The situation with the Chevy Bolt EV in Europe, where it is sold as the Opel Ampera E, is becoming increasingly complicated ever since GM sold its European operations to the PSA Group. They have limited supply while demand is through the roof.
It now looks like they are capitalizing on that since they have announced a price hike for the all-electric vehicle.
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Last month, we reported that Opel asked its Norwegian dealers, where demand is the strongest, to stop taking orders for the Ampera E as supply can’t match demand.
They claimed that almost 5,000 people have placed orders at that time.
Dealers are now putting interested buyers on a list, but they are not signing contracts – though it now looks like those contracts don’t mean much because reports are coming out that the new price hike even applies to those with contracts.
Local newspaper Dinside reports:
“The price of Opel Ampera-e increased by a total of NOK 45,000 – also for those customers who have already signed a contract, the industry site reports bilnytt.no Monday.”
That’s roughly a ~$5,500 USD increase on the agreed upon price and it’s on top of an across the board price increase for the 2018 version of the all-electric, which is what those buyers will get since 2017 inventory is already sold out.
It represents roughly a price increase from NOK 289,900 (~$35,500 USD) to NOK 349,900 (~$43,000) since the launch of the Ampera E in Norway.
The vehicle is now about $5,o00 USD more expensive than in the US before accounting for any incentives.
We have asked Opel for a comment on the price increase and we will report back if we get an answer.
Update: a Opel spokesperson told Electrek that “the conditions under which Opel purchases Ampera-e vehicles from General Motors have changed for Opel.”
A spokesperson for Opel Norway, Stein Pettersen, told Dinside that the price hike is actually due to GM:
Pettersen explains that there is little Opel Norway can do to prevent the significant price increase. He says it’s their former Opel owner General Motors (GM), who has now screwed up the price. GM produces Ampera-e at its factory in Detroit, USA. “This is simply the result of GM selling Opel to PSA. Car prices have increased throughout Europe. On Friday they set up the Ampera-e prize with 5,700 euros in the Netherlands, says Pettersen.
We have previously reported on the distribution of the Chevy Bolt EV being strangely limited. Bolt EV inventories increased to several thousand units during the summer in the US and yet supply was limited in Europe where there was (and still is) strong demand for the vehicle.
It’s hard to blame GM here since it’s the first principle of supply and demand, but it’s more difficult to understand why they would even change the price for those who have already signed orders for the car thinking they were buying it for the announced pricing.
We expect to see a lot of cancellation because of this – though Opel is likely to still sell out their supply for the Ampera E until new alternatives on the European market are more broadly available. The new Nissan Leaf and the Tesla Model 3 come to mind.