Which? Car has tried out one of the range of new cars that Renault claims will make motoring far more environmentally friendly.
The French firm is planning to launch four new all-electric models before the end of 2012 as part of its strategy to cut CO2 emissions. These will form the new ZE range – which stands for Zero Emissions.
First up and coming out next year is a ZE version of the Kangoo van. But more interestingly for most drivers, the Fluence family car will be released in 2012, followed by road-going versions of the Twizy coupe and Zoe city car concepts that debuted at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2009.
Renault Fluence ZE test drive video
Take a look at our test drive video of the Fluence ZE.
Prices for the Fluence ZE haven’t yet been announced, but Renault has stated that it aims to sell the new electric models at similar levels to equivalent diesel cars. Buyers will then lease the battery pack, which Renault says will last around eight years. This will be done to improve retained values.
The Fluence will be equipped with two charging sockets, and it will be possible to charge the car to 80% capacity within 20 minutes. Additionally, it has a claimed maximum range of 100 miles. Renault has already signed deals with four groups to improve the UK’s charging infrastructure.
Production of the ZE range will be spread across four European factories.The Kangoo will manufactured in Maubege, northern France, while the final versions of the Twizy and Zoe will be built in Volladolid, Spain and Flins, near Paris, respectively. The Fluence will be made in Bursa, Turkey.
Follow Which? Car on Twitter
The Which? Car team is on Twitter, to offer you help and advice as and when you need it.
We’re monitoring our Twitter account every day, so if you have an account, please send us you thoughts and questions to @whichcar.
Don’t worry if you haven’t got a Twitter account – you can still stay in the loop by regularly checking www.twitter.com/whichcar.