Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Miles per pound (mpp) Miles per pound (mpp)

Electric motors, home charging 23.3 - 28.7 mpp
Electric motors, public charging 11.7 - 14.3 mpp
Low figures relate to the least economical version; high to the most economical. Based on WLTP combined fuel economy for versions of this car made since September 2017 only, and typical current fuel or electricity costs.

Fuel economy

Electric motors 3.5 - 4.3 miles/kWh
  • Renault says only £3-£7 for a full charge
  • Competitive finance costs
  • Low mileage drivers would be better in a cheaper hatchback

Renault Zoe running costs are extremely low – including free road tax and very cheap company car costs. Plus you can have a 7kW wallbox charger installed for nothing.

The price of a charge will vary on how much you pay for your electricity and which version of the Zoe you own, but the manufacturer quotes a maximum figure of £7 for a full charge, or £3 overnight on an Economy 7 tariff.

Post-2019 cars also enjoyed a £3,000 uplift in residual value over three years, owing to increased desirability and more tech on board, which should keep monthly costs down.

Renault no longer offers a battery lease programme; the 2019 updated Zoe comes with a 52kWh battery regardless of specification, and this is included in the price with an eight-year, 100,000 mile warranty.

Factor in additional battery costs for a used Zoe

Other than the cost of financing the car itself (which is broadly in line with equivalent hatchbacks), you also need to pay extra for the battery.

There were two options here – buy it outright with the car, or lease it from Renault – and the first option means no mileage limit and an eight year/100,000-mile guarantee.

The second option was by far the more popular, and traditionally guarantees a higher residual battery capacity after eight years.

How long does it take to charge?

How long is a piece of string? Without being awkward, this really depends on several factors - there have been several different battery sizes in the Zoe’s lifetime and lots of different ways to charge them.

Post 2019 facelift

These cars are quite simple because they all come with the same 52kWh battery – expect a full charge in 9hrs 25mins from your 7kW wallbox, or three hours at a public 22kW charger. Plugging it into a domestic three-pin 13A socket will deliver a full charge in 30 hours.

There’s also the option to pay extra for an onboard 50kW DC charger – this will get you a 0-80% charge in 1hr 10mins.

If, however, you merely top your car up rather than fully charging it from empty every time (who does this?) Renault suggests the following figures:

  • 3kW (three pin) - full charge overnight
  • 11kW - 75 miles in two hours
  • 22kW - 75 miles in one hour
  • 50kW - 90 miles in 30 minutes

Charging a Renault Zoe before 2019

Previously your battery options were either 22kWh or 41kWh - with a fast charge option on the latter.

We’ve set out what times you could have expected below, and all figures here are laid out like this - 22kWh/41kWh/41kWh-quick-charge – for simplicity.

  • 3kW (three pin) - 9 hours/15 hours/15h 30 mins
  • 7kW - 3-4 hours/7h 30 mins/8h 30 mins
  • 22kW – 80% in 1h 45 mins/2h 40 mins/2h 40 mins
  • 43kW - 80% in 60 mins/1h 40 mins/65 mins.

Reliability

  • Generally promising, though the tech is still new
  • Few moving parts in an electric motor
  • Lots of parts shared with Renault Clio

It’s difficult to gauge just how good or bad the Renault Zoe’s reliability is likely to be. Of course, the company claims it’ll be good, but the reality is it is still relatively new technology. Having said that, the Zoe is one of the earliest electric cars to reach mass production. In seven years, it's had five recalls relating to build issues, none of which were unique electric car issues.

New buyers can therefore expect the usual failure rate for things like infotainment, heater and trim issues, and needn't worry about the novel electric motor and battery.

The potential upside is that electric motors and batteries use fewer moving parts than conventional engines. It it still remains to be seen how satisfied Renault Zoe customers will be, but residual values are strong.

One area that could be a concern is battery life – even if you lease a battery, Renault only guarantees it will retain a percentage of its original performance. Less charge means fewer miles. Only time will tell how this plays out.

Ongoing running costs

Road tax (12 months) £0
See tax rates for all versions
Insurance group 14 - 22
How much is it to insure?
Find out more about all electric cars here