• Jul 5, 2011
Renault Fluence Z.E. – Click above for high-res image gallery

How low can Renault go? Well, in terms of UK pricing for its electric Fluence Z.E., the answer to that question is £17,850 ($28,576 U.S. at the current exchange rate).

That £17,850 includes the UK's £5000 ($8,005 U.S.) Plug-In Car Grant, but excludes the £75 ($120 U.S.) per month fee to lease the vehicle's battery. Still, at the price, Renault says the Fluence Z.E. is the "UK's most affordable electric car."

The entry-level Prime Time Fluence Z.E is shod with 16-inch alloy wheels and comes packed with features, including climate control, cruise control and a navigation system. Unexpectedly, Renault has fitted the Fluence Z.E. with dual charging sockets. That's one plug-in port per front fender. The Fluence Z.E.'s electric motor churns out 95 horsepower and 167 pound-feet of torque. Renault claims that the electric Fluence tops out at 84 miles per hour and has a range of up to 115 miles, "depending on driving and road conditions."

Potential Fluence Z.E buyers can reserve a spot in line with a low-cost deposit of £20 ($32 U.S.). Renault expects to launch the electric Fluence in the fall of 2012.



Photos by Sebastian Blanco / Copyright ©2011 AOL

[Source: Autocar, Renault]


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 29 Comments
      Jeff Zekas
      • 3 Years Ago
      Awesome! After 30 years, maybe we shall finally be able to buy Renault vehicles in the USA!
      Marco Polo
      • 3 Years Ago
      I must admit, I'm just a little confused over the battery leasing concept as a business model. If, as Carlos Ghosn says, the battery pack costs Renault in excess of GBP 10,000, and the battery can be leased at GBP 900 p.a. for 3 years, then Renault must believe that a market for used batteries priced at GBP 9500, will exist, in three years time, . However you juggle the figures, the battery leasing idea must be a loss factor for Renault. (Or the batteries are much cheaper than Ghosn claims). Or, maybe Renault have a secret plan to sell these battery packs to Better Place to reduce the cost of swapping? I have no idea how Renault's pricing strategy works, or why battery leasing it isn't offered with the Leaf. But when something seems too good to be true, it usually is! I also find it odd that after all this time and all the careful planning surrounding an important new model, the best answer Renault can provide for higher mileages is "Andy Heiron, Renault's head of electric vehicles, suggested that the extra cost for 9,000 miles per annum or 15,000 miles per annum could be as little as £10 and £20 respectively." Call me cynical, but the words, "suggested" and "could be", sound odd when relating to a market-ready car ! I'm not saying that Renault are doing anything wrong or improper, or that the Fluence ZE isn't a great EV. I'm just saying, that the battery leasing concept, doesn't seem to make commercial sense. Maybe, Renault is anxious to capture the market by selling vehicles below cost, but that doesn't sound very feasible.
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @Marco Polo
        The battery can be leased at GBP 2700 p.a. for 3 years. Diference between Fluence and Leaf are £8000 . In France diference is €9000. So I think battery cost £8000, €9000. Renault must believe that market for used batteries priced at GBP 5300 will exist, in three years time. Andy Heiron uses these words because they can not say anything until the commercial launch in October. In theory, at 3 years Renault change the battery for the second generation for free and the old will go to the industry as energy accumulators. The question is, why you want to buy something that will drop in price considerably, will improve capacity and rent is competitive?
          • 13 Hours Ago
          I do not see how Renault can lose money. The replaced is free (less than 10 minutes), the second battery no. You will have new lease contract, probably cheaper than first (£50 / month). Companies are in business to make, not lose money, totally agree... but Renault sell cars, not batteries, so I think they rent at bargain prices. The batteries after 3 years will have 90% of capacity (depending on annual miles). A 10% reduction in the autonomy is critical with these cars because they have little range. However, in a house or a photovoltaic system gives the same as having 100 modules at 90% to 90 modules to 100%. They will be old batteries for a vehicle but practically new for other use static. For future fast charging stations also serve second-hand modules. Example: The battery of the Fluence is not 22 kwh, is at least 26 kwh, a little more than Leaf. It cost £8000 (diference between Fluence and Leaf). You pay £2700 in 3 years of rent. Renault has to sell battery for £5300 in 2015 if they don't want to lose money. KWH in 2015 = $315 = €225 = £205 http://green.autoblog.com/2011/01/06/deutsche-bank-li-ion-battery-cost-forecast-per-kwh/ *** £205 x 26 = £5330 ***
          Marco Polo
          • 13 Hours Ago
          I think you are missing the point. I'm not saying that this is a bad deal for the consumer. But it's a bad deal for Renault! Now, I might be cynical, but car companies are in business to make, not lose money! Even if the battery cost GBP 9000, not GBP 10,000 this is still a substantial loss for Renault. If Renault replaced the second battery for free, the situation for Renault would be horrendous. I just can't see a market as energy accumulators paying that much for used batteries! Either way, Renault lose money.
        skierpage
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Slide 17 in the deck by Renault's German communications VP that Fernando linked suggest Renault is pricing so that vehicle purchase price after incentives will be the same as ICE car, while during operation electricity + battery rent will be a saving over the fuel consumption of ICE car. As to how the economics work, ??? http://www.dhl.com/content/dam/downloads/g0/press/press_events/automotive/3_renault_electric_mobility_zirpel_30062011.pdf , interesting stuff.
          • 13 Hours Ago
          @skierpage
          "The cost to the community, through the aid for the purchase of 5,000 euros, shocked Mr. Prud'homme. So why such help is it necessary, beyond the environmental benefits? It's simple: the automotive industry is an industry volume, it is competitive when volumes are high. We produce nearly 1 million copies of the 1.5 dCi diesel engine, found in the Clio or Megane (and Nissan). An electric motor costs now twice as expensive. Batteries are not to their economic optimum. The overall additional cost today is around 5000 euros. We already know how, year after year, costs will decline to join those of combustion vehicles." An electric motor is very simple compared with diesel, and so electric motor is cheaper. But 1.000.000 units of 1.5 dci causes the opposite effect. http://lecercle.lesechos.fr/entreprises-marches/industrie/221131638/renault-croit-lavenir-de-la-voiture-electrique
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Renault is entering this market as a leader with 4 different models (not to include Leaf) , not to probe it like overpriced IMIEV . It seems like in long term and mass production electric cars are much cheaper than others ( not including batteries )
      uncle_sam
      • 3 Years Ago
      I would buy it, lease the battery for one or two years, and then stuff some lifepo4s in it. Oh and a genset trailer would be nice. also for the leaf. like many ev nuts made for their cars.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Thanks guys for the calcuations. I hope people will look at the price over the life of the car. Also considering that people will pay extra for non important things like leather seats or electric rear windows, paying 75 per month for a battery (which will be even better in 2 years time) is a great deal. It all depends on how open peoples' minds are.
      Jeff Zekas
      • 3 Years Ago
      Finally! After 30 years, we shall be able to buy (maybe) a Renault vehicle in the USA!
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Jeff Zekas
        What makes you think it is coming to the USA? This is not West Side Story! ;-)
      Peter
      • 3 Years Ago
      About the price of a Golf 1.6 TDI and the battery lease is about the price of a tank of diesel, no?.... interesting, I wonder what type of sales this model will get
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @Peter
        VW Golf 1.6 TDI real consuptiom 5.46 liter each 100 km: http://www.spritmonitor.de/en/overview/50-Volkswagen/452-Golf.html?fueltype=1&constyear_s=2008&constyear_e=2011&power_s=104&power_e=111&powerunit=2 Diesel liter £1.3934 http://www.theaa.com/motoring_advice/fuel/ So £ 7.61 each 100 km, £ 7,61 each 62 miles. 6000 miles, £ 736 9000 miles, £ 1105 12000 miles, £ 1473 15000 miles , £ 1841 18000 miles, £ 2209 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- With Fluence ZE: £ 75 x 12 month = £ 900 ¿energy £ 1.5 each 62 miles? 6000 miles, £ 1045 9000 miles, £ 1118 12000 miles, £ 1190 15000 miles , £ 1263 18000 miles, £ 1335
          Schmart Guy
          • 13 Hours Ago
          Renault states that the battery lease starts at £ 75 and it is for 6000 miles per year. I couldn't find any information on lease rates for higher mileage, but I imagine it will be more. That would change your results for all but 6000 miles of the Fluence ZE.
          • 13 Hours Ago
          Yes Schmart Guy, i found it:: "Andy Heiron, Renault's head of electric vehicles, suggested that the extra cost for 9,000 miles per annum or 15,000 miles per annum could be as little as £10 and £20 respectively. " http://www.motortorque.com/reviews/auto-1107/renault-fluence-ze-first-drive.asp 6000 miles, £ 1045 9000 miles, £ 1238 ( £85 per month) 12000 miles, £ 1370 ( £90 per month) 15000 miles , £ 1503 ( £95 per month) 18000 miles, £ 1635 ( £100 per month) And not include maintenance, more expensive in a diesel than in a petrol.
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @Peter
        And Golf 1.6 TDI is from £17,850 to £21,055. The equipment of £17,850 is poor compared with Fluence: Paint Metallic + £465, Alloy wheels 15" 'Wellington' +£405, Electric windows, rear + £170, Cruise control +£230, Parking sensors, front and rear +£435, DVD touch-screen radio/navigation system +£1180, Dusk sensor, automatic driving lights.
          • 13 Hours Ago
          They choose Renault Zoe, cheaper and with more range than Fluence (more than 120 miles).
          Peter
          • 13 Hours Ago
          Thanks for the details. I was pointing out that the electric is competitively priced. The calculations will vary obviously. You are not likely going to be putting on a large number of miles with the Fluence ZE, as the extra-urban component is limited by range. Furthermore the Golf TDI will get 5.7 l/100km but not in a predominantly city usage, and neither will the cost of diesel stay at 139p per liter during the life of the car. Anyone who can afford a Golf 1.6 TDI will be able to afford the Fluence ZE. Which will they choose?
      • 3 Years Ago
      Leased batteries offer better electric vehicle value. "Nissan Leaf - which comes with a fixed battery included in the cost - would retain approximately 35 percent of its value after three years and 36,000 miles (around 58,000 km). However, an electric vehicle of a similar size to the Nissan Leaf but with a leased battery should retain 54 percent of its original value over the same period, according to the predictions." http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/motoring/leased-batteries-offer-better-electric-vehicle-value-says-research-2283734.html The Nissan LEAF, costs from £25,990 (including the grant). £25990 - £17850 = £8140 £8140 / £75 = 108 months, 9 years
      Ladson
      • 3 Years Ago
      So!, here is the plan: buy the chassis, rent the battery for a few years until the battery technology improves and drops in price; then, buy an aftermarket battery and charger; and, live in the joy of full independence from paying a premium for electrons. Listen!, the resale price formula of used EVs cannot be compared to the current system on ICES used by the industry to boost new car sales. ICE drivelines lose their power over time because of wear and tear...lots of spinning gears, heat, burned oil, leaking liquids seals, high maintenance fees and parts costs, etc. EVs and ICEs share few things in common; perhaps hydraulic brakes, a 12 volt battery, differential and a coolant system currently. Also, as they advance, there may be little need for the hydraulics and a low voltage battery as these devices are replaced by advanced electric products, thus improving reliability and reducing maintenance costs. Using the same dopey system to calculate used EV prices makes no sense at all except for those who believe the hype. You only need to follow the pricing of used Toyota Prius autos to see they hold their prices better than pure ICEs.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Ladson
        "buy the chassis, rent the battery for a few years until the battery technology improves and drops in price; then, buy an aftermarket battery and charger; and, live in the joy of full independence from paying a premium for electrons. " It is not necessary to do that because Renault, three years later, will renew the lease with second-generation batteries, replacing the old free. The rental fee may be lower than today.
      skierpage
      • 3 Years Ago
      It'll be interesting to compare the battery lease cost direct from Renault vs. those countries where Better Place is involved. I wonder if the UK Fluence Z.E. even has the QuickDrop battery mounting. The Fluence Z.E. doesn't have DC fast charge capability.
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @skierpage
        With battery stations you will pay more than double per month. In Betterplace model, the annual mileage at which it is cheaper to switch to an electric car is (in Australia): 25.000 km in 2012 17.500 km in 2015 10.000 km in 2020 Page 4: http://www.dtf.vic.gov.au/CA25713E0002EF43/WebObj/BetterPlacesubmission/$File/Better%20Place%20submission.pdf Without battery stations, from the begining 15.000 km. In 2015 maybe 10.000 km per year. "The Fluence Z.E. doesn't have DC fast charge capability." In 2012-2013 Fluence, Zoe and Kangoo will have AC fast charge. In Europe called "mode 3", 22 kw - 44 kw. Chademo is DC and is called "mode 4". The diference of cost is very high: Infrastructure cost: AC 3.000-4.000 € DC 17.000-20.000 € Car cost (vs 3kW only): AC +150 € DC +150 € Page 21: http://www.dhl.com/content/dam/downloads/g0/press/press_events/automotive/3_renault_electric_mobility_zirpel_30062011.pdf
          skierpage
          • 13 Hours Ago
          @Fernando, Renault is a member of ACEA European Automobile Manufacturer's Association, and in March 2011 for AC charging up to 3.7 kW that group definitively recommends the IEC 62196-2 Type 2 (Mennekes ) connector for public charging, home charging, and the plug on the end of the car's charging cable; the only alternatives it mentions is a dumb domestic plug or the IEC 60309-2 circular industrial AC connector. Their language about shuttered sockets like the EV Plug Alliance's is vague, "As for harmonized solution, ACEA strongly recommends to unify national regulations concerning socket outlet Types without shutter." There's nothing stopping you from carrying a cable with the EV Charging alliance plug on one end and a plug for your car's receptacle on the other. That's probably all Renault was endorsing. Unless there's a split in ACEA, the EV Plug Alliance's SCAME connector seems to have lost, the Mennekes connector has "won", and for now both have negligible real-world traction in Europe. Already ACEA has moved on to talk about a "Combo2" receptacle on the car with Mennekes connector plus additional pins to support higher-power charging, both DC and AC. Until it gets sorted out, as I said Europeans will be driving around with a cable in the trunk, maybe more than one if these half-assed partial solutions show up in public charging stations.
          skierpage
          • 13 Hours Ago
          "In 2012-2013 Fluence, Zoe and Kangoo will have AC fast charge. In Europe called "mode 3", 22 kw - 44 kw." Where does Renault say that? I believe NONE of them will recharge at those power levels (no supplier makes an on-board AC charger that can handle more than the Roadster's 16.8 kW), and right now NO public charging stations supply that much juice. Just because the German Mennekes connector *can* supply 44 kW, that doesn't mean it will happen on either end. Nevertheless, that's an interesting slide. It's good news that Renault thinks high-powered on-board AC will only add 150 €, and the fact that the high-power AC column is in green suggests Renault favors it over CHAdeMO, but I'd love to know what Renault's *German* communications guy (note Germany seems the only country promoting IEC 62196 with VDE-AR-E 2623-2-2 Mennekes connector) actually said. I think Europe will muddle through for years with most public charging stations being "household mains socket in a waterproof box", so the different AC connectors on different plug-in cars will primarily affect your home charging station. It will be great when and if thousands of fast charge stations appear on major roads and the cars that supported their "standard" enjoy a competitive advantage.
          • 13 Hours Ago
          I think Renault not will use Mennekes, will use Ev Plug Alliance (French-Italian): http://www2.schneider-electric.com/corporate/en/press/press-releases/viewer-press-releases.page?c_filepath=/templatedata/Content/Press_Release/data/en/shared/2010/03/20100317_creation_of_the_ev_plug_alliance_by_three_major_industrial_players.xml Media Renault, page 5, in Spanish: "- Tiempos de recarga: 30 minutos Como alternativa a los bornes de carga rápida, se ofrecerán a los socios públicos y privados que deseen desarrollar la infraestructura de carga en la red viaria, en sus centros, etc., bornes de carga rápida llamada «acelerada». Estos bornes suministran una potencia de entre 3 y 22 kW y permiten recargar ZOE en 1 hora y, más adelante, Fluence Z.E. de Kangoo Z.E. Esta infraestructura ofrece un coste más atractivo, lo que favorecerá su despliegue" http://www.prensa.renault.es/archivos/noticias/505/DOSSIER_DE_PRENSARENAULT_SALONDEBARCELONA2011.doc
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @skierpage
        In Israel its 300$ per month for 20000 km/year limit . Sales begin in August-September this year
        Marco Polo
        • 13 Hours Ago
        @skierpage
        Better Place's anouncement regarding Denmark notwithstanding, outside of Israel, Better Place would appear to be just vaporware.
    • Load More Comments