Revised Renault Zoe promises greater electric zip
Revamped interior is the most noticeable change
The new Renault Zoe has a significantly redesigned platform that houses a larger 52kWh rechargeable battery pack
The Renault Zoe, Europe’s best selling electric car accounts for almost one in five EV sales. The new third generation Zoe car changes little on the outside but inside the cabin and underneath the bonnet there are significant improvements.
The body shell remains untouched with only token styling changes to freshen up the car from the outgoing model. New elements include: LED headlights and LED taillights as standard, a new grille featuring a more prominent version of Renault lozenge logo that covers the new electric charge port. The restyled front bumper is the most obvious identifier and fog lights feature for the first time.
All change inside
Inside there is a radical overhaul. The Zoe says goodbye its budget interior as it steps upmarket with a whole new layout. Highlights include a new multi function steering wheel, a really nice automatic gear selector, electronic parking brake, new tactile buttons mounted below an impressive 9.3 inch centre touch screen (or 7 inch on lower grades).
A new 10 inch digital display is standard for the driver. Combined, the changes are very impressive for the class. The dash surfacing is vastly improved and soft touch materials and recyclables are used throughout. Renault has a very clever and environmentally friendly fabric made from its in house ‘welthy’ patent pending thread made from recycled plastic (PET) and seat belt waste. Leather is available but so to are other man made materials that are vegan friendly.
The new Zoe has a significantly redesigned platform that houses a larger 52kWh rechargeable battery pack. This pack increases Zoe’s range on a full charge beyond the present 300km to 390km WLTP. Under the bonnet there is a more powerful motor too with an additional 20KWs of power. The new 100KW motor (135hp) in the Zoe R135. Livelier performance is expected with a a top speed of 140km/h and an 80-120 km/h time of just two seconds.
It gets a suspension revision as well with new dampers and the outgoing car’s rear drum brakes are replaced with discs to cope with the improved performance. The automatic gearbox gets an additional B driving mode. This allows near one-pedal driving and is particularly useful on long descents to reduce the amount of friction braking used.
The new combined charging system sees a DC socket added to the existing AC one. In simple terms the new Zoe gains greater flexibility to quick charge with up to 150km of range attainable from 30 minutes charging at a 50kW DC charger. The larger battery pack will charge fully from empty overnight on a home charge point in 9h 25m on a 7kW AC wallbox. A two hour charge at public 11kW AC charger will deliver 125km of range while a one hour charge at a 22kW AC public charger will deliver the same.
There is no pricing for the new Zoe as yet but its success has been set by a current price range of €20,000-€25,000 net of grants.