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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Everyone

Firstly a quick thank you for all the information and tips on this forum. This site is a great UK resource for anyone thinking of moving to the concept of vehicles powered by electricity.

I am thinking about looking at a Vauxhall Ampera, but am wondering about a couple of issues which hopefully current owners will be able to help me with. The first is noise, not so much during electric operation but more so under petrol power. My journey to / from work takes me onto the A1 and M25, and I am wondering if I will notice wind and / or road noise. I have been unable to find any db ratings which would indicate cabin noise levels and so would be grateful for comments on any real world experiences.

My second query concerns wing mirrors, which I note are not electrically operated. There is not much room in many car parks, especially supermarkets, and I wondered if anyone has noted any inconvenience with the fixed wing mirrors or suffered any damage?
 

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Good morning Alan,

Ross, here on the other side of the Atlantic.

A quick answer to your second question. The wing mirrors are electrically operated. They also have a swing away feature should you hit them getting to close to a fixed object. They do stick out so this can happen.

I will try to get back to you on the other data you seek.

If you can your best option to solve many questions on the Ampera is to take one for a test drive.
 

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Alan,

The wind and road noise is no more than any other car, probably less due to the smoother aerodynamics, but because the car is otherwise so quiet you do notice it more than in non-electric cars.

When running on the ICE it is mostly pretty quiet but occasionally the engine races when you are not accelerating. A bit odd, especially at traffic lights, but it only lasts a few seconds.

The wing mirrors do adjust electrically but (at least on my Volt) they do not electically fold. The car is surprisingly wide and I have clipped them a couple of times but without any damage.

Andy.
 

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The same on the Ampera... the mirror adjusts electrically but do not fold electrically. They can be folded in manually by had which is what I normally do in car parks.

The noise when running on petrol is pretty quiet. At motorway speeds I generally don't notice it at all but as has been mentioned already, at lower speeds occasionally the engine revs a little higher than your speed might suggest as the engine in not connected to the wheels. This has never been an issue for us as the general noise level is pretty low but it is that disconnect between the wheels and the engine that can sound a bit strange when you first own one. You soon get used to it and then I'd say the noise is geenrally lower than an ICE for the most part.

What do others think?
 

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Door mirrors are not a problem. As said above they can be folded if you park in a vunlerable spot.

I think you will be very impressed at the low levels of noise under all operating conditions once you take a test drive, which I'd wholeheartedly recommend.

Big Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks everyone. I meant wing mirror folding, not operational adjustment, which is pretty much standard on other vehicles. Indeed I noticed a recent post on the GM Volt forum where someone has spotted that the US handbook actually refers to folding wing mirrors, suggesting GM were hoping to include this but I guess needed to keep the price down.

I think a test drive is what I need. Many thanks for your comments and quick responses.

Happydays.
 

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Alan, I would suggest that you contact Vauxhall and ask for a three day test drive and see what you think. I had one a couple of months ago and it made up my mind to buy one. That is once the kitchen, bathroom, living room and front garden have all been refurbished according to my other half that is..
 

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Hi Alan

My UK Ampera handbook also refers to electrically folding door mirrors but this is not even an option. Also the handbook also refers to automatic dipping rearview mirror, again this is not available even as an option.

Ian
 

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The auto-dipping rear view mirror is on the USA Volt I believe... it didn't make it onto the UK Ampera.

There are many signs of cost-cutting such as that... combined with the price hike at launch from the touted £28k to at launch £35k (after the grant) for the Electron I nearly didn't buy one. In fact, I took myself off the waiting list in anger. Once it was launched I had a change of heart and I am glad I did in spite of the niggles. I still think it is over-priced but I put that down to the government grant which has allowed Vauxhall to up the price by £5k! Just my opinion!!!
 

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I looked at the Ampera but Vauxhall couldn't offer me a deal that suited me and the front end design put me off. Then I looked at the Chevy Volt, same interior and running gear, preferred the look and had the optional polished wheels, oh yes and cheaper. The Edinburgh Chevy dealer sorted me a deal that I was satisfied with and the car is brilliant. My best mileage on a charge so far is 42 miles but as the terrain up here is far from flat I am very pleased with it. The only problem with Chevy is the lack of dealers who sell and maintain them.

Mick
 

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In terms of noise and on a fairly smooth piece of dual carriage way I have measured 64.8db @ 70 mph....... This compares to 63.5db @70mph for my 2009 300c.....now I personally think most of this noise is from the Rock hard eco tyres that are fitted as standard........ I honestly think that when I change to the 18" alloys with Goodyear efficient grips the cabin noise will be better than the big 300.

I've only had mine a few weeks and absolutely love it!!!!

Just get one...... Get one now!!!

:)
 

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Just get one...... Get one now!!!
LOL Damienedwards - You are so right!

After driving an Ampera for 18 months there is no way I'd go back to an ICE! I just wish I could afford a Tesla Model S when they come to the UK - had a ride in one while in the USA last and that is even more awesome :)
 
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