What should I be paying?
Renault will happily take your money in a couple of different ways. Bought outright, the Zoe starts at £25,670 after the government’s plug-in car grant (or £27,620 if you want the new R135 motor, which isn’t available with the base trim level). That’s about the same as the Peugeot e-208, Vauxhall Corsa-e and Honda e, which all cost in the region of £25-26K.
Or you can buy the car then effectively lease the 52kWh battery from Renault. Do this and you’ll be asked to pay from £18,670 (or £20,620 for the R135) up front, then a monthly rental on the battery. The bigger your annual mileage, the more you’ll have to pay per month. Prices for the new car haven’t been finalised, but for the old 40kWh car Renault charged £59/month for 4,500 miles per year. From then on it charged an extra £10 per month for every additional 1,500 miles (so 6,000 miles per year cost £69, 7,500 cost £79 and so-on). An unlimited mileage plan cost £110 per month.
So if you buy a Zoe R135 for £20,620, and pay say £79 per month for 7,500 miles per year, you could drive it for over seven years, covering 52,500 miles, before it would become more economical to have bought the car outright. Go down this route and Renault guarantees the battery to 75 per cent of its original capacity (and will repair/replace it when it dips below that) and gives you 24/7 roadside assistance that covers you even if you run out of juice. Buy the car outright, and you’re warrantied for eight years/100,000 miles, and the battery to 66 per cent of its original capacity.
Both these options - outright purchase or battery lease - work with finance too. Go for the battery lease option, and the monthly lease payment for the car itself is simply added to your battery payment. But whichever way you choose to do it, Renault will install a free 7kW wallbox at your house. A must-have for any EV owner. Capable of charging the Zoe from empty to 100 per cent in around 9.5 hours (significantly faster than a three-pin plug), the company says a full charge should cost around £7 on a standard UK energy tariff.
For the first time the Zoe supports 50kW DC charging. Well, it does if you go for the R135 motor and pay an extra £750. So equipped, it’ll get you to 80 per cent charge in 1hr 10mins. It’s worth bearing in mind that competitors such as the Honda e and Vauxhall Corsa-e/Peugeot e-208 support 100kW charging, which gives an 80 per cent charge in 30 minutes. But then you have to actually find a 100kW charger...
There are three trim-levels to choose from - Play, Iconic and GT Line. The former is only available with the little R110 motor, but has the headline grabbing £18,670 price. Nonetheless it still gets full LED headlights, a 7in touchscreen, cruise control, automatic full LED headlights and air conditioning. Iconic adds the option to upgrade to the R135 motor, wireless phone charging and some assistance systems. Meanwhile GT Line gets the big infotainment system (you can spec it on Iconic), nicer trim, blind-spot warning and 16in alloy wheels.