Thursday, May 23, 2024

Opel Rocks-e urban microEV closes gap between scooter and small car

A German Automaker Opel has unveiled what it calls the world’s first SUM (Sustainable Urban Mobility) vehicle, which is designed to close the gap between an electric scooter and a small passenger car. The familiar-looking Rocks-e is actually built on the same platform as last year’s Ami model from Citroën. It can already be driven in Germany by young people from 15 years of age with an AM driving license.

The new Opel Rocks-e is a stylish, emission-free small vehicle for two that requires little space in towns. It measures just 2.41 meters long, 1.39 m wide (without exterior mirrors), and weighs only 471 kg, including the battery – this officially classified it as a light motor vehicle. The mini electric car responds to current mobility requirements by offering wind and rain protection.

Rocks-e's doors open in opposite directions.
Rocks-e’s doors open in opposite directions. Credit: Opel

Opel Rocks-e is powered by an electric motor producing just 8 hp (6 kW), which allows it to reach a top speed of up to 45 km/h (28 mph). The 5.5 kWh battery of the Opel Rocks-e offers a range of up to 75 km (47 miles), according to WLTP. The battery can be fully recharged in around 3.5 hours via any standard household socket, and a 3-meter long charging cable is permanently housed in the SUM – simply pulled out of the passenger door when needed. Opel also offers an adapter for charging at a public charging station.

The 14-inch wheels and turning circle of only 7.20-meter make the Rocks-e ideal for the city, overcoming tight corners and fitting into small parking spaces.

A small display in the front shows speed, driving mode, battery charge, range.
A small display in the front shows speed, driving mode, battery charge, range. Credit: Opel

Inside, the two seats are offset to each other so that the front passenger has comfortable legroom and the driver can move their seat lengthwise. Despite being extremely small in size, it can accommodate people more than 1.90 m tall. The Rocks-e also offers a luggage volume of up to 63 liters in the passenger footwell, plus a smart hook for an XXL-size shopping bag. The interior is provided with the standard panoramic glass roof that promises good all-around visibility. A small display in the front shows speed, driving mode (Drive, Neutral, Reverse), battery state of charge, remaining range, and mileage at a glance.

The doors on both sides are identical, which enhances its bold and pure look. The passenger door swings forward as usual, while the driver’s door swings backward in the opposite direction. Besides, the electric minicar features the new Opel Vizor brand face, including LED headlights and indicators.

It reaches 45 km/h and has a range of 75 km per charge.
It reaches 45 km/h and has a range of 75 km per charge. Credit: Opel

The Rocks-e is available in three distinctive equipment lines: Opel Rocks-e, Opel Rocks-e “Klub” and Opel Rocks-e “Tekno.” The company hasn’t revealed more detailed specs and pricing. But it says the “entry-level price for the new Opel Rocks-e in Germany will be clearly less than for a small car, and the monthly leasing cost will be similar to that of a ticket for local public transportation.” The battery-electric SUM vehicle will be available to order online or directly to the selected Opel dealers from autumn onwards in Germany. Additional European markets are planned to follow in 2022.