Europe’s best-selling electric vehicle, the Renault Zoe, has reached its second generation and promises to be better overall compared to its predecessor.
A rival of sorts to the likes of the Peugeot e-208 and Opel/Vauxhall Corsa-e newcomers, the 2020 Zoe gets a 52 kWh battery that ensures a WLTP-certified range of up to 242 miles (389 km). With a 30 percent bigger capacity over the old one and identical dimensions, this lithium-ion battery also supports fast charging.
Using the new 50kW DC charging option for 30 minutes will give it a range of around 90 miles (145 km), whereas plugging it in a 22kW public charger for 1 hour results in a 78-mile (126 km) range. Charging it from 0-100 percent is an overnight process when using the 7kW Wallbox, which takes 9 hours and 25 minutes.
Another big update is the addition of the R135 motor, which delivers 100 kW (135 PS / 133 hp) and 181 lb-ft (245 Nm) of torque, hooked up to a single-speed gearbox. In this guise, the new Zoe takes 10 seconds to accelerate to 62 mph (100 km/h) and maxes out at 87 mph (140 km/h). From 50 to 75 mph (80-120 km/h), Renault says it needs 7.1 seconds, a 2.2 second improvement compared to the R110 electric motor, which carries over with 80 kW (110 PS / 108 hp).
Both versions of the car get the new ‘B mode’ driving function, which facilitates one-pedal driving. The ‘D mode’ remains an integrated part that will come in handy when the vehicle is traveling at a constant speed, outside cities. Switching between the two modes requires operating the new e-shifter, while other novelties include the new braking system and automatic parking brake.
Safety-wise, the 2020 Zoe is equipped with a generous suite of systems, like Active Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keeping Assist, Traffic Sign Recognition, Blind Spot Monitoring, Easy Park Assist, Auto-Hill hold and auto high/low beam headlights.
As far as the exterior design goes, the new Zoe is more of an evolution of the old car. Changes include the new grille, bumpers, standard LED lighting units at both ends, refreshed color palette and new wheel designs.
The cabin has however been significantly revamped, featuring a new dashboard layout and better materials. The infotainment system, with a 9.3-inch touchscreen, has been upgraded and there is now a standard customizable 10-inch TFT instrument cluster. Users have access to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity, two USB sockets in the rear and a wireless charging pad offered as an option.
Drivers can of course remotely access and operate some of the car’s functions using their smartphones. They can start or schedule the heating or air conditioning, check the battery range and charging status and pre-plan their journeys.