Despite there being dealerships across the UK boasting both Chevrolet and Vauxhall franchises and the two cars being very closely related, the Volt and Ampera will never be sold alongside each other in the same dealership.
That’s the view of Chevrolet UK’s managing director Mark Terry who believes a Chevrolet customer is very different from a Vauxhall one, therefore each has different earnings.
‘Chevrolet and Vauxhall customers are not interested in the same things,’ said Terry. ‘Certainly from our perspective, customers are attracted to Chevrolet because of our heritage, the myth surrounding the brand, and because we’re American.
‘Customers come to a Chevrolet and a Vauxhall dealership for different reasons – they should not have to choose between the Volt and Ampera,’ Terry added.
However, while sales of the two GM extended-range battery cars will be kept separate, dealers can take comfort in the workshop opportunities the two cars present in the future.
Terry said that the Volt’s and Ampera’s extended range electric vehicle technology – called ‘Voltech’ – will allow a specialist E-REV (extended range electric vehicle) Chevrolet dealer to service or work on a Vauxhall Ampera and vice-versa, ensuring added convenience to owners of both cars.
Terry also revealed that if demand for the Volt continues to be strong, Chevrolet will not be able to notify customers of when their cars will be arriving.
Currently when customers order a Volt, they are given an expected delivery date – but if demand continues at pace, the American brand will not be able to be so open with its customers.
‘I am on the phone every month asking for more Volts for our customers, but the factory cannot build them fast enough,’ said Terry. The Volt is produced at the Detroit-Hamtramck plant in Michigan, and 60,000 cars are expected to roll off the production line this year.
‘At the moment we are currently running at 90 per cent retail volume with this car,’ added Terry. ‘That’s because if there’s a customer interested in buying a Volt, we’d much rather speak to them than a fleet company. This will change in the future, though.’