The Chevy Volt is a decent enough looking car, and it really does have quite a nice interior. But if you’re anything like me, you probably look at the Opel Ampera (pictured) and feel like we in North America got the short end of the design stick. The cars are mechanically identical, but the Chevy design is far more restrained, and doesn’t really stir the soul. Fisker has shown us that a plug-in hybrid can confidently wear a bold and sporty exterior design, and it seems that the guys at Chevrolet are now wishing they had pushed the Volt a bit further.
In a conversation with Autoblog Green, Chevrolet’s Director of Exterior Design, John Cafaro, revealed that Chevy’s design department really liked what Opel had done to make the car look more aggressive. On the subject of the next generation of the Volt, he said “We’re going to do some things with the Volt down the road, make it a little more monochromatic, a little more road-hugging.” But even more importantly, the Volt’s drivetrain will also find its way into other vehicles, with two different Cadillac concepts already appearing with Volt innards. That means there can be several different styling themes to play with, and without one model needing to be whole company’s face for plug-in vehicles, the designs can be more daring.
Cafaro did say that “Ed Welburn is not going to let us do anything weird, I can tell you that,” although what specifically they will be doing is still up in the air. At present, they are still in the brainstorming stage, and they are carefully watching what happens with competing plug-ins. The Volt is actually continuing to sell reasonably well for a plug-in, and they will have to be careful not to change too much and lose that edge. The technology is probably responsible for more Volt sales than the styling is, but it couldn’t be a bad thing to have both working toward more sales.