The Renault Zoe (sometimes stylized as ZOE and pronounced as “Zoé”) is a five-door supermini electric car produced by the French manufacturer Renault. Renault originally unveiled, under the Zoe name, a number of different concept cars. Initially in 2005 as the Zoe City Car and later as the Zoe Z.E. electric concept was shown in two different versions in 2009 and 2010 under the Renault Z.E. name. A production ready version of the Zoe was shown at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show.
Retail customer deliveries began in France in December 2012, followed in 2013 by several European countries. Since 2013, the Zoe has been the all-time top selling all-electric car in the French market, with more than 100,000 units registered through June 2020. The Zoe was the top selling all-electric car in Europe for two years running, 2015 and 2016, and also topped European sales in the broader plug-in electric car segment in 2016. Since inception, global sales totaled almost 182,000 units through December 2019.
The first production Zoe had a 22 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that delivers a range between 210 km (130 mi) and 240 km (150 mi) under the NEDC cycle. In September 2016, Renault announced the introduction of new higher range model with a 41 kWh lithium-ion battery, increasing the range to 400 km (250 mi) under the NEDC cycle. In mid 2018 a new model with increased motor power of 80 kW (110 hp), was announced as the ZE 40 R110. In mid 2019, the ZE 50 R135 was announced, with a 55 kWh battery pack (52 usable) and 100 kW (130 hp) motor, and CCS charging; the final production-ready model was shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show and deliveries started in January 2020.
Zoe City Car Concept (2005)
The Renault Zoe City Car concept (or Z17) was shown at the 2005 Geneva Motor Show featuring 3 seats, the 3.45 m long open top vehicle was proposed as an urban focused car. This Zoe had no connection with the later electric Zoe concept to follow four years later.
Zoe Concept (2009)
The Renault Zoe Concept was shown to the public in 2009 at the Frankfurt Motor Show to show the company’s vision for a Clio sized electric car. It was powered by a 71 kW (95 hp) electric motor (mounted at the front) and lithium-ion batteries (under the seats). It was estimated it would have a range of 160 kilometres (99 mi) and a top speed of 145 km/h (90 mph), and could be charged at a conventional 230 V socket, or fast-charged from a high-voltage supply to 80 percent in only 20 minutes. A third innovative option was to swap the batteries for a new pack at a Renault Quickdrop centre.
The design was tear-drop shaped featuring a see-through roof features solar panels which run the air-conditioning system and gull-wing doors. A new climate control system was also shown, developed with L’Oréal, which could spray essential oils into the interior to cut out harmful exterior smells, or rehydrate the interior to prevent skin drying out.
Zoe Preview (2010)
The Zoe Preview, a substantially revised version of the Zoe concept, was shown to the public at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, and was claimed to be a near-definitive representation (90% showroom ready) of the final version of the car. Many of the existing design features of the 2009 concept model were discarded such as the gull-wing doors.
The technical specifications had changed from the 2009 version with the power of the electric motor reduced to 66 kW (89 hp), a reduced top speed of 145 km/h (90 mph), but still with a 160 kilometres (99 mi) range. It was suggested that the Zoe ZE would be priced from €15,000.
Zoe E-Sport (2017)
The Zoe E-sport is a hot hatch electric car concept unveiled at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show. It has an all-wheel drive design with two electric motors, each one powering an axle. The combined power from both is 340 kW (456 bhp) and the torque 640 N⋅m (472 lbf⋅ft). The lithium-ion battery package weighs 450 kg (992 lb) and is on the rear. The car, weighing 1,450 kg (3,197 lb), has a carbon fibre chassis, racing brakes and equipment, and a double wishbone suspension on both axles.