2nd-gen Renault Zoe EV comes out for a test drive
The first generation of the all-electric Renault Zoe has been around since 2012. The hatchback counts among the most popular EVs of its type in Europe, with sales in 2018 surging 25% to 37,782 units compared to the year before. Despite the encouraging market statistics, the company still saw the need for a major update of the series.
As it turns out, the next-gen Zoe is already underway and should debut sometime closer to the end of 2019 – or the beginning of 2020, for that matter. In the meantime, let us have a closer look at the first spy shots of the vehicle.
As far as the exterior design is concerned, the car appears almost identical to the first-gen Zoe. This includes the characteristic sculpted sides, the doorframes, and the windows. So, chances are what we are dealing here is a mere mid-generational refresh / facelift. That said, our bet is still on ‘a new generation’. In all likelihood, Renault is testing new tech in an old body before proceeding with the styling changes. This is exactly how Nissan worked on its second-gen Leaf, too.
Anyway, the anti-fog lights, the radiator grille and the front bumper look slightly different on the test mule. And even if the next generation is all about tech, well, that is most welcome, indeed. There are many points that could use improvement in the current-gen Zoe, such as the battery that does not support ultra-fast charging or the engines that could use a performance boost. Depending on the particular trim version, the Renault Zoe currently ships with 88, 92 or 108 horsepower at its disposal (66, 69, and 81 kilowatts, respectively).
Aside from the above, the car could use a much larger battery unit, since the current 41 kWh one runs out of juice after approx. 300 kilometers (186 miles). More standard options would also be nice. That said, rumors already circulate that the alleged 2020 Renault Zoe will be getting a radar-based automatic emergency brake system, lane control and a few other similar features in all trim versions.
Reporter Artem Sukhanov