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No electric Renaultsports (yet), says Renault’s EV boss
Following reveal of 350bhp electric Trezor concept, we talk performance EVs
The 2016 Paris motor show was dominated by electric concepts, with the 350bhp Renault Trezor easily out-posing Mercedes’ and VW’s battery-powered newcomers. Which got us thinking – is Renault’s fast, sleek design study a hint that its most high-performance models could make a, erm, shock switch to electric power?
Renault’s Electric Vehicle Programme Director, Eric Feunteun, quickly quashed the speculation.
“The idea behind the Trezor is very simple. It’s a concept car that shows the future of Renault in the long term – not just one car – but the design trends you’ll recognise in our future line-up. The car is electric, and the future of Renault is electric, and the car is fast and fun to drive, but it doesn’t preview any particular model”. Wallets and purses away guys, it ain’t happening. We tried.
Feunteun continues over TG’s sobs at the Trezor’s lack of production hopes: “At this stage, there is no plan for a Renaultsport EV. Of course, we’re working on improving the power of our motors – this is just one area of improvement for the future – but developing a new battery to store more energy requires a huge amount of investment, and huge amount of resources, and we have to focus our resources on the key [mainstream] cars.” Well, if Renaultsport isn’t going EV any time soon then hopefully it can crack on making the Clio RS16 instead…
Feunteun also provided some updates about how Renault was reacting to the slow but sure increase in demand for EVs, and the resulting strain on infrastructure. “Until this year, when you wanted to charge in public, the question you had was ‘where is the nearest charging station?’ Now we have over 80,000 chargers dotted around Europe, the question you have is ‘is the charging bay occupied?’”
“So we will have an app in our R-link system which shows you the availability of the charger – if it’s broken, or occupied – and the second problem is using different grids and different networks in different countries, and having to carry maybe ten different membership cards. We’re starting a system called ZE Pass, which will let you use all charging points just from one card. But we are depending on companies to connect and help.”
So, EV ownership should be getting easier, but Tesla’s maintaining its monopoly on electric speed machines. For now…