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2020 Renault Megane eVision

2020 Renault Megane eVision

Renault details plans about its future EVs with the eVision prototype

Renault is outlining its EV mobility plan with a sleek-looking concept called eVision which heralds the use of a new battery pack, “one of the thinnest on the market.” The production model derived from the concept will sit on the CMF-EV platform, but it’ll take at least one year before we see it in the metal.

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2020 Renault MORPHOZ concept

2020 Renault MORPHOZ concept

The Morphoz Concept represents a future where cars transform and what’s yours isn’t always yours

Renault, like all other automakers, were forced to skip the Geneva Motor Show, but that sure didn’t stop it from unveiling what will probably be written in history as the weirdest futuristic concept of 2020. The Morphoz is, essentially, a vehicle that can transform based on range need, from a shorter, city car to a longer travel car. It sounds like the Morphoz will be a city car by default and would require you to stop by a station and swap to a larger battery if you plan to take a longer trip. The batteries, whether in the car or not, will be used to power infrastructure when not in use. I tend to speak too soon about a lot of things, but I’m going to come right out and say that this thing will never see production, but it could represent the future of automobiles, so here’s what you need to know about it.

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2018 Renault K-ZE

2018 Renault K-ZE

Is this the electrified future?

Renault is previewing its future mini electric crossover with the K-ZE concept revealed at the 2018 Paris Motor Show. Taking a closer look at the K-ZE, it becomes immediately apparent that it is, in fact, just a dressed up Kwid (which Renault already sells in emerging markets) which has had its internal combustion powertrain swapped out for a full-electric one.

The future electric crossover will look much closer to this concept, than it will to the current Kwid, although it will maintain its basic body shape. What will set it apart visually more significantly are the new, redesigned front and rear fascias, as well as various details around the exterior. It also promises to offer “class leading” range for a vehicle in its size-bracket.

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2018 Renault EZ-GO

2018 Renault EZ-GO

All-electric, fully autonomous, and extra chic

Renault has been big on the whole EV self-driver thing for the past few years now, pulling the sheets on several SYMBIOZ concepts back in 2017. The EZ-GO is the latest follow-up, offering the same drivetrain and autonomous tech as before, but with an extra dash of shared mobility services and connected features to boot. The result is a vision of the future of urban mobility, promising improvements to both energy efficiency and quality of life.

Continue reading to learn more about the Renault EZ-GO.

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2017 Renault Zoe

2017 Renault Zoe

A new battery adds significantly more miles to the car’s range

The Renault Zoe came to be in 2012, as part of the company’s Z.E. electric car initiative that also includes the Twizy city car and the Kangoo Z.E. compact panel van. Originally launched with a 22 kWh battery that returned a 93-mile range, the Zoe received a second battery good for 150 miles in 2015. At the 2016 Paris Motor Show, Renault announced the introduction of a brand-new battery for the Zoe. Boasting 41 kWh of useful energy, the new stack returns an NEDC driving range of 250 miles and a real-world range of up to 186 miles.

Set to go on sale in 2017, the updated Zoe will hit the streets in the same form as the original hatchback. Aside from the new battery and upgraded infotainment apps, the Zoe will carry over unchanged inside and out. However, the new battery makes it the most capable, affordable electric car on the market, at least until the Opel Ampera-e lands in showrooms.

The updated electric arrived just as Renault sold its 100,000th Zoe, an impressive achievement in this market. Although not as popular as the Leaf, which sold more than 230,000 units globally as of 2016 (note that the Leaf is also offered in the U.S.), the Zoe is the best-selling hybrid in France and a notable competitor for the Nissan in Germany, the United Kingdom, and Norway.

Will the more powerful battery make a difference and boost Zoe sales in Europe? Let’s have a closer look at the numbers before we draw a conclusion.

Continue reading to learn more about the Renault Zoe.

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2014 Spark-Renault SRT 01E Formula E Race Car

2014 Spark-Renault SRT 01E Formula E Race Car

"Next year will be a landmark year in the history of motorsports racing."

We’ve heard that sentence uttered far too many times each year and more often than not, we attribute it to nothing more than hyperbole.

But 2014 will be a landmark year in the history of motorsports racing with the introduction of the FIA Formula-E Championship, a one-make, single-seat racing series that will be competed by electrically powered race cars.

In time for its highly anticipated debut, Spark Racing Technology is using the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show to introduce the Spark-Renault SRT_01E Formula E race car.

The race car is expected be one of the most prominent racers in the series. It looks like any modern single-seat race car, but other than its aesthetics, a whole load of features about the Spark-Renault SRT_01E Formula E race car distinguishes itself from the likes of those Formula One racers.

For one, the SRT_01E will be build using a Dallara-designed monocoque chassis made out of carbon fiber and aluminum. But more importantly - and something that will be unique to the race car - the SRT_01E will be powered by a McLaren-sourced electric engine that’s capable of producing up to 270 horsepower, although that output will only be limited to 180 horsepower during races. It’s not as powerful as those F1 cars, but what do you expect with an electric engine.

Despite the lack of horses, the SRT_01E is still expected to be really quick off the block, capable of hitting 60 mph in just 3 seconds to go with an FIA-limited top speed of 140 mph.

Updated 04/30/2014: Ho-Pin Tung – the first Chinese driver to ever test a Formula 1 car - was invited to drive the new SRT_01E and apparently he was very impressed. Check out the video to see for yourself.

Click past the jump to read more about Formula-E

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2013 Renault Twizy F1 Concept

2013 Renault Twizy F1 Concept

The other day, Renault teased a new electric concept car and we were expecting to see something big - something at least similar to the Alpine A110-50 Concept. Unfortunately, the new concept is quite disappointing, at least aesthetically.

The new Twizy F1 Concept has been developed on a single-seat racecar platform and, according to Renault, it is "a bridge between the world of F1 technology and that of production cars." The problem is that along with the technology, Renault Sport also decided to use some F1-inspired design elements that are just a little too much for the super-compact Twizy.

While the look is something questionable, what lies under the hood makes us completely forget about how wrong things went to Renault design laboratory this time. The technology behind the concept was developed by engineers from both Renaultsport and their colleagues at Renault Sport F1 and it is essentially the same as the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) used in the Renault Formula 1 cars.

UPDATE 05/17/13: If you thought that the Renault Twizy F1 Concept is just that, a concept, well, think again. Click past the jump to see how this little concept can throw down!

Click past the jump to read more about the new Renault Twizy F1 Concept.

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2013 Renault ZOE

2013 Renault ZOE

Over the years, we have seen the Renault ZOE make its way into various car shows as a concept car, but nothing ever really came of it. Here we are approaching the 2013 model year and finally, Renault is announcing that it is releasing its first production bespoke EV car in the form of the oft-teased ZOE. Sure, it’s no Ferrari or Lamborghini, or even a Tesla for that matter, but it is progress toward removing ourselves from exhaustible oil.

It is rather surprising to see electric vehicles taking their sweet time developing in European market, as those countries have been hit the hardest and longest with inflated gasoline prices. European buyers and automakers have been relying more on building high-efficiency diesel and gasoline engines, while us folks in the U.S. have focused more on the EV and hybrid routes.

The real question here is can the Renault ZOE make enough of an impact to pull buyers away from these ultra-economical petrol and diesel models? And can the ZOE help start the domino effect that the Prius did here all those years ago?

Click past the jump to read all about the Renault Zoe and get answers to these questions.

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2010 Renault DeZir

2010 Renault DeZir

Let’s face it, Renault is a brand consisting of family cars, and besides the new Gordini models, there is nothing in the line-up that inspires sportiness. But the new DeZir concept that was unveiled at the Paris Auto Show seemed to be the exception to that rule. The concept is the first work of Renault’s new chief designer, Laurent van den Acker, and represents a mid-engined, gullwing electric coupe.

The new DeZir concept features a new front-end design that previews the new front-end identity of the next Renault models. The headlights take the form of backlit prisms and the perforated ’eyelids’ add to this high-tech feel and contribute to DeZir’s specific lighting signature. Rear lighting is provided by an illuminated, seemingly floating strip and the Renault logo is highlighted by backlighting through the fins of the grille and consequently appears to hover in the middle of this space.

DeZir is powered by an electric motor mounted in a mid-rear position to optimize weight distribution over the front and rear wheels. The vertically-mounted 24kW/h lithium-ion battery is located behind the benchseat and provides the car with a range of 160km. The new concept can sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in five seconds, and from 0 to 50 km/h (31 mph) in just two seconds.

UPDATE 10/29/2010: Renault is considering offering a production version of their Dezir electric concept car unveiled at the Paris Motor Show. During a recent test drive of the concept, Renault announced that building the car will not be such a complicated job: there already is an appropriate platform (that of the Mégane Trophy), production of the electric drive technology is almost ready and there is the Renault sport division’s experience in building cars in a limited edition. In addition to this production vehicle, Renault also announced that a spider version or a race version may also be a possibility.

Press release after the jump.

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2010 Renault Zoe Preview

2010 Renault Zoe Preview

At the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show Renault brought the Zoe ZE concept. At this year’s Paris Auto Show the company brings the Zoe Preview, a second version of the electric Zoe, that get a little bit closer to the production car.

The Zoe Preview is powered by an electric motor that delivers 80 HP and 222 NM of torque. The Z.E. would be charged at home or at a publically-accessible charging point. A full charge will take between 3.5 and 8 hours. In emergency, when the customer needs to charge the battery quickly, they can connect via a public fast charge point. This will give 37 miles range in less than 10 minutes or 80% battery capacity in 30 minutes.

The Zoe Preview will be offered with a few equipment package geared to ensuring the wellbeing of its occupants: skin hydration that adjusts the humidity level inside the car to optimize the comfort of its occupants, Detox effect and stimulating or relaxing scent diffuser.

Press release after the jump.

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2011 Renault Fluence Z.E.

2011 Renault Fluence Z.E.

The last vehicle Renault unveiled was the Fluence Z.E. Concept at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show, but today the French company has finally brought us the final design of the production ready model for us to mull over. Production will begin in the first half of 2011.

The Fluence Z.E. is an entirely electric vehicle powered by a synchronous electric motor with rotor coil that delivers a total of 93 HP 11,000rpm, while maximum torque is 226Nm. The electric motor is recharged using a lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 22kW/h.

The sedan’s design is defined by taut and fluid lines with the Renault logo, foglamp surrounds, and headlamp brows. The design extend to the lower part of the headlamp mask which is painted in a blue-hued color. The Renault Fluence Z.E.’s interior is based on the same layout as the internal combustion-engined version. Only the rev-counter has been replaced by a bespoke instrument panel which displays data concerning the remaining range and battery charge. The decorative trim of the uncluttered dashboard is picked out in a color that is exclusive to the model, while the center console includes the displays "forward", "reverse", "neutral" and "parking" which are the different positions for the transmission control lever.

All-electric cars are coming out of the woodwork, so it really isn’t an ingenius idea to come out with a production model for the Fluence Z.E. We can bet that Renault is kicking themselves for not putting it into production earlier, but they could have been waiting for someone like Daimler to come along. The Daimler/Renault alliance was just announced on April 7, 2010.

Press release after the jump.

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2010 Renault ZOE Z.E Concept

2010 Renault ZOE Z.E Concept

Renault revealed today the ZOE Z.E concept electric car - a preview of the Renault production vehicle set for launch in 2012. The Zoe Z.E. is a 100% electric, zero-emission city car.

The car can be fast recharged in 20 minutes, while a standard charge takes between 4 to 8 hours. The concept features an exclusive "Quickdrop" system that allows an empty battery pack to be swapped with a fully-charged pack in a matter of minutes.

The roof has been designed as an intelligent protective membrane that insulates against heat and cold, optimizes climate control, and recovers energy using honeycomb photovoltaic cells. The car features a
shield of polyurethane gel at the front and the back, acting as a second skin that protects vulnerable parts of the body in the event of mild urban impact.

Press release after the jump.

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2010 Renault Kangoo Z.E. Concept

2010 Renault Kangoo Z.E. Concept

The French automaker Renault has just unveiled the the Kangoo Z.E. Concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the third of Renault’s four electric vehicles that accoding to the company will go into production by 2011, and the the Kangoo Z.E. Concept is the one intended for everyday use.

The concept is powered by a 70 kilowatt motor delivering a maximum of 226 Nm of torque. Power is derived from a lithium-ion battery, that with a full recharge have an autonomy of four to eight hours, while a 20-minute quick charge you can take a short trip around the house.

With a weight of only 1520 kilos, the Kangoo ZE can hit a top speed of 130 km/h.

Press release after the jump.

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2010 Renault Fluence Z.E. Concept

2010 Renault Fluence Z.E. Concept

Renault wants to prove that electric cars don’t have to be boring at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The automaker’s range of four electric concepts revealed today provide a preview of what we can expect from the French car builder to release starting in 2011.

The Fluence Z.E. Concept is a four-door electric sedan that can travel up to 160 kilometers on a single charge. Renault has incorporated a few interesting charging methods including a 20 minute recharge and the very fast 3 minute quick charge options that will allow you to travel from 4 to 8 hours depending on the power outlet’s voltage.

Fluence ZE Concept is powered exclusively by an electric motor located near the front axle that is powered by a lithium-ion battery positioned between the rear seats and the trunk. The concept rides on 21 inch wheels and the interior features video screens and a triple-zone climate control while LED lights on both the front and rear of the vehicle add to the concept’s Atmosphere Blue body color.

Press release after the jump.

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