Re­nault Zoe charg­ing into the UK for an elec­tric de­but

Yorkshire Post - Motoring - - NEWS - Carmel Ste­wart

AN ELEC­TRIC car which has a range of 120 miles may be a pipe-dream for some man­u­fac­tur­ers but for Re­nault it is a re­al­ity.

The neat lit­tle five-seater Zoe is ca­pa­ble of just that and pos­si­bly more for those with a steady right foot and well-devel­oped ob­ser­va­tion skills.

It is due into the UK in June at the seem­ingly rea­son­able price of £13,995. It is only seem­ingly rea­son­able be­cause there are one or two add-ons which make it a lit­tle less af­ford­able.

First is the bat­tery which is not bought out­right but leased.

As when buy­ing a car on the never-never, the cost of leas­ing will de­pend upon the pre­dicted mileage per an­num and the length of the con­tract. A three-year deal amounts to £70 per month at the very least.

Travel more than 7,500 miles on an an­nual ba­sis or opt for a shorter con­tract and there’ll not be much change from £100 a month.

This is an in­escapable cost but Re­nault says that hir­ing out the bat­tery means it is read­ily re­place­able.

Then there is the charg­ing box which ev­ery buyer has to have.

For most it will be fit­ted free be­cause, un­like some elec­tric cars, the Zoe re­quires a ded­i­cated charg­ing point. Re­nault has done a deal with Bri­tish Gas which it says 90 per cent of cus­tomers will ben­e­fit from.

The re­main­ing 10 per cent may have to pay for an earth­ing spike or ad­di­tional ca­bling for garages at the bot­tom of the garden for ex­am­ple.

One col­league in a three­year-old house, af­ter the in­evitable cheek suck­ing, was quoted £500 for the spike.

Is a spe­cial charger really nec­es­sary you may ask. Some elec­tric ve­hi­cles will power up via a domestic power point but there have been re­ported prob­lems of fused lights and in­ter­rupted sup­ply which the Re­nault plan avoids.

In ad­di­tion. it al­lows own­ers to fire up us­ing su­per­charge which will give 80 per cent top-up in less than an hour.

ELEC­TRIC DREAMS: The Zoe, above and top, Re­nault’s elec­tric hatch­back which can be yours for £13,995 – but not the bat­tery.

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