Renault Leads the way at EcoVelocity

Whilst undertaking official launch duties today at EcoVelocity, London Mayor Boris Johnson swapped his usual pedal power for an equally emission-free mode of transport today, as he test drove Renault’s 100% electric Fluence Z.E. saloon to lead the opening parade.

The Mayor led a pack of electric and low-carbon vehicles around the green motoring festival’s dedicated test circuit in the UK’s most affordable electric car, Renault’s stylish, five-seat Fluence Z.E as it made its UK public show debut. The Mayor Boris Johnson was at the event promoting his Source London network of charge points and membership scheme. Source London is the capital’s charging network boasting 200 points and with plans for 1300 by 2013. The Mayor also announced that EcoVelocity customers would receive a discount £10 Source London membership rate over the course of the event, saving £90.

Mayor Boris Johnson, said: ‘I was delighted to try out one of Renault’s electric vehicles and glide it silently around the EcoVelocity test track. Trying out cutting edge vehicle technology is what Europe’s largest green car show is all about. To help people opt for a greener motor, my Source London electric charge point scheme is being showcased here too.’

During his tour of the show, Boris also spoke to Renault UK’s Managing Director, Thierry Sybord, on the company’s plans to support his electric vehicle vision with its four-strong family of electric vehicles for the capital and the rest of the country for the next 12 months, as well as get his first look at the French marque’s unique Twizy.

The ideal solution for inner city and suburban eco-driving, not to mention parking, Twizy features two seats, one behind the other, a range of up to 62 miles on a single charge, and costs from only £6,690 including VAT. Its monthly battery hire cost is £40 including VAT for a three year and 4,500 miles per year agreement.

EcoVelocity is a four-day event being held at Battersea Power Station in London to enable the general public to get behind the wheel of a variety of ecological cars all in one place. While they are there, visitors will get to look around static display vehicles such as Renault’s own Fluence Z.E. saloon and Kangoo Van Z.E., the world’s first electric van produced by a mass-market manufacturer, as well as drive them around the show’s dedicated 0.8 mile long test circuit.

The Fluence Z.E. is a four-door saloon that goes on sale in the UK during the first half of 2012, priced from only £17,850 on-the-road, after the deduction of the £5,000 Plug-In Car Grant. Renault’s innovative strategy of allowing its Z.E. owners to hire the lithium-ion battery to keep the upfront cost of its products as affordable to all as possible is already being well received. The idea removes any anxiety over battery longevity and replacement cost, and in the case of Fluence Z.E. means a monthly hire cost of £69.60 per month including VAT, based on 9,000 miles per year and a three-year agreement.

It’s the first electric medium-sized production saloon and has already caught the imagination of drivers who want the practicality and looks of a traditional car, while running a vehicle that’s economical and environmentally-friendly.

At the same time, Renault has received many pre-orders for the Kangoo Van Z.E. as it has the same carrying capacity (ranging from 3 to 3.5m3), the same payload (650kg) and the same high standard of comfort as the ICE version.

Thierry Sybord said: “As the manufacturer of the first complete range of EVs, we’re naturally delighted that Boris Johnson and Source London took such an interest in our products and chose Fluence Z.E. to open the show. Both are passionate supporters of greener transport for a cleaner and healthier London, so it was wonderful to see the Mayor enjoying his drive of Fluence Z.E. so much. Who knows, maybe we can tempt him to swap his bike for a Twizy in the not too distant future. We’ve already had a huge amount of interest from customers in our range of electric vehicles and look forward to even more after this positive endorsement, including the next few days at EcoVelocity itself.”

Lifestyle Renault Presents Renault’s Hat-Trick Of Offers

With fuel costs forever on the rise, one less thing to worry about this summer is the cost of a new car. Lifestyle Europe is delighted to be able to offer motorists the chance to own a brand new car from the very limited edition Renault Pzaz range, from as little as £6,795.

Available across the three popular models, the Renault Pzaz range allows customers the luxury of owning a brand new car at the cost of many used price equivalents. Priced at £6,795 for a new Twingo, £7,995 for a Clio, and just £9,995 for a Mégane, the offers are amazing, and available directly from your local Lifestyle dealership.

“This is such a fantastic and unbelievable offer” says Peter Isted, Lifestyle Europe’s M.S. “Our customers can purchase a brand new car without the worry of huge costs met by immediate depreciation as soon as they drive off the forecourt.  With the most expensive of the Pzaz range only reaching £9,995, the prices are suited to budget-conscious buyers.”

The limited edition models are not only fantastically discounted, but Renault hasn’t even skimped on features. Additions, such as front fog lamps, electric windows and 60:40 folding rear seats, which are normally chargeable extras, come as standard on the generously priced Clio Pzaz model.

For those seeking a sporty look, the beautifully designed sports chassis of the Renault Twingo Pzaz is the car for you. The Pzaz Mégane doesn’t run short of features either, with electronically adjustable heated door mirrors and air conditioning included as standard and an upgraded sound system.

Each of the three Pzaz cars are labelled as being eco-friendly, meeting the strict Renault eco2 requirements. In fact, the Twingo produces so little emissions that road tax for this vehicle is actually free- saving owners an additional £115 a year against the lowest chargeable road tax license.

The Pzaz range is available only until the 30th September and really is a special offer. For more details on this range, why not pop into your local Lifestyle Renault dealership, or visit Lifestyle Europe for further details.

Megane Renaultsport 256 Trophy Takes on the Nurburgring

Renault releases pricing and specification for Espace 2011


Subtle facelift includes LED lights and new equipment, including

> Carminat TomTom® Live satellite navigation
> Savings of up to £3,005 (Espace dCi 175) available compared to former range
> 2.0 dCi 150 emissions slashed by 18g/km to 170g
> Espace and Grand Espace versions priced from £24,495 to £28,495
> Euro 5-compliant 2.0 dCi 150 and 175 FAP engines, including one

Automatic Transmission

> Available to order 8th November and in showrooms from January 2011

Renault has refined the enduring appeal of its luxurious Espace for 2011, with subtle styling revisions, greater levels of equipment and lower pricing, from £24,495 and savings of up to £3,005 available.

With more than 1.2 million sold in the last 26 years, the Espace continues to attract customers through a winning combination of interior flexibility, luxury and refinement. These values are enhanced still further in the latest version, principally through new equipment and revised diesel engines.

Renault’s emblematic MPV now comes with LED technology, while its new headlights harmonise with the striking new Pearl Blue body colour and gloss black exterior trim details. On the inside, it also now benefits from the Carminat TomTom® Live real-time satellite navigation system.

In keeping with the times, the CO2 emissions of the core-range dCi 150 engine have been slashed by 18g/km from 188 to 170g/km, thanks notably to work on combating friction and carefully-selected gear ratios.

Exclusive high-end appeal

A new range structure makes Espace’s emblematic positioning as a practical, high-end MPV even easier for customers to understand. The Dynamique TomTom delivers a high standard of safety and comfort-enhancing features which match the expectations of families and business users seeking seven identically comfortable seats and a modular interior layout.

Its extensive list of features includes sport-style upholstery featuring extra side support and exclusive Teflon® protection, the fully-integrated Carminat TomTom® Live navigation, as well as a new gloss black interior trim.

In addition to the high levels of core equipment, one of Espace’s key strengths, its almost limitless modularity, remains intact, thanks to 10 aluminium tracks in the floor which enable the interior and boot space to be adapted in line with the number of passengers and luggage being carried.

On the outside, the headlights now incorporate LED daytime running lights and the range of seven body colours includes a new, striking Pearl Blue. Renault Espace’s premium positioning is further underpinned by its new 17-inch Eptius and Novadis alloy wheels.

Befitting a premium model designed to carry its occupants in unrivalled style, a wide range of options are available to customise its interior and exterior look to serve even the most discerning tastes.

Other notable options includes an opening tailgate window for £320, bi-xenon directional headlights at £650, and the perfect accompaniment for children, a DVD system with two 16.9” screens integrated into the rear of the front headrests for £1,500. Lastly, thanks to a vast surface area of 2.46 square metres, the electric panoramic glass sunroof at £1,300, provides an exceptionally bright cabin and impressive view out for all passengers.

An optional, lavish Initiale Lux Pack is also available for £3,500 on the top-of-the-range Grand Espace dCi 175 Auto FAP. Among its many items are multi-functional TunePoint for portable music players, Carminat TomTom Western Europe mapping, metallic paint, front parking sensors and full leather upholstery. Rounding off its array of features and, in keeping with the opulent ambience, four rear seats with armrests are fitted in place of five, for even greater levels of space.

A sharp fall in CO2 emissions

Renault Espace’s powertrain range has also been modified following the introduction of Euro 5 legislation. The two-litre dCi diesel is available in a choice of two power outputs: dCi 150 and dCi 175, the latter mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The combined cycle CO2 emissions of the core dCi 150 engine has been reduced by 18g/km from 188g/km to 170g/km, thanks principally to work on combating friction and revised gear ratios. Versions with automatic transmission boast welcome emissions savings, too, and now claim just 189g/km of CO2.

Full pricing for the Espace and Grand Espace 2011 range is given below. The cost to upgrade from Espace to Grand Espace is £1,500.


Model


Engine


CO2

g/km


MPG combined


BIK


OTR Price

Espace Dynamique TomTom

2.0 dCi 150 FAP

170

43.5

25%

£24,495

Espace Dynamique TomTom

2.0 dCi 175 FAP Automatic

189

39.2

28%

£26,995

Grand Espace Dynamique TomTom

2.0 dCi 150 FAP

170

43.5

25%

£25,995

Grand Espace Dynamique TomTom

2.0 dCi 175 FAP
Automatic

189

39.2

28%

£28,495

The Espace 2011 range is available to order from 8th November ahead of showroom launch in January 2011.

Silverstone and Renault Team Up for New Teen Drive


Silverstone has teamed up with Renaultsport to provide a new driving experience, Rookie Drive, to provide essential driver training for teenagers.

The Rookie Drive road skills initiative provides an ideal opportunity for teenagers aged 13 years and over to get their first experience behind the wheel of a car.  And not just any car, but today’s hottest of hot hatches, the Clio Renaultsport 200 Cup.

Rookie Drive is priced at just £45 and takes place in a controlled environment at Silverstone with expert guidance from Silverstone’s fully qualified driving instructors.  Students will take away a certificate along with new found skills after the two-hour course.

Richard Phillips, Managing Director of Silverstone Circuits, said, “Silverstone is delighted to extend its range of driving experiences to now offer professional driver training for teenagers.  They will learn skills that will give them a head start as well as being a fun experience, and they’ll certainly have that in the new Clio Renaultsport 200 Cup”

Renault to produce Electric Fluence in Bursa, Turkey


Following the announcement last week of the production site for the future electric, zero-emission Kangoo Van, Renault has now announced that the electric version of Fluence will be manufactured at the OYAK-Renault Bursa plant in Turkey. Production will start in the first half of 2011.

Unveiled as Fluence Z.E. Concept, the electric vehicle (EV) will be produced on the same production line as the conventionally-powered versions of Fluence. As at Maubeuge, where the Group will produce electric, petrol and diesel Kangoos, this option will limit the entry price of the programme and ensure an industrial fast start, while ensuring top-level quality.

Producing the future EV at Bursa allows Renault to benefit from the site’s excellent performance on quality, cost and lead times, along with local sourcing. As a result, the Group will be able to market the zero-emission saloon at the same attractive price as internal combustion models.

Scoring high on elegance and comfort, Fluence is a midsize saloon aimed at strengthening Renault’s international presence. Owners of the electric model will have three battery charge options: standard charge, rapid charge and ‘QuickDrop’ battery exchange. Renault will launch the Fluence EV first in Israel and Denmark, followed by other countries, from the first half of 2011.

Renault has now revealed the four production sites for its future EV range. The city car previewed by Zoé Z.E. Concept and the electric Kangoo will both be produced in France, at Flins and Maubeuge respectively. The vehicle based on Twizy Z.E. Concept will be built in Valladolid, Spain.

Fully aware of the issues involved in sustainable mobility, Renault has decided to mass market a complete range of affordable zero-emission electric vehicles starting in 2011.

Renault Revives Giordini


The little blue bombshells with two white stripes are back. The famous Gordini name was a symbol of French success that thrilled several generations of motorists who were thirsty for sporty sensations at the wheel of a fun car. The French blue, white stripes and front panel inset with four round headlights all contributed to an eternal identity that is an important part of Renault’s sporting heritage.

In a few months, new Gordini-badged versions will strengthen Renault’s offering in the compact sports segment injecting additional joie de vivre.

The fashionable and sporty Gordini label still possesses its exclusive, sport-oriented values. The Gordini versions are derived from sports models that are already renowned for their outstanding performance.

Twingo Gordini will be unveiled on 25 November at L’Atelier Renault on the Champs Elysées in Paris as part of the ‘Christmas in Blue’ exhibition. It will be launched next spring. Clio Gordini will be launched a few months later.

GORDINI: RENAULT’S SPORTING HERITAGE

Amédée Gordini, who developed almost 200,000 Renault vehicles over a 20-year period, achieved some of the brand’s greatest sporting achievements.

Born in 1899, within a year of Louis Renault building his very first vehicle, Amédée Gordini was fascinated by automobiles and motor racing from a very young age. After working as a racing mechanic in his teens, Gordini developed his own sports racing and Grand Prix cars before being engaged by Renault in the mid-1950s. The Renault 8 Gordini was one of his most successful and iconic creations, finishing 1st, 3rd, 4th and 5th in the 1964 Tour of Corsica rally. In 1966, the 1300cc version heralded the Gordini Cup one-make race series, the blueprint for all single-make motorsport championships.

GORDINI: DRIVING THE DECADE

The R8 Gordini delighted lovers of fun driving for a whole decade and even featured in French films alongside famous stars including Romy Schneider, Alain Delon and Lino Ventura.

This small sports saloon was a big hit with the younger generation of drivers and the trend had been set. Gordini became a symbol of success for a whole generation and embodied a state of mind – the spirit of a triumphant France that shared its successes with everyone.

With its elegant finish and strong design codes, the Gordini label offers a fresh interpretation of Renault’s sporty values.

Renault naturally opted to build on the reputation of Renault Sport Technologies (RST) to transform the Gordini legend into a reality. Renault’s sports division has prolonged the Gordini heritage through its renowned expertise in motor sport and the development of sports models.

RST is the world’s leading organiser of motor sport events. Since 2005, almost 3 million fans have attended World Series by Renault meetings, the Mégane Trophy and Clio Cup races and special events for motor sport enthusiasts. RST is a leading player in the motor sports sector.

Both in competition and series production, Renault’s sports models, such as the Mégane Renaultsport, Clio Renaultsport and Twingo Renaultsport, developed by RST, are acknowledged as figuring amongst the best-performing vehicles in their sectors.

New Renault Scénic Wins The Coveted 2009 Golden Steering Wheel Award



New Renault Scénic has won the 2009 Golden Steering Wheel award for MPVs. This prestigious award is given by the German daily Bild am Sonntag and by the readers of Auto Bild and similar European magazines circulated in 25 countries.

New Renault Scénic ran away with the victory, racking up 30.6% of the votes to win this year’s MPV category. In all, more than 250,000 readers from 25 European countries took part in the vote.

Some 46 vehicles from six categories fought it out in the competition, which took place for the 34th time since 1976. Readers chose the winners of the supercar and MPV categories directly, on a range of criteria including styling, design, comfort, roadholding, safety, quality and environmental performance.

Patrick Pélata, Chief Operating Officer of Renault, received the Golden Steering Wheel in Berlin, “It is a great pleasure to receive this prize. Auto Bild readers are very demanding drivers, so this award is a precious testimony of the qualities of our New Scénic, which it is currently the most sold MPV in Europe.”

Scénic invented this segment 13 years ago. Launched in June 2009, New Scénic is currently Europe’s second best-selling MPV, just 1,200 units behind the leader, with a 14% share of the market. As announced recently, it is expected to regain its leadership position in the compact MPV segment in Western Europe by the end of the year.

Renaultsport Clio 200 Cup

Renaultsport Clio 200 Cup
Facelift and power hike make hot hatch champ better than ever

Tinkering with a winning formula is a recipe for disaster, so has Renaultsport managed to improve on the excellent Clio 197 Cup?

To broaden its appeal, the new-look line-up has been revised. The Renaultsport Clio 200 features softer suspension than before and comes loaded with kit as standard. At £16,750, it’s designed for hot hatch fans who like a bit of comfort.

Thrill seekers should concentrate on the 200 Cup tested here. With its stripped-out cabin and firmer suspension, it is the most focused Clio yet. Its chassis settings come as a £400 option on the flagship, but the raw 200 Cup costs £15,750 – so it’s the most affordable way to join the hot Clio club. That all makes sense, but we’re not convinced by the supermini’s new nose.

While the gloss black trim and flattened profile provide a more distinctive look, it’s far from pretty. It stands out from lesser models, though, with wider front wings, a fresh rear diffuser and red brake calipers.

Climb inside and there are predictably few toys to play with. Air-con is a £550 extra – so electric windows come as a relief in hot weather – and the steering wheel adjusts for height only. Sporty details include a set of perfectly positioned drilled alloy pedals and a leather steering wheel and gearknob.

Our car also featured a pair of optional £850 Recaro seats. These are incredibly supportive and surprisingly comfortable on longer drives. Up front, power has risen from 194bhp to 197bhp. Tweaks to the 2.0-litre engine include the introduction of a new cylinder head, changes to the variable valve timing and fresh electronics – all of which gives 20 per cent more torque at lower revs.

You would expect the 200 Cup to be quick off the mark then – and so it proves. At the test track, the high-revving Renault sprinted from 0-60mph in seven seconds exactly – that’s half-a-second faster than its nearest competitor.

On the road, the Renault feels quicker than its rivals. Working its frenetic engine hard is an utterly absorbing experience as the power builds until its peak output is delivered at 7,100rpm. And the slick six-speed gearbox is the perfect match. The ride is as firm as you expect – the Cup chassis sits 7mm lower than the standard set-up and has stiffer springs and dampers.

You certainly feel bumps and ruts, but the suspension only crashes over the worst potholes and the trade-off is superb body control and agility. With its sharp responses and rev-hungry engine, the Clio comes alive on twisty back roads.

It’s not perfect, as the steering lacks the feel you get in the Fiesta, the body squirms under heavy braking and 23.4mpg economy is poor. Yet the 200 Cup is easily the most involving version of the third-generation Clio – and it will take some beating here.

To find out more about the Renault range please visit Lifestyle Renault

Source Auto Express

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