GM Europe – That’s Opel & Vauxhall – has revealed a two seat electric Urban Car Concept, said to herald a new era of low-cost urban transport.
We’ve come to the conclusion that car makers now employ designers who were 10 years old in 1985. That’s the only explanation for the raft of Sinclair C5 ‘Homage’ cars arriving on the car scene. And the latest of these is an electric urban car concept from Vauxhall / Opel, which will arrive in Frankfurt next week.
The un-named concept from Vauxhall is said by the firm to have ‘Production Potential’ with claims that it will ‘Revolutionise urban transport’. So, no ambition there then.
Featuring a very similar 1+1 tandem seating arrangement as the current crop of electric city go-karts, Vauxhall claims the unspecified motor and battery pack to have a range of 60 miles and a top speed of 75mph.
There is a look of the Vauxhall Ampera at the front, but the rest of the little EV follows the ‘Wheel at every corner on a stalk’ look of the Nils, Audi and Twizy, although Vauxhall have covered their front wheels with bodywork.
Vauxhall are claiming the electric concept will be ‘be agile and fun to drive’ and that it will ‘revolutionise urban transport, especially for younger drivers and those on a very tight budget’. Which seems a bit counter intuitive.
Unless Vauxhall has pulled-off some master-stroke of cost cutting on the electric gubbins, we don’t see how it can come in at less that the Renault Twizy, which we know will cost £7k – and another £40 a month for battery lease.
Throw in the fact that something this small would inevitably mean it being more vulnerable in a crash, the fact that it weighs just a third of a proper car and so should be relatively nippy, and the likelihood of cheap insurance – the biggest cost factor in motoring for the young – disappears down the plug-hole.
Still, it’s good to see car makers thinking outside the box.
Even though they’re all ending up in the same new box.
Vauxhall Electric Urban Concept Photo Gallery
(3 photos – click thumbnail for full size)