The Opel Ampera may be very similar to the Chevy Volt under the skin, but a lot of people in the U.S. would argue that the Euro-plug-in's skin is far more attractive. Apparently a lot of Europeans agree.

First year production for the Ampera had been targeted for 8,000 units, but high demand has caused that number to be moved up. Already, GM is reporting more than 6,000 paid reservations (which, granted, is only 150 Euros, which is $212 U.S. at today's exchange rates). The number of 2012 Amperas is now expected to be between 10,000 and 15,000. Apparently, GM has learned from its difficulties in getting up to speed with production of the Volt, as the company says it expects to be able to meet this increased target without a problem.

The Ampera is considered a more up-scale model than the usual Opel and its introduction is being seen as an effort to not just sell a car, but to move the brand. In addition to the Ampera, Opel will also be introducing a new small car, the Opel Junior, which is designed to compete with the Mini Cooper and Fiat 500.