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Review: Life with an Opel Rocks-e – VIDEO

November 12, 2022

Rocks-e on the rise

The Opel Rocks-e, how endearing it looks, doesn’t it? It is, of course, the Opel version of the Citroen Ami. That Ami is not sold in the Netherlands. Opel does make an attempt with its Rocks-e in the Netherlands. And already with some success, as the Rocks-e is on the rise and hundreds have already been sold. After an extensive test with this Vauxhall, we know why. This is just incredible fun.

Moped Scheme

The Opel Rocks-e falls under the moped regulation, so you can buy and drive it as a 16-year-old. A B license is not required. If you have a B-driving license, then such an Opeltje is also very interesting, for example as a grocery car.

From 0 to 100 km/h not applicable

A moped? Yes indeed, the Rocks-e meets all the requirements applicable to such a vehicle. For example, it goes a maximum of 45 mph. You get to that speed in about ten seconds. The dimensions are nice and compact. It is 2.41 meters long, 1.39 meters wide and 1.52 meters high. Street turning? No problem! Turning from curb to curb takes only 7.2 meters.

Weight and power Opel Rocks-e

The Opel Rocks-e weighs 471 kilograms. With that, this vehicle weighs almost as much as the battery pack of a typical Tesla or Polestar. Okay, and how much power does this Vauxhall have? Hold on: on the front axle, Opel mounts an electric motor with 8.2 hp of continuous power and 12 hp of peak power. Only the front wheels are driven.

Range in practice

Those who drive a little efficiently will get 75 kilometers on paper. In winter, of course, it is less so. Then it’s just a matter of driving smart, because during deceleration, the moped also recovers energy. Thus, anyone who anticipates well and allows the Rocks-e to coast in a timely manner continuously recovers energy. In city traffic, you get more range out of the battery. Driving continuously, for extended periods of time at top speed takes a bit more energy, because you are not recovering energy. Still, 60 kilometers is perfectly feasible then.

Charging times

Bummer, the battery is running low. Don’t panic, because recharging can simply be done via a 1.8 kW domestic outlet. From 0 to 80 percent charging takes four hours, full charging 5 hours. Next to the passenger door, a storage compartment stores a three-meter charging cable. Unfortunately, this charging cable does not have a roll-up mechanism like a vacuum cleaner, so it can be a little tricky to put the cable back away at times. On the other hand: just leave the cable where it is and work with an extension cable and the problem is solved. Opel provides an optional adapter to allow the Rocks-e to also be charged at a public charging point.

Back to the basics, if you can accept that then you will feel right at home in the Opel Rocks-e. After all, this little drop on wheels has no air conditioning, no power windows, only two seats, and if you want to listen to music, you pair your smartphone with a rechargeable Bluetooth speaker. Actually quite simple.

Opel Rocks-e

Simple interior

Inside is a smartphone holder and a USB port so you can recharge your smartphone or bluetooth speaker on the go, should the need arise. . Unfortunately, this is still a USB-A port. So for a USB-C cable, you need an adapter or adapter.

Tekno or Klub

Navigate via your smartphone. In fact, your smartphone acts as an infotainment system. If you choose the more luxurious Tekno or Klub, you also get a connect box (bluetooth module). This allows you to connect your smartphone to the Rocks-e. Via the MyOpel app, you then have access to information on remaining range and charging times. In itself, not very exciting.

The only reason to take the Tekno or Klub is that you just get a nicer look. The Tekno in particular stands out nicely with its neon yellow accents on both the inside and outside. The additional cost is not too bad. The Opel Rocks-e starts at 8,499 euros. The Tekno and Klub start at 9,299 euros. You can read a detailed story about the prices here.

Folding windows

Only the driver’s seat is adjustable; the passenger seat is fixed. You have nice folding windows if you get too hot. And in winter just put on an extra thick coat. Still, the interior of the Rocks-e warms up pretty quickly thanks to large windows. Sunlight is then quite effective in warming the interior a bit.

Panoramic roof

This Vauxhall even has a large panoramic roof, making the interior light better than many an Astra. Indeed, the car also feels more spacious than a conventional car. This is due in part to the clever interior layout. The two chairs are as far back as possible. The co-driver sits diagonally behind the driver so that shoulders do not collide.

Limited comfort

The comfort of the seats is, of course, limited for cost reasons, but at no time did we experience any discomfort in our seating, even when the road was bumpy. So you can be quite persistent in the Rocks-e. Salient detail: opening the doors is done with pull loops, as in a Porsche RS model.

Opel Rocks-e is absolute neck-breaker

Unprecedented what a neck-breaker this Opel Rocks-e is. And all responses have been positive. People just don’t really know what it is yet. “A Vauxhall? Oh, I really didn’t expect that”. Yes folks, Opel has also stepped into the world of the moped. Although that term is a bit outdated. It may just be that a vehicle like the Rocks-e is the future. In cities, of course, it is completely ideal, but even outside of that it is a surprisingly good solution for running your errands or traveling to work. So the Rocks-e is a city car, but also a polder car.

Identical on all sides

The production process of this little Vauxhall is what you call nicely efficient. The front and back are identical to each other, as are the sides. At the front are LED headlights; at the rear, Opel mounts brake lights. And because the sides are flush, the door opens on the right side in a normal way, but on the driver’s side like a Rolls-Royce. The only thing missing is an umbrella in the door.

Change your mindset

But what’s that like, driving at 45 mph in an electric mini-Opel? We can be very brief about that: very nice! And also not a punishment at all. Thanks to independent front suspension, it steers surprisingly nicely and the suspension is acceptably hard. Don’t expect a silky smooth chassis, nor can you for this money. The base matches the Rocks-e. Just basic, sufficiently comfortable and not too hard. Nor does the speed feel like a hindrance. You have to change your mindset for a while. In advance, you make an assumption that each ride is going to take considerable time, but in practice it is not very bad. It’s the same as driving on the highway. Anyone driving 100 km/h is hardly later home than someone driving 115 km/h, especially on short distances.

Acceptance phase

Of course we get caught up as we ride in this Rocks-e. Of course, that hideous but unfortunately mandatory 45 km/h sticker on the back reveals that you can’t go as fast as a normal car, but moments later, at a traffic light, we simply rejoin a car that has just overtaken us. So the time savings are minimal. That has to sink in. Once you get through that acceptance phase, every ride in the Rocks-e is enjoyment. Especially since you also really have time to take in the surroundings. You see a lot more. It’s so relaxing. And because the interior feels so roomy, driving this Vauxhall is pleasant pastime.

Buy or lease?

You can simply buy the Opel Rocks-e, but you can also private lease or even finance it. What the differences are in all prices, we explain in another article. We prefer to buy directly, if the financial resources are there. Below the line, it’s simply more economical, although you’ll need to purchase mandatory third-party insurance. You don’t have to pay road tax and there is no such thing as an MOT requirement. For 16-year-olds to cough up 9,299 euros is obviously not entirely realistic, but perhaps parents can play a role in this. Anyway, for more information on all the prices read this comprehensive story.

Conclusion review Opel Rocks-e

Tummy tingling? Well, actually, yes. The Opel Rocks-e has captured the heart. It is a likeable mini-car that everyone loves who sees it driving. It drives incredibly nice, is super capable as a grocery car and seems like the perfect mobility solution for someone who only takes rides around the neighborhood anyway. It gives you the feel of a car. A much more expensive Canta or Biro cannot match that. The Opel Rocks-e ‘s range is acceptable, as are its charging times. Not perfect, of course, but neither can it be for this money. Back to the basics, we wrote before. From that light, this Vauxhall is perfect.