Vauxhall eCorsa name confirmed for 2020 electric hatchback

Vauxhall Corsa

This development mule for the next Corsa was spotted before PSA took over Vauxhall

Vauxhall and Opel, now owned by PSA Group, will launch their first EV before the end of the decade – a zero-emissions Corsa that shares a platform with other PSA superminis

Vauxhall has confirmed the eCorsa name for the electric version of its next-generation Ford Fiesta rival, which will arrive after the regular version of the upcoming Corsa in 2020.

The all-electric hatchback will sit alongside the recently confirmed Grandland X PHEV, the next Ampera-e and an electrified van in Vauxhall’s growing electrified line-up. These electrified models will play a key role in the PSA Group’s (Vauxhall’s parent company) long-term electrification plans.

The plans state that every Vauxhall model will become available with an electrified powertrain by 2024, with battery electric power for small cars, hybrid and and plug-in hybrid power for larger models. The electrified models will be sold alongside combustion engine alternatives, rather than in a standalone model range.

The next Corsa was originally planned to be underpinned by a structure developed by Vauxhall’s former owner, General Motors, but it will now be built on the same architecture as the next Peugeot 208 and Citroën C3, PSA’s CMP platform. This shift has enabled the eCorsa to use eCMP underpinnings.

This electrified platform will be shared with electric versions of the next 208 and C3. While no details have been given about ranges, rivals such as the Renault Zoe, Nissan Leaf and Hyundai Kona Electric offer between 250 and 292 miles, meaning the PSA models will need to offer similar distances from a single charge in order to be competitive.

Synergies revealed by use of the PSA-derived CMP platforms have helped Vauxhall to halve development costs for the new Corsa. It will be the first Vauxhall (and Opel) car to be built on a PSA platform. PSA ownership will see all GM platforms replaced by PSA ones, slimming nine platforms to just two: CMP and EMP2.

The same will true for engines, which will be slimmed from 10 families to just four. Such is PSA’s commitment towards electrification that its engineers are developing the new powertrains to be compatible with hybrid power from the start, rather than adapting them for it at a later stage. Included is a new 1.6 petrol four-pot, a 1.2 petrol triple and a lightweight 1.5 diesel.

While electrified models still represent a small portion of new cars sales – they have a 5.8% share of the UK new car market – the Corsa is Vauxhall’s biggest-selling car in Britain (it’s currently the fifth best-selling car in Britain), suggesting the electric version could become a significant player in the segment.

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Source: Autocar Online

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