Feeds

Renault Fluence ZE

The first affordable, practical electric car

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

SANS - Survey on application security programs

First Look With Renault-Nissan now having splurged €4bn (£3.4bn) on its e-car projects, it’s about time we saw some iron beyond the frankly rather too US-oriented Leaf. That time has now arrived: Renault officially unveiled the Fluence in Lisbon last week.

Renault Fluence ZE e-car

The Fluence won’t be the first Renault e-car we see in the UK. That honour will go to the funky little two-seat Twizy ZE that should arrive in right-hand drive form in March 2012. The Fluence four-door saloon will follow early in the summer followed by the B-class Zoe ZE hatchback a few months later.

The Fluence ZE is the first on show thanks to Renault’s deal with e-car supplier Better Place. It has ordered more than 100,000 of the vehicles, primarily to lease out in Israel and Denmark.

Renault Fluence ZE e-car

With the exception of the electric-blue badge and headlight detailing, the Fluence ZE looks very similar to the regular Fluence, which we don’t get in the UK because it’s a saloon version of the Megane hatch and we Brits don’t buy small four-door cars.

Thanks to the vertical battery pack that sits just aft of the rear suspension - it weighs 280kg, deliverers 400V and holds 22kWh of juice - the Fluence ZE is actually a couple of inches longer than the conventional car.

Renault Fluence ZE e-car

To my eyes, the extra length improves the visual balance of the car but it doesn’t alter the fact that the battery pack seriously intrudes on boot space.

Vertical? Indeed, because the Fluence ZE works with Better Place’s battery-swap stations that can yank out the empty battery and replace it with a fresh one in under three minutes - less time than it takes to top up a conventional tank of fuel.

Renault Fluence ZE e-car

It’s highly unlikely we'll ever see these battery swap stations in the UK - outside of large Renault dealers at least - but they are a key part of the Better Place initiative. It's a novel solution to the problem of e-car range and it shows that we're not going to be forced into a world of charging up cars at home, at work and on the street. There can be a role of 'filling stations' in the e-car era, and a EV need not be severely limited by range.

Of course, whether anyone will have the nous and - crucially - the cash to build out a network of battery swap stations in this country is another matter entirely. And I have my doubts that car makers will have the wit to realise they need to adopt a standard battery form-factor. But it's an impressive concept none the less.

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Next page: Driving range

More from The Register

next story
Most Americans doubt Big Bang, not too sure about evolution, climate change – survey
Science no match for religion, politics, business interests
So, just how do you say 'the mutt's nuts' in French?
Vital linguistic question interrupts LOHAN spaceplane mission
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
STEALTHY NANOROBOTS dress up as viruses, prepare to sneak into YOUR BODY
Cloaking techniques nicked from viruses tackle roadblocks on way to medical frontier
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.