When it came to sales of its Zoe electric vehicle, Renault may have been thinking Toyota Camry Hybrid numbers. What the French automaker will get is a fraction of that. Renault, which debuted the Zoe earlier this year, will sell about 10,000 of them this year, or about a fifth of its 50,000-unit target, Automotive News says, citing research company Inovey. Through the first nine months of the year, Zoe sales in Europe stood at about 6,600 units, or about 40 percent of what the Nissan Leaf sells
The automotive journalist judges behind the World Green Car of the Year apparently with the overwhelming majority of AutoblogGreen readers, as they've just named the Tesla Model S their winner. We don't yet know what the official ballots were, but our informal poll had the Tesla beating the other two finalists – the all-electric Renault Zoe and the Volvo V60 plug-in hybrid – with over 82 percent of the vote.
There's no quicker way to jump-start plug-in vehicle sales than a big order from the government. When it comes to Renault, France certainly is obliging. France's Union des Groupements d'Achats Publics (UGAP) is ordering 2,000 (!) Renault Zoe electric vehicles and another 100 Fluence Z.E. EVs during the next three years.
French Minister of Industrial Renewal Amaud Montebourg wants his nation to be considered the world's electric-vehicle leader. "France can guide the electric revolution. We want electric vehicles to be for everyone," he said during the recent welcome-home ceremony for the Citroen C-Zero driving team that finished an eight month, 15,535 mile road trip on $300 worth of electricity, the Electric Odyssey.
Renault unveiled the production version of the Zoe all-electric car at the Geneva Motor Show this week, but what sounds most impressive is the car's price: £13,650 ($21,396 U.S. at today's exchange rates) after the government incentive of up to 25 percent of the car's cost in the UK. In France, the car starts at €20,750 ($27,200) but qualifies for a €5,000 ($6,555) grant, which brings the price down to €15,750 ($20,648). Interestingly, Renault says that "even in countries wh