Autos

what is the electric SUV worth in the middle of winter?

An exclusively motorway route at 130 km / h, freezing weather and sustained heating: the context in which we tested the Opel Mokka-e was quite extreme. The electric SUV showed us its great appetite for kilowatt-hours, well hidden behind a family and welcoming look.


The Opel Mokka-e is the sixth vehicle to use the e-CMP platform of the Stellantis group (PSA / Fiat Chrysler). The base is now well known: it is already used by the Peugeot e-208 and e-2008, the Citroën e-C4, the DS3 Crossback e-Tense and the Opel Corsa-e. All these models therefore share the same technology, powered by a 100 kW (136 hp) electric motor for 260 Nm of torque and a nominal 50 kWh battery, of which 46 kWh are useful. If they stand out for their style, level of comfort and performance, one constant unites them: their greed for energy.


Satisfying comfort and aesthetics

Opel’s first electric SUV is no exception. The Mokka-e was particularly energy intensive during our test, admittedly, carried out under unfavorable conditions. The vehicle is nevertheless pleasant, with its style as assertive as it is hospitable. Its two-tone bodywork sets it apart and the aesthetic evolutions of the grille and optics give it a modern look. 4.15 m long, 1.79 m wide and 1.52 m high, the Opel Mokka-e is one of the most compact SUVs.

The interior has a good level of comfort. The tested “ultimate” finish, the highest, gives us very useful heated seats and steering wheels during polar episodes. The atmosphere is sober, without frills, the physical buttons on the console reduced to the essential controls (position selector, driving mode and air conditioning). Placed behind the steering wheel, a large 12-inch on-board screen clearly displays driving information and, finally, relays the percentage of remaining battery. It is completed by a 10-inch infotainment screen placed high up, so you don’t look away from the road.

A functional heat pump in very cold weather

The seat is pleasant on the driver’s side. The space is adequate, even for the imposing builds. We therefore begin our test in excellent conditions of comfort. Initially, in Toussus-le-Noble in the southern suburbs of Paris, the weather was freezing. It is −3 ° C and a strong wind increases the feeling of cold tenfold.

To restore an acceptable temperature in the passenger compartment, we activate the heating. The heat pump system is supposed to heat while limiting energy consumption. If it works well, it lags a few minutes before injecting the saving hot air. Weather requires, it seems to devour the battery faster than expected. In just 11 km driven at low speed, we have already lost 5% of range.

Reliable cruise control

Activating the heated seat and steering wheel immediately improves comfort, probably having little impact on fuel consumption. After a few kilometers of departmental roads, we reach the motorway. First urban limited between 90 and 110 km / h, then granted, where we place the adaptive regulator at 130 km / h. The driving assistance is correctly calibrated. It manages braking and acceleration without jerking or taking risks. The same cannot be said for the lane-keeping tool, which regularly hesitates and ends up capitulating when the driver does not take action.

If the highway is not the most suitable roadway to test the behavior of a vehicle, the Mokka-e has proved reliable on other occasions. Mounted on Michelin Alpin tires, the SUV had no difficulty crossing a small embankment of icy mud. Its handling is satisfactory, even in the bends of rural roads where crackle salt residues, gravel and ice crystals. Until then without apparent defect, the Mokka-e reveals its weaknesses during a stop-recharge on an ultra-fast Ionity station.

Not so fast recharging

After covering 99 km, the stopover allows us to test the DC charging performance of the electric SUV. Opel promises a maximum power of 100 kW, for a 0 to 80% buckle in 30 minutes.

When we arrived at the terminal, the vehicle displayed 32% remaining battery (we left with 90%) and 50 km of autonomy. Not so bad conditions to reach the announced ceiling. However, the Mokka-e starts charging around only 60 kW. The information, which we had to calculate, does not appear on the dashboard. The power then gradually collapsed to an average of 45.5 kW over the entire session (25.7 kWh in 34 minutes). A performance well below our expectations.


A delusional average consumption

We go back to our starting point with 85% battery. The route is identical to the outward journey but the traffic is heavier. At the end of the test, the winter gluttony of the Opel Mokka-e is confirmed: the SUV shows an average consumption of 25.1 kWh / 100 km. It even peaked at 26.9 kWh / 100 km halfway, before traffic jams. We could almost tap the counter, the performance is so surprising.

To better understand the excess, it can be compared to the average consumption of a competing electric SUV such as the Kia e-Niro. In one of our winter highway tests, the vehicle loaded with passengers and their luggage claimed 21.1 kWh / 100 km. A more reasonable figure, especially since the vehicle was not equipped with a heat pump. We therefore remain stunned in the face of the Opel Mokka-e bulimia.


The results of our Opel Mokka-e test

The Opel Mokka-e offers performance that is totally appropriate for everyday use and short weekend trips. The equipment, the level of comfort and the quality of driving offered by the SUV are up to par.

The WLTP range announced at 324 km seems a long way off under the conditions of our test. However, it must be recognized that speed combined with intense cold are naturally not friends of sobriety. Longer motorway trips will have to wait until spring, unless you have to concede a hundred kilometers between each recharge. This does not seem to alarm customers, despite its price which starts all the same at € 36,100 excluding ecological bonus. In Germany, the order book is already full for entry-level finishing. Delivery times remain reasonable in France, currently around 3 months.


    • Driver comfort
    • The large dashboard (on Ultimate finish)
    • The display of the remaining battery percentage
    • The arrangement of the instrumentation
    • The exterior design, modern and assertive
    • The reliability of adaptive cruise control
    • Road holding in winter (on suitable tires)

    • The average fuel consumption in winter on the motorway
    • Fast charging power, much lower than advertised
    • The tool for keeping track, too hesitant.

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