Groupe Renault unveils France’s first Smart Island on Belle-Île-En-Mer

  • Groupe Renault, Morbihan Energie, Les Cars Bleus and Enedis have joined forces to create FlexMob’île, an innovative programme aimed at accompanying the energy transition on the French island of Belle-Île-en-Mer.
  • This smart electric ecosystem is founded on three core activities, namely the sharing of electric vehicles, the stationary storage of solar energy and smart charging.
  • FlexMob’île sees Groupe Renault continue to develop the principle of smart islands, the first of which was Portugal’s Porto Santo.

Belle-Île-en-Mer (France), September 21, 2018 – In association with its partners the Belle-Île-en-Mer Community of Communes, Morbihan Energies, Les Cars Bleus and Enedis, Groupe Renault – a major player in the world of electric ecosystems – is delighted to unveil a brand new joint project known as FlexMob’île. The aim of this smart electric ecosystem is to facilitate the energy transition on the French island of Belle-Île-en-Mer which lies off the coast of southern Brittany. This initiative follows in the footsteps of the innovative Smart Fossil Free Island programme which has been operational since last February on the Portuguese island of Porto Santo in the Madeira archipelago.

Groupe Renault unveils France's first Smart Island on Belle-Île-En-Mer (Image: Renault)
Groupe Renault unveils France’s first Smart Island on Belle-Île-En-Mer (Image: Renault)

For the next 24 months, Groupe Renault and its public and private partners will be developing a smart electric ecosystem that has been conceived to reduce the island’s carbon footprint and increase its energy independence.

“We are thrilled to be collaborating with the Belle-Île-en-Mer Community of Communes, Morbihan Energie, Les Cars Bleus and Enedis on this project which is unprecedented in France. Our goal is the same as with Porto Santo. That is to say the implementation of global solutions that meet local needs using both tried-and-tested and more recent technologies. It will be possible to carry over the Belle-Île-en-Mer system not just to other islands but also to cities and suburban areas,” says Gilles Normand, SVP, Group Electric Vehicle Division.

Read more: Renault Media via Fuel Included news

Plug-in car grant axed for PHEVs and cut for electric cars

New rules for plug-in car grant means current crop of plug-in hybrids will be ineligible from November 9; grant for EVs drops by £1,000

Plug-in hybrid cars will no longer be eligible for the Government’s Plug-In Car Grant from November 9 2018, while grants for fully electric cars will be reduced from £4,500 to £3,500 at the same time.

The news comes as the Department for Transport (DfT) and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) confirmed Category 2 and 3 grants will end in November. That means PHEVs such as the Audi A3 e-tron and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, which were hitherto eligible for the grant, will no longer be so from 9 November.

In fact, none of the PHEVs currently on sale in the UK is capable of meeting the criteria necessary to qualify for the grant, making it effectively for fully electric cars only.

Category 2 cars emit 50g/km of CO2 or less and can officially travel for 10 to 69 miles on battery power alone; Category 3 cars emit between 50 and 75g/km of CO2 and can travel up to 20 miles on battery power alone. Such cars previously received a grant of £2,500, but this will cease next month.

Category 1 grants will still exist from November 9, but the amount contributed towards their cost by the Government will reduce from £4,500 to £3,500. Cars must be able to travel for 70 miles on battery power alone and emit under 50g/km in order to qualify as a Category 1 car, something no current PHEV can manage.

Read more: AutoExpress via Fuel Included news

Renault EZ-PRO: Urban delivery goes robo

In a world where fast paced urbanization means that more than 60% or 70% of the population, depending of the region, will live in towns and cities by 2030, moving people is not the only task that needs to be rethought. A new era is also beginning for transporting goods: rapidity, flexibility and reliability are the watchwords of the new requirements for consumers at a time that is also seeing a rapid rise in online purchasing. This is accompanied by ever faster and more accurate delivery times with increasingly strict regulatory constraints in towns and city centers.

Providing sustainable mobility for all, today and tomorrow is Groupe Renault’s credo. To accomplish this, we are committed to offering mobility solutions that meet the needs of the many and staying true to our DNA. Tomorrow’s mobility will be electric, connected, autonomous and shared. This naturally includes the delivery of goods, and in particular what is known as “the last mile”.

Renault EZ-PRO: Urban delivery goes robo (Image: J. Oppenheim/Renault)
Renault EZ-PRO: Urban delivery goes robo (Image: J. Oppenheim/Renault)

Our vision for the future of last-mile delivery builds on our experience of nearly 120 years in the utility vehicle domain and our passion for innovating in order to make our customers’ lives easier. It is nourished by our DNA which places people at the heart of the design of our vehicles. It is also based on our openness to partners, who we work with in an open innovation approach that makes it possible to go further as we explore new horizons.

This is what makes this vision unique. It is articulated around four strong axes:

  • We believe that urban last mile delivery sector is one of the most important areas to disrupt in order to create a future that is clean, free of un-needed congestion, and efficient.
  • We believe that commercial delivery is flexible, and that a same platform can be used either in B2B and B2C scenarios.
  • We believe that delivery of parcels has to be seamless. End users can choose precisely where, when and how to have goods delivered.
  • Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we believe the future of last-mile delivery still has a human touch – someone who remains an essential link in the delivery chain.

Renault’s vision is today illustrated by EZ-PRO, a robo-vehicle concept for last mile urban delivery that includes a concierge, in a robo-vehicle scenario with human touch.

Source: Renault Media via Fuel Included News

FELIX PROJECT IS ON A CHARGE TO HELP FEED LONDON’S MOST IN-NEED WITH NEW RENAULT KANGOO Z.E. FLEET

  • The Felix Project takes delivery of seven all-electric Renault Kangoo Z.E. panel vans
  • Donation of vehicles strengthens the partnership between Renault UK and the London-based food charity
  • New Renaults will allow the Felix Project to grow its collection and distribution operation significantly
  • The Felix Project’s central London operation fleet will now be 100 per cent electric
  • Zero tailpipe emissions, ease-of-use and size make the Kangoo Z.E ideal for the charity’s London routes
  • Renault Kangoo Z.E. is priced from £14,799, excluding VAT, after the Plug-in Van Grant

Renault UK is growing its support of the London-based Felix Project with the donation of a further seven all-electric Renault Kangoo Z.E. panel vans. This will allow the charity to expand its operation to provide the capital’s most disadvantaged inhabitants with fresh food.

The development strengthens the partnership between the manufacturer and The Felix Project, which was established in November 2017 with the initial donation of a single Kangoo Z.E.

One of Felix Project's Kangoo ZE electric vans (Imaged: Renault)
One of Felix Project’s Kangoo ZE electric vans (Imaged: Renault)

The additional vans will grow the charity’s fleet by more than 50%, enabling it to significantly increase the 20 tonnes of food they currently deliver each week. This is food which is fresh yet cannot be sold for a number of reasons, that they collect from supermarkets, wholesalers and other suppliers, and distribute free of charge to around 200 charities and schools throughout London. In turn, these organisations then provide meals, snacks or food parcels to those in need, including elderly or homeless people, struggling families, those with mental health issues, refugees and asylum seekers.

All of the vans will initially be based at the Felix Project’s central London operation. Vehicles that are already in-use in the depot will be allocated to the charity’s other sites with the result that the central operation’s distribution and collection service will be 100 per cent electric.

The constant stop/start for collections and drops, average journey lengths and the demanding nature of driving in the capital mean that the Kangoo Z.E. is the perfect vehicle for the Felix Project. Immensely easy to drive with users not having to worry about gear changes and enjoying instant response from the advanced drivetrain, the van is ideal for negotiating the city’s traffic, while also returning a significant saving on fuel costs and being exempt from the London Congestion Charge.

The ease-of-use is especially important to The Felix Project as the latest vans will not be assigned to one driver, but used by a variety of volunteers on evening runs into the capital. The Kangoo Z.E.’s payload of 640kg – near identical to that of its diesel counterpart – also makes it exceedingly versatile, the Felix Project’s existing Kangoo Z.E. is able to accommodate 32 crates of food, which is enough to deliver to four primary schools.

The Felix Project was established in early 2016 in memory of Felix Byam Shaw – the son of one of the charity’s founders – who died suddenly from meningitis in 2014. The idea for the charity was born out of Felix’s compassion for fellow youngsters who didn’t have his advantages and, in particular, after he played in a football match and discovered that some of the opposing team of 10-year-old boys from South London hadn’t had anything to eat that day.

Anne Elkins, Development Manager for The Felix Project’s school programme, said

“The new Kangoo Z.E.s will make a big difference to our operation, allowing us to plan more routes and also collect more donations that are made available on an ad hoc basis and which need to be collected in a short time frame. It’s great to have the extra capacity and the support from Renault.

“Our original Kangoo Z.E is a big hit with our drivers due to its manoeuvrability and being so easy to drive. The van really is a great fit for us as it does everything we need and adds another carbon efficient element to our operation’s ethos on protecting the environment by cutting down food waste and ensuring that good, nutritious food isn’t thrown away.”

Vincent Tourette, Managing Director, Groupe Renault UK, said:

“We’re exceptionally pleased to extend our support of The Felix Project. The charity is passionate in what it does and it’s a privilege for us to play a part in helping them to grow their operation and ultimately supply food to those in the capital who are in the most need. With its latest Kangoo Z.E. the Felix Project can extend their reach but also invest the majority of their current fuel and congestion charge costs back into other areas of the business.”

The Kangoo Z.E.33 has a real-world range of 124 miles and has a load capacity of up to 4.6m³, coupled with diesel-rivalling payload of up to 640kg. Together with the enhanced 33kWh battery, the Kangoo Van Z.E.33 benefits from an upgraded charger that reduces charging times and is twice as powerful as its previous one. The single-phase 7kW AC charger can take the new 33kWh battery to a full charge in just six hours, with the ability to ‘top-up’ the vehicle by up to 21 miles in just one hour. The Renault Kangoo Van Z.E.33 is available in a range of body styles, including Kangoo Van Z.E.33, Kangoo Maxi Z.E.33, Kangoo Maxi Crew Van Z.E.33 and Kangoo Maxi Crew Van Cab Z.E.33.

Source: Renault UK Press Office via Fuel Included news

Renault Zoe EV is the fastest selling used car in the UK

Auto Trader has revealed the Renault Zoe as the UK’s fastest selling used vehicle in July, taking just 18 days to shift off forecourts.

It is the first time a fully electric vehicle has topped Auto Trader’s national top 10 list of fastest selling used cars.

An electric hybrid variation of the Mitsubishi Outlander MPV beat petrol and diesel-powered counterparts to become the fastest selling used car in London last month, taking just 12 days to sell.

Read more: Motor Trader via Fuel Included News

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