Renault’s Kangoo Electric Is Quite Promising, Except It Requires A Subscription

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The electric Kangoo is Renault’s version of Ford Transit Connect Electric. Its a small van on a car frame and is very popular in the commercial fleets. Think of it as a vehicle for people who drive less than 100 miles per day and park their vehicles in the same spot every night. It doesn’t offer the most flexibility for everyone, but for some it’s quite promising, except for certain rental fees.

It’s available for order right now in France with delivers later this year in July. The electric motor produces 59 hp with 167-lbs/ft of torque and the battery capacity is 22 kWh. The official range is 100 miles, though maxing out the 1,430 lb payload will probably reduce range. The batteries, housed underneath the floor, have the exact same cells in use by the Nissan Leaf. Sounds pretty good, right? Except the nearly $32,000 price tag doesn’t include a battery, and you cannot buy one.

So how does the car actually..um..run? Well, you have to rent the battery; it costs $1,500 a year. So while the burden of paying for gas is gone, it costs an additional $125 a month, even if you don’t drive it. However, it’s not all sad news. Those who will use it as a work truck in a fleet can almost guarantee that the battery will always work — once it dies, you just rent another.

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