In conjunction with the Government’s Go Ultra Low campaign, Renault have launched a couple more incentives to attract customers to their electric vehicles, specifically the ZOE.
Available in Europe since the 16th January 2014, a new lower mileage battery hire option was made available that has now come to the UK too. With a restriction of 3,000 miles per year the new battery rental price will be £45 per month. Although this may at first still sound fairly steep for only a casual user, the maths does work out quite nicely in the electric cars favour.
If you consider an average vehicle you might already own, running on petrol and doing only 250 miles per month, not forgetting the likely Vehicle Excise Duty of around £150 for the year on top of fuel costs, the total monthly spend will be somewhere in the region of £50. The same mileage criteria in the Renault ZOE with electricity tarrifs combined will likely cost a similar amount per month, but cost less with cheaper night electricity tarrifs or solar power should you have those implemented.
However, Renault are keen to point out the ZOE costs less initially than a comparably sized, diesel powered, Ford Fiesta yet offers a level of refinement with the electric power plant the Ford’s diesel simply cannot match. Not only that, but superior levels of standard equipment mean the ZOE also out specs Britain’s best seller too.
Based on such low monthly mileages, this new three year term is likely to only appeal to those doing infrequent short trips and not anybody who either does the school run or uses their car for commuting, if mileage is anything over 8 miles a day in total (or 11 miles a day excluding weekends). However, there are plenty of low-mileage drivers out there who Renault had previously not had a very viable option for. Now that they do, and with the costs being tantamount to the same thing when compared with either a petrol of diesel equivalent, the electric ZOE is a reasonable proposition.
If the initial purchasing of the ZOE is the offputting factor, then Renault have got some answers there too. Renault are introducing a new finance offer for the Renault ZOE which goes as follows:
“…available, until 31st March 2014, on Renault Selections PCP from £189 per month, with a deposit of just £1,720, including a £1,000 customer deposit contribution. That’s on top of comprehensive Renault 4+ package, worth over £1,000, which includes 4 years/100,000 miles warranty, roadside assistance and routine servicing (4 years/48,000 miles).”
Renault are also introducing a new customer loyalty scheme called Selections 500. This new scheme guarantees £500 as a part-exchange bonus towards any new Renault model, including the ZOE, at the end of a customer’s finance contract.
With respect to keeping the ZOE charged up and ready to go, Renault also offer the free installation of a 7kW Wallbox which can recharge the ZOE in as little as 3 to 4 hours. If that wasn’t already enough to take into your calculations, Renault say that all this amounts to possible savings of up to £2,500 before taking into consideration the types of thing electric car buyers enjoy such as Benefit-in-Kind, road tax and congestion charge benefits, all of which cost less than internal combustion engined equivalent vehicles.
Renault give an example representative finance offer for Renault ZOE Dynamique Intens or Dynamique Zen as:
48 monthly payments of £189 including VAT (excludes £45 battery hire, based on 36 months/3,000 miles per year)
- Customer deposit £1,720
- On-the-road price £15,195
- Deposit contribution £1,000
- Total amount to be financed £13,475
- Acceptance fee £99
- Optional final payment £6,005
- Credit facility fee £139
- Option to purchase fee £10
- Total amount payable by customer £17,045
- Rate of interest (fixed) per annum 7.02%
- Representative 7.7%
- Total rental £234 (including £45 per month battery hire)
Critics of Renault’s battery rental scheme will say that it’s an additional cost regardless of mileage one might do during the course of a year, such as when on holiday and still have to pay for the rental of the battery. However, the majority of users feel that the battery rental scheme means peace of mind for the most expensive component of the car. Under the scheme, should anything go wrong with the battery or it loses it’s ability to hold charge by 25%, Renault will simply repair or replace it regardless of vehicle age or mileage.
Likewise, the fear of running out of juice – or range anxiety as it’s more commonly known – is dealt with by providing cover to take people to a nearby charge point which includes any one of the many Renault dealerships that exist around the country.