Renault has officially launched its ZOE electric supermini. The Clio-sized car will go on sale in the UK in June 2013 for a starting price of £18,995, though this figure reduces to £13,995 as it qualifies for a government-funded electric car grant of £5,000.
The Renault Zoe’s purchase price doesn’t include the cost of battery hire. Batteries will cost £70 per month over 36 months or £80 per month over 24 or 12 months, though those figures only apply to drivers doing a maximum of 7,500 miles over that time period. Those wishing to travel further in their Renault Zoe will have to pay more, as the following table illustrates:
|Contract length||up to 7,500 miles||9,000 miles||10,500 miles||12,000 miles|
|36 months and more||70||77||85||93|
The Renault Zoe has a total driving range of 130 miles per charge (NEDC standardised cycle), but Renault openly admits this range is affected by driving style and environmental factors such as the weather. If it’s warmer, it’ll likely go farther, while if it’s colder, you can expect reduced range. The company says the Zoe should be able to cover between 62 and 93 miles in the real world, so expect your mileage to vary.
The Renault Zoe comes with a Renault’s new R-Link system, which includes a TomTom ZE Live navigation system that tells drivers whether the car has enough battery power left to reach its destination, and where local charging points are along the route.
Zoe users should be able to charge pretty much anywhere they like. The car uses a custom Chameleon charger that is compatible with a range of charging sources ranging from household plugs up to industrial-strength 43kW supplies. Using the most powerful sources, the car can be topped up from flat to 80 per cent charge in as little as 30 minutes, though it can take as long as nine hours for a full charge on a 3kW outlet.
Renault says it will provide ‘free’ home charging stations with every Zoe. Using these, customers can expect to be able to charge the car’s battery from flat in 3.5 hours. The car also qualifies for free access to public charging points across the UK.
On the road, the Renault Zoe should prove a relatively enjoyable runabout. It’ll accelerate from 0-62mph in 8.1 seconds and hit a top speed of 84mph. As it runs near silently, there’s potential for it to be somewhat dangerous to jaywalking pedestrians, but Renault has fitted the car with Z.E Voice – an alarm that warns pedestrians to get out of the way.
So, are all bases covered, or are you not quite convinced? Let us know in the comments below.
Expect a full review in the very near future. Until then, have a gander at these photos or head over to your local Renault dealer to register your interest.