The City K-ZE is an electric car based on the Kwid, meant to be sold globally
- The City K-ZE had a range of 250km when it was unveiled in concept form.
- It can be fast-charged from 0-80 per cent in 50 minutes.
- Gets an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment with connected tech and air quality control system.
- Wheelbase and boot space identical to the regular Kwid.
- India launch expected in future, could rival Maruti WagonR EV.
City K-ZE, the Renault Kwid-based electric car, has made its official debut at the 2019 Shanghai Motor Show. The EV shares its underpinning with the conventional Kwid and has an identical wheelbase as well.
The Renault City K-ZE can be charged from a 220V domestic socket, taking 4 hours to reach 100 per cent from zero. A fast charging option is available, which allows it to juice up from zero to 80 per cent in just 50 minutes. While Renault has not yet revealed the full range of the City K-ZE, its prototype version (K-ZE) had a NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) range of 250km. It is expected to offer a real-world range of around 200km per charge in the latest and more accurate WLTP (Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedure) cycle.
In terms of features, the City K-ZE comes fitted with an 8-inch multi-function touchscreen with remote access, online navigation and real-time car monitoring through a smartphone app. Renault will also offer online entertainment, 4G WiFi and smart voice recognition on the City K-ZE, which means availability of Renault Easy Connect technology. Keeping the rising levels of pollution in mind, the EV will also have PM2.5 sensors and an air quality control system which evaluates exterior and interior air quality and switches between the two for improving the air inside the cabin. The City K-ZE gets rear parking camera and tyre-pressure monitoring system as well.
In terms of size, the City K-ZE is almost identical to the India-spec Kwid. While the 300-litre boot space is the same as the Kwid, the 2423mm of wheelbase is only 1mm more than its petrol-powered counterpart. The City K-ZE has ground clearance of 150mm (laden or unladen is unspecified) while the Kwid has an unladen ride height of 180mm.
Looks wise, the City K-ZE gets a split headlamp setup up front with LED DRLs forming a halo over bumper-integrated main headlamp units. The side profile is almost similar to the regular Kwid with slightly flared square wheel arches, door cladding and roof rails, but with different dual-tone alloy wheels. Renault is yet to offer the Kwid (or Climber) in India with alloy wheels from-the-factory, and both these cars come with three locking nuts on the axle; the City K-ZE gets four. The bulbous rear end remains similar, except the new LED elements in the tail lamps, redesigned bumper and of course, no tailpipe sneaking out of it.
Renault will be producing the City K-ZE in China with its alliance partners Nissan and Mitsubishi, along with a Chinese local manufacturer, Dongfeng. The City K-ZE will be launched in China before the end of this year followed by a European market debut.
Renault says that the City K-ZE is a global product and there are chances that the carmaker will offer it in India as well in the future. In fact, the Kwid-based City K-ZE EV is part of Renault’s ‘Drive The Future’ six-year business plan (2017 – 2022) that was announced in October 2017. Under this plan, the French carmaker had announced it will leverage the CMF-A platform that has been heavily localised in India to launch four new models, including an EV! The EV in question is most likely going to be the City K-ZE. Expect it to be launched here in a couple of years and go up against Maruti Suzuki’s upcoming EV based on the Wagon-R. If launched, the Renault EV is likely to be priced below Rs 10 lakh.
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