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Renault Kangoo ZE

It was only a matter of time before Renault created a zero emissions version of its Kangoo van; mainly because it’s a lot cheaper than coming up with a new design! We were disappointed to learn that because it is a commercial vehicle, it is not eligible for the £5,000 Government grant (UK only) which is likely to hamper sales of this electric vehicle.

reanult kangoo ze interior

Renault Kangoo ZE. Image: Google UK

Design

You can purchase a five-seat maxi or two-seater van version of this model and we found it to be very good when it comes to hauling large loads. It was also surprisingly relaxing to drive because it is very quiet both on start up and when on the move; this is a pleasant contrast to vans that normally make a lot of noise.

On first glance, it isn’t easy to distinguish it from the internal combustion engine model as even little details such as the fuel filler cap on the side are the same. The main changes are stickers on the bodywork and a charging socket on the nose of the Kangoo ZE.

The cabin is again similar to the original model but there are of course new dials showing energy usage and battery charge which replace the old rev counter and fuel gauge. There are also features such as climate and cruise control, Bluetooth connectivity and parking sensors. In the Maxi version, you get up to 2,600 litres of boot space when you fold the rear seats.

renault kangoo ze interior

Renault Kangoo ZE. Image: Google UK

Performance

All versions of the Kangoo ZE have a 59bhp electric motor and the vehicle produces 226lbNm of torque which is very impressive and means it can haul large loads. There is a slight whine when the van accelerates but it is barely noticeable after a while and we found that it handled well overall.

Renault claim the Kangoo ZE has a range of 106 miles but this is dramatically reduced if you are carrying passengers or cargo. You can reduce the impressive torque output by pressing the eco button which should add 10% to your range. Renault states that 70% of van drivers drive less than 62 miles a day so the range shouldn’t be an issue for most.

Verdict

As is the case with many electric vehicles, you purchase the Kangoo ZE vehicle but rent the batteries so the result is a starting price of £22,000 and leases beginning at £60 a month. The ineligibility of the vehicle for the grant is a pain but it is a good solid van overall and well worth looking into if you want a larger electric vehicle.

  • Rating: 4/5
  • Cost: £22,000 ($36,000) + £60 ($99) a month lease for batteries
  • Miles Per Gallon Equivalent (MPG): 42.8mpg
  • Official Driving Range (Miles): 106 miles
  • Standard Charging Time (Hours): 6-8 hours
  • Practicality (Seats & Doors): 5 doors, 5 seats in the Maxi
  • Engine Size: 44kW electric motor
  • Engine Power: 59bhp
  • Transmission: Single-speed, front-wheel drive
  • Acceleration (0-62mph): 13 seconds
  • Top Speed (mph): 81mph
  • NCAP Safety Rating: 5 stars

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