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Discussion Starter #1
The Vauxhall Ampera is a good car... no, IMO it is a great car in so many ways... but we have had ours over 2 years now and for some reason I have not gelled with it. Couple that with the fact that we gave up a Land Rover Freelander to get it and perhaps it is not too surprising that I see the Mitsubishi Outlander and I want one!

So, I am seriously considering a change... selling the Ampera and buying an Outlander.

The word "mad" comes to mind but that is OK... I have had that said about me many times. I don't mind. I see that life if for living and we all make our own choices and as long as we are happy with the choices we make then who is to say we are wrong :)

So, we are hoping to get to see the dealer on Thursday and perhaps set up an all-day test drive.

Anyone want a 2012 Ampera, 22k miles... never raced or rallied :)
 

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I am waiting to see Nikki's review after her week with the Outlander PHEV; I'm interested.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Will you be able to cope with the reduced electric range?
Yes I believe so because we rarely use the Ampera as an EV beyond the range of Plymouth (5 miles) but we could do that several times a day so with regular charging at home that will be fine.

I am curious to what the actual mpg figures are when running on petrol (i.e. after the battery is empty). The Ampera returns about 48mpg at normal motorway speeds. I would expect the Mitsu to be slightly worse but not by much.
 

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Yes I believe so because we rarely use the Ampera as an EV beyond the range of Plymouth (5 miles) but we could do that several times a day so with regular charging at home that will be fine.

I am curious to what the actual mpg figures are when running on petrol (i.e. after the battery is empty). The Ampera returns about 48mpg at normal motorway speeds. I would expect the Mitsu to be slightly worse but not by much.
With rapid charging on a long journey (we all have to pee) you could actually get more electric range.:)
 

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Im not 100% familiar with how the Ampera works but the Outlander doesn't just run either electric or petrol. I had a day test drive, ran it 95% electric for the first 29 miles or so... rapid charged it back up then ran it as I would doing a long trip, it seamlessly switched from electric to hybrid and back, the petrol engine kicking in on ascents and cutting out on descents, back in when I was accellarating, and so on (Never driven the Ampera so dont know if its the same). I did just over 120 miles like that and there was still a tiny bit of battery left... the screen showed an average of 82 mpg for that journey. And I wasnt taking it easy.

I loved it.... for me its a game changer for EV's / Hybrids due to it's size and affordability.

Go for it!
 

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Funny that. I tried the i3 Rex, the Outlander and the Ampera. Loved the BMW (especially the acceleration) and that would have been my first choice. But given the price, that will have to be my next car, once they are available pre owned. I wasn't that impressed with the outlander as it just didn't have enough 'poke' for me. So far I'm loving the Ampera. I have it in Normal most of the time and it's a very relaxing drive. But it's nice to have the zippy sport mode when range isn't an issue and you want to get away from the lights. Why haven't you gel-ed?

Be interested to get your take on it though if you go for it.
 

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I found the Outlander painfully slow on take off, compared to my Leaf. Better at high speeds though. Only 16A AC charging would be a nuisance too. It does have Chademo, of course, but with the increasing useage of the rapid chargers and only 25 miles real world EV range, I probably wouldn't bother topping up. My initial test revealed a petrol only mpg of 30ish in normal driving, but by hypermiling I almost made 50mpg. The remote control of aircon is rendered practically useless by having to pair with car's own wifi - crazy idea! Couldn't get the Bluetooth to work properly displaying music track titles either.

Drives nicely, can tow and sensibly priced.

Good luck on your test drive Paul.

Nigel
 

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...Drives nicely, can tow and sensibly priced.
Nigel
My thoughts exactly, as a caravanner, but recent "Tow Car of the Year" tests showed that the Outlander struggled to restart on a 1:6 gradient with an 800kg trailer attached, which is a disappointment to those of us who pull 1200 - 1500kgs.

Hence my opting to retain my Passat and use a Leaf for most day-to-day motoring...best of both worlds for my needs :D
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all the comments.

It would be different for sure. The Ampera does drive on all electric except when being really pushed. When it is out of battery it isn't really. It just means the battery has hit the minimum allowed. The petrol then kicks in and out to maintain that minimum battery level. It is very clever. MOUNTAIN mode simply raises the minimum battery level to 40% and then the petrol kicks in and out to maintain 40%. No different to when "empty".

From what you have said it sounds like the Outlander is more like the Prius where it uses battery at low speed and a combination at higher speeds. Does that sound right?

I think the CHAdeMO for me would mean I do much more EV miles. On long trips right now I never charge. 16A charging on a long trip just isn't viable so I don't. I would not use the Outlander like a BEV... hopping from one rapid to the next... but everyone has to stop and so when I do if I stop where there is a rapid it then I will charge. I could certainly see myself charging at least once or twice on most long trips and that is once or twice more than I would do in the Ampera.

The lower petrol MPG figure would to some degree be compensated by the additional charging. I think it would be difficult to determine which is better overall as that would depend on individual use, how often you stop to charge etc. But for us I am pretty certain from gut-feel that on most trips overall I whould use less petrol in the Outlander.

I would miss the performance of the Ampera for sure but I have a Leaf which for me is the nicer car to drive so I'll get my EV "away from the lights" fun with that :D

We won't be towing as our caravan is 1800kg but it does give us an option to downsize if we want. Did the "Tow Car of the Year" test use a diesel Outlander or the PHEV because the I would expect the torque of the electric motor to perform much better on hills than the straight diesel. It will be good to see a two test of the PHEV Outlander.

Good stuff :)
 

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The Ampera does drive on all electric except when being really pushed.
Can you explain that?!

I have never had my Ampera run on anything but electric EVEN when being REALLY pushed. in Electric mode the car is FULLY electric full stop.

Only the [Hold] or [Charge Sustaining] modes use the engine, (cold weather settings can also instigate temporary hold mode.) at no point does "pushing" the car cause the engine to kick in..



I came to this thread to say it may be worth waiting a month or so to see if ELR comes to europe? discounting of Ampera suggests clearing stock for something new...but maybe you don't want another GM..
 
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Did the "Tow Car of the Year" test use a diesel Outlander or the PHEV
It was the PHEV, I was just reading that article at the weekend (my bro has just bought a caravan so had the magazine in his house). They didn't rate it too highly so I wouldn't be choosing it if I had a lot of towing to do. Mind you, it's probably the best EV option for that isn't it?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Can you explain that?!

I have never had my Ampera run on anything but electric EVEN when being REALLY pushed. in Electric mode the car is FULLY electric full stop.
Well I have always believed the blurb from Vauxhall/Chevrolet on this and that is what they say. However, it is open to interpretation and your experience suggested that I might have misinterpreted... so I have just gone out and done a test.

You are right... I could not get the ICE to kick in ant any speed (aaahm! Don't ask ;) ). So I have to defer to you on this... the Ampera when it has battery power is only an EV in Normal and Sport modes.

However, I did try some other tests... if I went into Hold mode and let the ICE start then things are more as I describe... that is to say that the ICE provides the power but if you push it then it takes power from both the ICE and battery but whether the 3rd clutch is engaged and the mechanical power is being used I do not know.

So not a complete answer but it does confirm that when the battery is above the zero it is an EV only car.

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
It was the PHEV, I was just reading that article at the weekend (my bro has just bought a caravan so had the magazine in his house). They didn't rate it too highly so I wouldn't be choosing it if I had a lot of towing to do. Mind you, it's probably the best EV option for that isn't it?
Fair enough... I try to avoid 1 in 6 hills when towing anyway :)
 

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Paul, have you looked at the Lexus RX hybrid? If you're thinking of using the Outlander for longer trips then the better economy of the RX compared to the petrol mode of the Outlander might make your TCO lower, and maybe burn less dino juice too?
 

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Well the Outlander is only available new, the RX you can buy second hand. Aware it doesn't have a plug (and if that's your main reason for buying, I understand!) but it would probably be cheaper to own and potentially burn less petrol in your use case.

Also, the Lexus NX300h will be out soonish, with even better mpg (GS300h is rated at 60.1MPG combined to give you an idea) and the option to tow from £31,495
 
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