Published on Friday 17 July 2020 in Van News
Renault has revealed the latest addition to its expanding LCV range – the ZOE Van. Built, as you'd expect from the name, on the same platform as the new ZOE passenger car, this van represents yet another choice for customers in the swelling electric van sector! However, this is one van that will definitely see some interest thanks to a high range, excellent warranty & smart looks. Vanarama van expert Tom Roberts reports.
Let's start with the ZOE Van's major plus point… the 245-mile WLTP range you get with the ZOE Car is carried over to the van conversion thanks to both vehicles using the same 52kWh battery & 80kW R110 motor. Range anxiety is not something you'll have to suffer through with the ZOE van!
Another major plus point is the 5-year (100,000-mile) warranty - the first 2 years feature unlimited mileage restrictions, while the remaining 3 have a 100,000-mile limit. Renault's confidence in its EV technology is also on display with the Z.E. 50 battery getting an 8-year (100,000-mile) warranty - that's an amazing boost for customers! Service intervals are also generous, pegged at every 12 months or 18,000 miles, whichever comes first.
A high range is a major tick in the box for commercial vehicle drivers considering an electric van, in just the same way that fast charging & good payloads will feature highly on their lists. Add in that excellent warranty & you can already see that the Renault ZOE Van offers customers an interesting zero-emission alternative to the Ford Fiesta & Vauxhall Corsa van conversions. Let's take a closer look.
Powertrain, Range & Charging
The All-New ZOE Van benefits from the same advanced powertrain featured in the regular ZOE car. This means the ZOE car's powerful 52kWh battery & 80kW R110 electric motor (offering that amazing 245-mile range on a single charge) is sat under the bonnet. The R110 motor delivers acceleration of 0-62mph in 11.4 seconds, which makes the ZOE Van a compelling choice for city driving with stop-start traffic & a perfect fit for tasks such as multi-drop deliveries with zero emissions.
Recharging is equally simple with the option of 50kW DC charging on both available trim levels - this allows a zero to 80% charge in a claimed 1 hour & 10 minutes. You can also opt for a 30-minute charge which will give you a 90-mile boost in range via the DC charger.
Like the ZOE Car, the vVan's charging port is snuggled behind the Renault badge on the front of the vehicle - you'll get a type-2 charging cable with the vehicle which allows 100% charge in just 3 hours on a 22kW public charger.
The ZOE Van is available in a choice of two models – Business & Business+. Both specs offer customers a standard equipment, with the usual opportunity to add more options at extra cost – including DC charging cables for faster charging.
As standard, Business trim includes:
- 10-inch TFT instrument cluster.
- 7-inch Easy Link infotainment screen with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto connectivity.
- Manual air conditioning.
- Electric front windows.
- Renault keycard with hands-free entry.
- Electrically adjustable heated door mirrors.
- Automatic headlamps & wipers.
- Full LED headlamps with C-shape daytime running light.
- 15-inch steel wheels with Michelin EV Energy Tyres.
- USB socket.
- Driver & passenger airbags.
- Isofix points on the passenger seat.
- Front fog lights.
- Cruise control with speed limiter.
- Z.E. Voice (low speed pedestrian warning).
The Business+ trim level adds even more, including:
- Satellite navigation.
- Wireless Smartphone Charging.
- Rear parking sensors.
- Rear parking camera.
- 100% recycled seat upholstery.
- Lane Keeping Assist (LKA).
- Lane Departure Warning (LDW).
- Automatic High Low Beam.
- Traffic Sign Recognition.
- Automatic Climate Control.
- Driver's one-touch electric window.
- Electrically adjustable heated door mirrors, electrically folding, finished in body colour.
- 16-inch alloy wheels with Michelin EV Energy Tyres.
Customers can upgrade the spec of Business+ models with the Technology Pack, which adds Renault's 9.3-inch portrait-oriented Easy Link touchscreen infotainment system, front & rear parking sensors, & a rear-view camera. Additionally, the Winter Pack is available, enhancing comfort in colder conditions with heated seats & a heated steering wheel.
The Loading Bay
The loading bay has been fashioned by removing the rear seats of the existing ZOE passenger car. A completely flat load floor & mesh bulkhead has been placed behind the front seats, while the rear doors enable access via the side of the vehicle (odd choice, but we'll see what customers make of it). The rear windows themselves are disabled & covered in an opaque film - which makes it look a little conspicuous.
A total load volume of one cubic metre is made possible by the 1,2m length in the load bay & a maximum load width of 1.1m. Maximum payload is rated at up to 387kg (Business) meaning small & bulky items can be carried in the load area with ease. All ZOE Vans feature protective rubber flooring in the load area with four anchorage points on the floor.
Renault's decision to turn the ZOE into a compact commercial vehicle is an obvious move to grab a slightly larger share of the LCV marketplace & complete their own electric LCV range, which already features large & medium offerings. I'm not knocking them for it, I think it's a smart move that will surely reap benefits.
The ZOE car is already well-respected, offering customers an electric car that can offer range, fast charging & comfort in one package without making too many compromises. Put this next to other conventional fuel small vans & it does lack in a couple of areas, however. Payload is lower than the Fiesta & Corsa equivalents, but with the transition to electric you expect just a little compromise in that area, & the decision to leave the doors there and not panel out the windows is an odd choice that might be seen by customers as an obvious security risk.
With that said, however, I feel like this might be the electric car-to-van conversion other manufacturers need to see to convince them that they're missing a trick if they don't do it too. There's going to be demand for small city-hopper electric vans & right now the Renault ZOE Van is the only option you can take seriously thanks to the range. I'll be watching this vehicle's sales figures with great interest.
If you're currently on the lookout for a new van, head over to our van leasing special offers page where you can choose between the best deals on small, medium or large vans – whatever suits your business best.