Driven Renault Fluence ZE

6 Июн 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Driven Renault Fluence ZE отключены
RENAULT Fluence Electric Cars

Matt Campbell

Renault ZE

When someone says sedan , most of us probably Falcon , Commodore or Camry .

the word unconventional in front of the and you ll invariably hear someone the name of a French car manufacturer.

unconventional . Well, how about out an engine and replacing it with an motor? Or stretching the body of the car by 13 in order to fit a bank of batteries in the

That d be Renault s new Fluence ZE.

The ZE has just been launched in as Renault s first fully passenger car with the Turkish-built sedan now available powered by a plug-in drivetrain.

Under the ZE s metal skin is a energy commuter that boasts features including battery-swap (where the car can drop out a spent and replace it with a fully-charged as well as the usual plug-and-play system, which uses a output power source to the car s batteries in about eight

Unlike Mitsubishi s $50,000 and Nissan s $60,000 (est) buyers who fork out for the Fluence won t be purchasing the batteries that it. The Fluence ZE which is likely to be at less than $40,000 it arrives here from the quarter of 2012 will be sold as a shell, with the needing to take out a lease on the used to power the car with innovations company Better (costs TBA).

While all technowizardry is enticing, perhaps the intriguing aspect of the Fluence ZE is it looks, well, almost from the outside. There are a few such as blue chrome and a new-look front-end. and you ll also a filler cap on each front panel.

The ZE is also quite a bit than its sibling, and it s clearly when you compare the length of car s rear overhangs. The ZE measures metres in length (about 10 shorter than a Commodore), but its stretched rear-end, the boot has been significantly cut to 317 litres to the petrol model s 530L hold. And there s no spare either buyers have to do with a repair kit instead.

The interior of the car is also relatively and at first glance looks identical to the petrol version. a little closer, though, and the are noticeable there instrument are blue-ringed, there s no tachometer it s by an energy gauge that the current battery charge and the on-board computer includes a of data such as instantaneous and energy consumption, battery and discharge and range to empty.

It s with dual-zone climate Bluetooth connectivity, satnav, headlights and wipers and cruise with speed limiting, and s a decent amount of storage the cabin.

The interior does, suffer from the same as the regular Fluence back passengers will feel thanks to the car s sloping roof-line, the front seats could be described as fat man s chairs they re and firm on the squab and lack support on the backrest.

The regular does nothing much to the senses when it comes to but the plug-in version s drivetrain with it a whole new level or

The electric motor produces of power and 226Nm of almost-instantaneous (pulling power) that is to the driver at the press of the right The engine whirrs to life, out at about 11,000rpm and topping out on the at an electronically-limited 135km/h. You won t get anywhere the car s claimed 185km range if you it like that, however.

so, it s quite a thrill planting right foot in the Fluence ZE you a bit mischievous doing it and there s pleasing about listening to the whiney note of the motor and the battery meter drop your eyes.

However, the ZE s manners do leave a bit to be desired.

The front wheels tend to under acceleration as they to contain the heft of the electric s torque, and while the traction system kicks in quickly to control it, it could be unnerving for experienced drivers.

Another compromise is the ZE s steering. At cruising it feels light and a little while driving more sees the steering wheel tug to either side under and kick back clumsily mid-corner bumps.

We also some road noise, it s hard not to in a car that runs silently under a light

While we can t speak for how the car will under local conditions, our car s rear suspension felt fidgety, even on smoother The back-end has been stiffened up to with the extra weight of the pack (the rear is 130 kilograms heavier) and it is reflected in the way the car through corners, feeling tail-heavy when tackling

But from what Renault a good deal of common tells us, the Fluence ZE isn t likely to be the of car that appeals to someone who the on-road ability of, say, a RS250.

Remove the racing and plonk on the lid of logic, then, and you re left with is a car that is and functional enough to make think differently about the of cars they associate plug-in mobility.

And, more importantly, a car that a good insight into the five-seat family sedan of the near) future will be

29 comments so far

Shame about the and the boot, and the range.

But I like the that are swappable, and the fact it’s 90% a petrol car, the petrol engine. I await the when electric cars are as good as petrols. Until I eagerly keep watch at stepping-stone cars.

Commenter Yaz and time October 22, 2011,

So when you get a puncture do you suffer Flat-ulence?

Battery packs are expensive and and are usually placed between the and rear wheels for better distribution and balance. Safety is an issue. Do Better Place a viable business model, as has only limited market

Pricing will depend on subsidy on both the battery and the swap and go stations.

Commenter of Solace Location Melbourne and time October 22, 2011,

I’m not sure why the range is highlighted in this article.

it’s just common that driving less will waste more The articles on petrol cars say if you accelerate as fast as you can up to an illegal top fuel consumption will from a claimed 6L/100km up to

Secondly, an expansion on the services by the battery swapping company, Place, will dispel any of needing a large range in a When they install a spot at home and another at every time you get in your car you have a 100% full offing the maximum range. The is most people in their lives will be able to the notion of refueling on the road a huge leap forward in

On the rare occasion you do need to beyond 185km in a single a swap over can be done as quickly as a fuel stop, with in car service and no fuel The EV wins the convenience argument down, as you will hear any owner who has actually experienced it, than the opinions of skeptics are just complaining without any on the topic.

Any complaint about should be that the batteries are too large, and therefore wasteful in and too expensive. In reality, most of us get by on a 50km battery. I’d need half that.

Steven Location Melbourne and time October 22, 2011,

Steven, the range is highlighted the Fluence boasts an oversize pack in the boot that is removed ie swapable so it can get the ‘up to 185 km It is a design feature (and The article points out that by a conventional large car, a heavy IC engine from the and putting an ewually heavy pack in the boot you affect and driving dynamics.

I personally support hybrid as smaller engines and battery can be used.

Mobile phone and manufacturers cannot standardise packs. What makes you the worlds car companies will? Car at work? Dream on.

Commenter of Solace Location Melbourne and time October 24, 2011,

PS. Our workplace already has 4 charging Dream on.

Commenter OGU Date and October 24, 2011, 9:41AM

of Solace, you seem remarkably on these matters, a real Did you also predict the failure of the phone?

Perhaps a little reading might reveal the of the vehicle is not adversely affected, nor is the or perhaps you’ve already one top form your expert

The ‘half way house’ of hybrid was a short term solution. it’s time for full emissions solutions. From I understand, presently no other brand has a broader EV program Renault.

I also read have invested over Euro into the technology. appears to be the type of leadership required to break the current on fossil fuels.

Commenter OGU and time October 24, 2011,

Convention dictates that all in electric cars will an ‘e’ in front of the name.

the correct name for the vehicle at is the e-Fluence.

RENAULT Fluence Electric Cars

The front wheels to spin under acceleration as struggle to contain the heft of the motor’s torque, and while the control system kicks in enough to control it,

That is a poor excuse for a computerized driveline. Surely, someone have thought to program the to know that dumping like that is not going to in a stationary vehicle. I mean pretty much standard for all cars with electric

As for swap-able battery packs:

an $8,000 battery pack, a network of $10million closely swap-and-fill stations in order to a $15 of lump of energy is staggeringly Then there is the considerable issue with disposal of such a huge volume of metals etc.

Commenter Date and time October 24, 1:16PM

OGU Your workplace may 4 charging points. Please us for what vehicles and how many have them.

I make no on iPhone, iPad, iPod or Having been interested in Vehicles for decades I support innovation and production. There is no solution’ to personal transport.

As to this sounds like end too heavy to me.

our test car’s suspension felt quite even on smoother surfaces. The has been stiffened up to deal the extra weight of the battery (the rear is about 130 heavier) and it is reflected in the way the car behaves corners, feeling notably when tackling twists.

The wheels tend to spin acceleration as they struggle to the heft of the electric motor’s and while the traction control kicks in quickly enough to it,

Renault is like most car and is trying to make viable EV.

I the Swap and Go business model. are not as useless as you make out. And the fiction that charging is to be only from renewable

My credentials, RD in Solar Wind and electricity generation. Whats

Commenter Quantum of Solace Melbourne Date and time 24, 2011, 2:48PM


you for illustrating the point I was making I said . the opinions of skeptics are just complaining without any on the topic.

Firstly, I said the range not the range. Of course you report the But, highlighting inefficient could be done with any train, but such criticisms done with ICE vehicles the anti-EV bias.

Secondly, if you anything at all about EV infrastructure you know Better Place government and business contracts all the world. They will the defacto standard because companies wouldn’t be dumb to use a plug which cannot the available network. It would be selling a fridge with a new of wall socket nobody

Compatibility is solved before you

Better place use only renewables, so dismissing that is wrong.

As for charge points at that’s what you get when you buy the They install a charger at work carpark and another at home. These are 100% facts and you still argue them showing absolute combined with total

Commenter Steven Location Date and time October 24, 3:54PM

The safety issue I was to was not about the vehicle dynamics but the associated with having the ‘in the boot ‘ of between the front and rear In a rear end collision they are vulnerable. The cells are are arranged in to give high voltage.

has some good points. by talking a large IC car and badly it hasn’t enhanced EV development.

Quantum of Solace Location Date and time October 24, 3:59PM

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