The world's first mass-produced electric car with swappable battery capability, the Renault Fluence Z.E., will stroll into the Danish market as the leaves hits the ground (i.e., autumn) in 2011. The vehicle will be offered to Better Place subscribers who will then have access to a nationwide network of both conventional charging units and battery exchange stations. Unlike Nissan, Renault will offer its electric vehicles at a set price, while charging extra fees for battery rental. This approach makes up-front costs more appealing, but those monthly battery fees add up quickly.
The Ingenioren, a Danish news outlet, reports that Better Place has set pricing for the Fluence Z.E., but is still ironing out the monthly rental rates. Via some help provided by Google Translate – because mastery of the Danish language still eludes us – we find that the Fluence Z.E. should start at a base price of 205,000 Danish Kroner ($38,409 U.S. at the current exchange rate). Buyers can then expect to pony up somewhere in the neighborhood of 589 Kroner ($110 U.S.) per month for battery rentals fees. Better Place will also provide buyers with a home charging unit, which is apparently included with each Fluence purchase. Let's reiterate, our understanding of Danish is non-existent, so any detailed interpretations of the article linked to below would be greatly appreciated. Hat tip to Dan F.!
*UPDATE: Our translation did indeed need help. Better Place contacted AutoblogGreen to say that it has not yet announced a subscription price for the battery. The 205,000 Danish Kroner price is accurate (and that includes VAT) but the 589 Kroner price is apparently based on Renault's battery-rental price in the UK. A Better Place spokesperson wrote, "The providing of a charge spot as part of the car purchase is also a misunderstanding. In the Danish text both aspects are pretty clear." Renault's official website says:
The family sedan Fluence Z.E. will be launched first in Israel (1st semester 2011) and then in other countries. Prices in Europe will start at a price of approximately €26,000 (depending on the local VAT rate). Prices in France will start from €21,300 with the €5,000 tax incentive deducted. Customers will also subscribe to a monthly lease starting from €79 (including VAT) to cover the battery.