Renault-Nissan alliance dates back all the way to 1999 and ties are stronger by each day. Since Japanese made its unconventional move with Leaf in 2010 which proved more than successful, it was time for French to their bid also. In 2012 the world saw new all-electric car Zoe, which grows up to be Europe’s best-selling electric car, while the world title stayed with Leaf. There is no hard rivaling between the brothers as Leaf is a compact car while Zoe is subcompact one and with that, it carries a lower price tag. As competition never sleeps, so nor French do, and there is something new to be said about 2017 Renault Zoe.
New is the most important thing with electric cars. When Zoe was launched, it featured 22 kWh battery allowing around 100 miles of range, which was decent figure compared to rivaling competition. Time passes, and things are changing at an incredible pace, new Chevy Bolt EV comes with well over 200 miles range, while others as e-Golf are bringing similar numbers.
That made French company do its homework and offer 41 kWh battery last year. New battery promise remarkable 250 miles range officially, although Renault played honestly with estimation of 180 miles real world range during warm days and 120 miles during cold ones. Anyway, a result is good in either case, while giving broader options to buyers as smaller battery stays as a cheaper option.
OUTSIDE AND INSIDE
Nothing is changed besides the introduction of a new battery. Zoe stays funky and trendy little city car, trying to show progressive thinking of its owner and its care about its surroundings. It is a statement of good moral conscience, eager to be presented by many people in today’s times.
The cabin is slightly altered one from Clio, with full digital dash and it’s quite sweet visually. In this case cheaper Clio’s plastic proves ok, as with EV and hybrids we are all used to that. Interestingly boot is bigger than Clio’s, but rear bench space is expectedly smaller due to the stacked batteries, making it more suitable for children.
Under the hood of Zoe lies electric motor producing 88 hp and 225 Nm of torque. It takes it very slowly to 60 mph in painfully long 13.5 seconds, but still, it’s an EV, and it’s a city car, and that would deem it acceptable. On the plus side, like all electric motors, this one too provides immediate punch when the gas pedal is pressed, and there is no need for hunting the revs as with gas guzzlers.
You should probably stick to the city with it, as it struggles with highway speeds and battery depletes in no time. Clio has never been drivers cars, apart from RS version clearly, and don’t expect Zoe to be either. The steering wheel is far from sporty, also too light and no information is delivered by it to the driver. On the plus side, the vehicle is composed enough through corners, much better than bigger brother Leaf suffering from a taller stance. Engine noise is not an issue obviously, but wind noise is.
The minimum price for Zoe is quite attractive £14,000 in the UK, but that doesn’t include a battery. You have the option of buying the whole car with the battery in package or you can just lease the battery. In case that you opt for renting of battery, there is a monthly charge of £49 or £59 for bigger battery with certain limitations. If you go for top choice, Signature Nav model asks for £20k as a start, while price with battery is around £5k more, which might prove excessive for just a little city car.
2017 Renault Zoe stays one of the most desirable electric vehicles. It is perky looking, ideal for city and price is more than alluring. New battery makes it well equipped against leading competition and is in front of many rivals. It is one of the most reasonable choices in EV world, while not lacking in character.
2017 Renault Zoe Video