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Updated Renault Zoe pricing revealed

  • Renault's small electric car priced from £18,670
  • Upgraded hardware with up to 245-mile range from new battery
  • New dash with much improved quality and technology

The Renault Zoe has been on sale since 2012, which would normally mean it's time for an all-new replacement by now. Instead of that, Renault has opted for a raft of upgrades to boost the Zoe's appeal for 2020. That makes sense, as the little electric car's sales have been growing year after year, and is Europe's best-selling EV. So, the Zoe's platform is here to stay.

If it ain't broke, why fix it? Still, the front of the car bears a new face and all the lights are now LED across the range, but while the facelift looks familiar on the outside, it’s what’s beneath the bodywork that makes all the difference.

What’s changed?

As technology constantly improves, the battery capacity in the Renault Zoe is now more than double what the original 22kWh model had back in 2012.

Despite being the same physical size, the latest battery pack is upgraded to 52kWh. Aptly named Z.E.50, this takes the official electric range up to 245 miles under WLTP test conditions.

2020 Renault Zoe ZE50 badge

That’s a 25% increase over the outgoing Z.E 40 model and its 41kWh pack, with its claimed 186 miles. There is a 25kg weight penalty with this more powerful battery, but, while details on suspension and chassis settings are yet to be confirmed, the brakes should reign in the extra performance as you now get front and rear discs as standard.

The range of electric motors have been beefed up too. The R110 model introduced in the Zoe’s last update dramatically improved the Zoe’s mid-range performance, due to an 80kW motor developing 107hp and 225Nm of torque.

This continues to be offered and now serves as the entry-level motor in the range, while a 100kW motor, named R135, now serves as the flagship.

It offers the equivalent of 135hp, and torque is bumped up to 245Nm. As a result, the 0-62mph time will drop below 10 seconds. Mid-range performance will see a noticeable jump too, with the 50-75mph time dropping 2.2 seconds down from the R110, to 7.1 seconds.

How long does it take to charge?

The other big change relates to the socket behind the front diamond badge. What used to be an AC charge socket hidden behind here is now a CCS combination plug, allowing the choice of AC (alterating current) or DC (faster, direct current) charging. The AC socket allows the battery to recharge up to a maximum of 22kW of power, while the DC socket can charge up to 50kW.

Blue 2020 Renault Zoe CCS combination socket

Charge times using a 7kW wallbox will take 9 hours and 25 minutes from 0 to 100% battery power, while Renault estimates a 22kW charger will top up the Zoe’s battery with approximately 78 miles of range in one hour.

The full-fat 50kW DC terminals on motorway stations could see roughly see 93 miles of range added after a 30 minute charge.

Additional B mode available

A new driving mode has been introduced on the 2019 Renault Zoe and can be accessed by nudging the gearlever from D to B mode. This introduces the regenerative braking function, allowing the car to harness back some battery charge in heavy city traffic conditions with frequent stop-start manoeuvres.

2020 Renault Zoe automatic gearlever

We’ve seen this on the BMW i3 and Nissan Leaf before, allowing you to effectively drive the entire time with just the accelerator pedal, as the regenerative braking is far stronger than it used to be.

Major interior overhaul

The facelifted Zoe receives a redesigned dashboard using a mix of new materials and tech - it's a vast improvement over the old car.

There’s more than a hint of the new Clio in terms of design and structure (unsurprisingly), with a higher level of perceived quality. There’s a new steering wheel, gear shifter, electronic parking brake and two rear USB ports as standard, while textile dash inserts and seat fabric made from 100% recycled material and wireless charging are included higher up the range.

2020 Renault Zoe new dashboard

The driver’s display is now significantly larger, being a taller 10-inch screen, and can now also show sat-nav information. The touchscreen media display on the centre console is also vastly improved - and the biggest change over the old car - with a 9.3-inch portrait display that features both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and far crisper graphics.

This larger screen is standard GT Line models and optional on Iconic, with a smaller seven-inch display on entry-level Play models. 

When is the facelifted Zoe on sale?

The facelifted is available to order from mid-September 2019, although deliveries won't commence until January 2020. Prices start from £18,670 after the plug-in car grant, but you'l have to pay an extra monthly fee for battery leasing. However, if you want to buy it outright with the batteries taken care of with an eight-year, 100,000-mile guarantee, it'll cost £25,670 after the car grant. 

The higher-output R135 Iconic and GT Line models kick off from £20,620 and £21,620 respectively, or if you opt for the Full Purchase scheme it'll be £27,620 or £28,620. 

Entry-level Zoe Play models come with full LED lights, seven-inch touchscreen display, digital dash display, cruise control, automatic lights and wipers, 15-inch wheels and a free home wallbox. 

Iconic models add climate control, wireless phone charging, electric rear windows, recycled seat upholstery, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist and traffic sign recognition, larger wheels and parking sensors. 

GT Line models look a little sportier with diamond cut alloys, synthetic leather and cloth upholstery, blindspot warning, parking camera and the larger 9.3-inch Easy Link infotainment screen.

Blue 2020 Renault Zoe facelift rear three-quarter