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Renault targets parity for electric vehicle pricing

Date: 24 April 2009   |   Author: Richard Yarrow

Keith Hawes

Renault is aiming to price its new electric models due in 2011 at the same level as their diesel equivalent.

Under the Government's electric vehicle (EV) incentive scheme announced earlier this month, buyers could get up to £5000 towards the cost of a new car.

Keith Hawes, Renault UK's fleet director, confirmed that if, for example, a diesel car cost £15,000 and the electric vehicle was £20,000, the Whitehall grant would mean the customer only paid £15,000.

"We will launch EV van and car versions of the Kangoo in 2011. However, the first Renault EV will be based on the Megane saloon, also due in 2011, but there's no decision on whether that will come to the UK because of the dominance of hatchbacks in the C-segment," explained Hawes.

Renault EVs will either be charged overnight at home or during the day at work. A third possibility involves a nationwide network of drive-in battery transfer stations, where flat powerpacks are swapped for charged ones. This exchange would take five minutes.

"We are in talks with a couple of our larger fleet users to discuss how we can meet their needs. The initial discussions are very positive. If you can make it work and it's operationally feasible then we believe we're pushing against an open door," Hawes added.