Vauxhall Ampera completes 370 mile trip to Geneva

Powered by a hybrid powertrain, the eco-friendly supermini was able to travel 37 miles from the group headquarters in Russelsheim using just the electric motor, thus producing zero emissions.

The electric motor provided 370Nm of torque and a 0-62mph speed of nine seconds during the drive.

Once the 16kWh lithium-ion battery ran low on power just outside Heidelberg, the petrol engine kicked in to charge an electric generator for the remainder of the journey to Switzerland.

The Ampera was driven over the last leg by Vauxhall CEO Nick Reilly, who described the drive as ‘fun and exhilarating’. He declared the road test a success, and outlined the long-distance capabilities of the new extended-range, electric Ampera.

Reilly explained: "As 80 percent of drivers normally travel less than 60 kilometres per day, it is the exception rather than the rule that they experience the combustion engine in operation. Of course we want to be certain that the Opel/Vauxhall Ampera also runs smoothly during long-distance operation."

After the successful trial, the Vauxhall Ampera is still on schedule to go into production early next year, added Reilly.

The design of the soon-to-be in production Ampera was influenced by the Vauxhall Flextreme and GTC concept cars. The Ampera features boomerang-shaped headlights and an aggressive, low stance.

Once it had arrived at Geneva, the Ampera was charged up once again via a standard household socket, ready for its debut on 3 March.