Renault Fluence to launch in autumn 2011

Renault's mid-range electric saloon, the Fluence, will launch at the end of next year in the UK with a price tag expected to sit between £20,000 and £25,000.

However, this projected price takes in the £5,000 Government electric car grant, and will not include the battery, which Renault is intending to lease to owners. A spokesman for the company said that this is to reassure those customers that are willing to be early adopters of the battery technology. However, the battery leasing is not expected to be cheap, with the spokesman saying the monthly costs will be comparable to those for fuelling an internal combustion engine. Renault is also likely to lease the car itself through the financial arm of its own company.
The full-electric vehicle is based on the Megane platform and the final pictures of the production car have been revealed for the first time. The final version is a four door saloon, but Renault has said there is no reason why it will not put the electric technology into other body styles such as a hatchback. It is also making an electric Kangoo van, a Twizy city car, and a supermini that will be a development of the Zoe concept it displayed at the Frankfurt show in 2009.

The Fluence uses a 70kw motor that gives it a theoretical range of 99 miles and a top speed of 81mph. The Kangoo, which is due to be the first of the four electric vehicles, is set to use the same electric powertrain and offer the same performance figures.

The Twizy and the Zoe are expected to arrive with customers in autumn 2011 and spring 2012 respectively. Potential customers can register their interest and pre-reserve a car at
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