyers.
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Extended Range ability
The secret to the Vauxhall Ampera is its extended-range electric vehicle architecture.
Cover up to 50 miles without recharging, and you’ll run on battery power alone. Exceed this and you won’t have to stop and recharge. Instead, power will be generated by an onboard petrol generator. This boosts the range by another 310 miles, giving up to 360 miles in total.
Vauxhall reckons a full electric charge will take around four hours. At current rates, this will cost around £1.
EV market diversifies
The arrival of the Vauxhall Ampera in early 2012 further broadens the UK electric vehicle (EV) market. Instead of being all about purely electric cars, it is incentivising cars with an electric base, but other solutions to extend their range.
Plug-in hybrid cars are similar to the Vauxhall Ampera, while future fuel cell cars will replace the Ampera’s combustion engine with an on-board hydrogen fuel cell.
This is why the Government’s CO2 stipulation of 75g/km is so important – and why the Vauxhall Ampera is able to qualify, despite not being a pure EV.
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