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Europe: New Renault’s electric in-Fluence will be less than Zoe’s

Renault will step up its Electric Vehicle (EV) programme on 1st March when it launches the Fluence Z.E. family car onto the UK market.

However the manufacturer’s UK office admits that the EV it is really waiting for is the Zoe supermini, expected around the end of the year.

Renault won’t state how many EVs it expects to sell but the Zoe will be responsible for half of the total.

The Fluence Z.E. is the second Renault EV to be launched in the UK following the variant of the Kangoo van that arrived late last year. It’s an electric conversion of a four-door car that Renault sells in some markets, the most noticeable difference being a longer rear overhang so as to site the lithium ion batteries behind the seats.

While the official quoted range is 115 miles the car has a real-world range of around 70 to 80 miles before needing recharging. This takes six to eight hours though with an optional cable a three-hour charge will give an extra 25 miles of range.

One major drawback appears to be the lack of a fast charge option. Renault says that this will be offered eventually but cannot confirm whether it will be able to be retro-fitted to the first Fluences on sale.

According to a Renault spokesman at the UK drive event the Fluence is aimed at a certain type of customer; “One that knows they are going to be going between fixed places on their daily commute where the car can be recharged while they are working or at home.”



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