Vauxhall Plans to Introduce Affordable Entry-Level Electric Car

Automotive brand MAJOR intends to launch an affordable "entry-level electric car" to counter the rising prices of electric vehicles for customers.

According to the head of its parent brand Opel, the new Vauxhall development will cost around £22,000.

Vauxhall aims to develop an entry-level city car that is affordable for buyers.

The new model will be positioned below the Vauxhall Corsa Electric, which is priced at £32,445.

The entry-level electric car is envisioned as a compact urban offering, occupying a similar space to the Vauxhall Adam and Viva models.

As a result, this entry-level electric car will become a direct competitor to future models like the Renault 5 and Kia EV2.

Florian Huettl, CEO of Opel, Vauxhall's parent brand, stated that an entry-level city car is "possible" because "there is room for a smaller car in [the new] lineup." However, Auto Car reports that he did not confirm whether such a car has been designed.

Huettl hinted that the development of new energy-dense batteries will be key to creating the Vauxhall city car. He claims this will reduce production costs, increase interior space, and reduce the car's weight.

Reducing the overall size of the battery packs will also allow small electric cars to achieve a range similar to that of existing larger models while maintaining compactness and a low price.

"That's the target," Huettl added. "Our target for the next generation is €25,000 (£21,663) [for an electric car]."

He also added that cheaper electric cars are becoming a "big draw" in the automotive world, especially for buyers, and the brand needs to respond to this.

If Vauxhall plans to create an affordable entry-level electric car, there are several options they can use for its development.

Stellantis, the parent company, has a range of platforms, including the upcoming STLA Small architecture, which will replace the E-CMP platform used in the current Corsa Electric and Peugeot e-208.

The STLA Small architecture is designed for vehicles from the A-segment to the C-segment with battery capacities ranging from 37 to 82 kWh. This will also allow for a range of engines and output power starting at around 94 hp, which is ideal for a small city car.

Figures released by Stellantis show that the platform can accommodate cars up to 3600 mm in length and 1700 mm in width.

Vauxhall could also adopt the Smart Car platform from its subsidiary Citroen.

Citroen's CEO, Thierry Koskas, has previously hinted that the architecture will be available to other Stellantis brands. It can also be used in subcompact supermini-sized cars.

"It is expected that in the future, the Smart Car platform will appear in other Citroen cars, and perhaps in other brands," he said. "This is a platform that will receive different cars because it is a very promising platform on which we can do a lot – not just B-segment hatchbacks."

However, initially, Vauxhall will not attempt to match the discussed price of €20,000 (£17,337) for future electric cars like the Volkswagen ID.1.

Huettl said, "The target of €20,000, I think, is unattainable. The cost of materials is too high."