The Fluence ZE is yet another electric car from the Renault line as it remains keen to stay ahead in the EV race. This particular offering has been available for a while now but received a facelift in 2012. Read on to find out how it compares to the latest electric cars on the market.
The Fluence is relatively new to the UK but it has been available in Europe for a considerable period of time. The aforementioned facelift has given a futuristic look to the car with exterior trim, blue tinted badges, projector style headlights and the new Renault corporate grille along with other minor changes. Nonetheless, it is not a design to set the pulse racing.
The Renault Fluence possesses a very large battery; so large in fact that the car’s body has been stretched to accommodate it. The interior provides you with a well-built cabin and the dashboard is covered in soft touch plastic. There is Z.E badging on the dashboard and dials showing energy usage and battery charge as per usual in electric cars.
It’s a large car and the interior feels extremely spacious. You can fit three adults at the back and the boot’s capacity is 317 litres which is very large for an electric car.
Like most EVs, the Fluence moves away silently and rapidly from a standstill and gets to 30mph in 4.1 seconds. The acceleration process feels so smooth you’ll think it won’t stop but ultimately, the car’s top speed is 84mph and travelling at high speeds will only drain your juice rapidly.
With 166lb ft of torque at your disposal immediately, the Fluence is a great car for the city as you can quickly move away at traffic lights and junctions. However, at 1605kg, the Fluence is not a sporty car and you can feel the weight as you try to speed up. Renault claim the range is 115 miles but this varies on weather conditions and how you drive the car.
With every full charge costing you just £3 ($5), you can see the appeal of the Renault Fluence or any electric car for that matter. It is a good option for those looking to drive a second car for shorter commutes in urban areas and at £22,000 ($37,000); it isn’t as expensive as some of its rivals.
The problem is that you have to lease the battery system and that can prove expensive unless you agree to a longer term lease. Ultimately, the Fluence ticks most of the boxes for high quality EVs for city and town use and represents a good purchase.
- Rating: 4/5
- Cost: £22,195 ($37,000)
- Miles Per Gallon Equivalent (MPG): estimated at 149mpg
- Official Driving Range (Miles): 115 miles
- Standard Charging Time (Hours): 8 hours
- Practicality (Seats & Doors): 4 doors, 5 seats
- Engine Size: 70kW
- Engine Power: 70bhp
- Transmission: 5-speed manual, 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic
- Acceleration (0-62mph): 13.4 seconds
- Top Speed (mph): 84mph
- NCAP Safety Rating: 4 stars