Renault Zoe, Kangoo Z.E. Electric Vehicles: Now With Batteries Included

When Renault unveiled its range of electric vehicles back in 2011, it also unveiled an as-then unheard of ownership model for electric vehicles: owning the vehicle but leasing the battery pack.

Renault's all-electric ZOE hatchback and Kangoo Z.E. Van are now available in the UK with batteries included.

Renault’s all-electric ZOE hatchback and Kangoo Z.E. Van are now available in the UK with batteries included.

Designed to help spread the cost of electric car ownership out by allowing customers to buy the cars themselves but lease the battery pack, Renault’s battery lease model offered some significant benefits over traditional purchase models, including a lower initial purchase price and ongoing battery warranty. Despite these benefits however, many customers shied away from Renault’s unusual ownership model, expressing a preference to own the vehicle and its batteries outright.

Although Renault initially seemed reluctant to offer such an option for its customers, the French automaker has warmed to the idea over recent months and has just announced it will offer customers in the UK the option to purchase the Renault ZOE electric hatchback and Renault Kangoo Z.E. electric van with batteries included rather than leased.

Offered alongside the existing battery hire option that Renault has offered since launch on the Renault ZOE, Renault Kangoo and Renault Twizy, the new purchase options are available from today, and will be marketed to those who either are unsure of their annual mileage requirements or are worried about the continuing commitment of a monthly battery lease.

Renault says the new purchase option — which it will call the ZOE i and Kangoo Van Z.E. i — can be applied to any of the existing trim options available for either vehicle, with the entry-level Zoe i available from £23,443 before incentives and the Kangoo Van Z.E. i available from £27,393 before incentives.

The new purchase option will allow for much more flexible ownership packages, says Renault.

The new purchase option will allow for much more flexible ownership packages, says Renault.

Given UK government grants of £5,000 are available on the ZOE, that reduces the effective purchase price to £18,443 after incentives, while the £8,000 government grant available for electric van purchases reduces the cost of the Kangoo Z.E.Van i to £19393 after incentives. For businesses — who can claim back the standard 20 percent VAT levied on vehicle purchases from their tax bill — the entry-level Kangoo Z.E. i purchase price is effectively reduced to just £16,161.

This contrasts with an entry level price of £13,995 for an entry-level ZOE with continuing battery rental from £25 per month, or £12,995 minus incentives and tax for the Kangoo Z.E. with battery rental from £33+VAT every month.

For those purchasing their Renault vehicles with battery included at point of sale, the vehicles will come with a standard five year, 60,000 mile battery warranty, covering everything from manufacturing defects or loss in capacity below 70 percent of the original battery capacity for ZOE and 66 percent for the Kangoo Z.E.

While Renault hasn’t detailed why it has decided to offer outright battery purchase, we suspect it has been driven by Renault’s experiences in Norway, where massive purchase incentives for electric cars favour outright purchase models rather than battery rental ones. The choice to offer both outright purchase and battery rental also means that Renault becomes instantly more competitive in a marketplace where most of its electric automaker rivals — including alliance partner Nissan — offer customers a choice to either purchase the vehicle outright with batteries included, or lease the batteries separately.

As for prospective owners of the Twizy, Renault’s tiny two-seat, limited-speed urban runabout? While Renault is offering battery purchase on its highway-capable cars, it says Twizy customers will have to continue leasing the batteries, and doesn’t plan to offer any purchase options at this time on Twizy.

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  • Surya

    This is awesome news and can only help give the ZOE the success it deserves.nnAll I’m wondering is: can existing customers now chose to buy the battery they’re currently leasing? And what effect would this have on that promised battery upgrade in a couple of years?

    • Guest

      Little heard of perhaps but not unheard of…my Citroen Berlingo Electrique van bought new in 2002 came with a mandatory rental for the nicad battery pack

      • Surya

        Where these built by Citroen or conversions by a third party?nBut with nicad I wouldn’t want to pay for them 🙂

  • just someone old

    also verry difficult to sell a second-hand car with a batterylease still on it!nmaybe renault noticed it had difficult selling the cars that got out of leasing

  • offib

    Now that’s more like it! Yet, the problem I have with the Z.Es in Ireland is that there is no definate information that they are sold completely or seperately. I never knew if their higher price here than there also included battery rental. The papers seems to think so. In euros, prices with the batteries included in the UK is almost identical to the prices here. It always made me doubtful to see the Zoe not cost around u20ac13,000 and as is seen in France and the UK, yet LEAF prices were very similar. The LEAF of which has no flex system at all in Ireland.

  • Steve Thayne

    Little heard of perhaps but not unheard of…my Citroen Berlingo Electrique van bought new in 2002 came with a mandatory rental for the nicad battery pack. Unlimited mileage though which led to them eventually giving ownership back to the individual….got 96,000 miles from that pack….n

  • Martin WINLOW

    Better late than never!