The Renault ZOE Electric Vehicle [EV] was originally shown as a concept vehicle back in the 2010 Paris Motor Show. At the time, it was proposed to have the ability to charge on L2 240 V stations, some sort of fast charging station, as well as making the battery pack swappable (Better Place compatible, n.r.), reducing the ‘recharge’ time to less than five minutes.
Two years later, at the 2012 Paris Motor Show, ZOE won 51% of the vote to take the title of Best Green Car.
While the new Renault ZOE has lost the battery-swapping ability, details of the advanced charging system has been revealed. The Caméléon charging system on the vehicle has the ability to adapt to whatever power is available.
If connected to the typical single-phase 240 V outlet, the system draws about 3 kW, taking about 9 hours to fully charge the battery pack. If connected to a three-phase 240 V outlet, the system can draw as much as 43 kW and charge the battery in about 30 minutes.
Renault confirmed that it would indeed begin production of the 2013 Renault ZOE this year and started taking orders at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. ZOE is built aerodynamically, has seating for four, and is estimated to between 60 and 95 miles range in the city. The sub-compact urban EV starts at $26,820, but this doesn’t include the cost of the battery pack, which is leased at about $102 per month, which helps keep the starting price of the vehicle lower.
Renault already has three other EVs on the market, including the Fluence ZE, Kangoo ZE, and the Twizy. The have 30% of the global EV market share as of May 2012, and 54% of the EV market share in Europe as of June 2012.