Reports of Renault's plan to relaunch the decades-old, performance-oriented Gordini moniker are charging up. According to Autocar, Renault plans to release a performance version of its electric Zoe hatchback, with the Gordini tag, as early as 2013. The high-output hatch will most likely be fitted with the Nissan Leaf's electric powertrain, which would bump the Zoe's horsepower rating from 80 to 134 and jolt its torque numbers from 164 pound-feet up to 200. The standard electric Zoe is no slouch and is capable of scooting to 60 miles per hour in eight seconds, hitting a top speed of 84 miles per hour and running up to 99 miles on a single charge.
The deputy director of Renault's electric vehicle program, Matthieu Tenenbaum, all but officially confirmed that the automaker will launch a high-performance electric hatch, telling Autocar that:
More zing with only a slight hit to the vehicle's range seems like an acceptable combo to us.We have a higher-powered version of the car in mind for slightly later in its life cycle. We considered offering two versions of the car from the beginning, but thought it would over-complicate the buying process for early adopters. There would be little penalty in range (for the performance-oriented Zoe) when measured on the standard European driving cycle.