Renault Group

Past and present: the evolution of the electric car by Groupe Renault

08 January 2021
5 min
Discover the history of the electric car and Renault’s major involvement over the years, as well as where the brand is today. What electric cars does Renault produce, what are their differences, and could a hybrid Renault be the answer to your first step into the electric revolution?
by Renault Group

The history of Renault electric cars

The electric car is far from a recent innovation. The first electric vehicle was actually created 138 years ago by the French inventor Gustave Trouvé. One of the initial manufacturers to foresee its potential, Renault has never stopped accelerating electric technology. As early as 2009, the brand announced the arrival of four 100% electric vehicles by 2012 and has been driving electric innovation forward ever since.

Renault’s electric vehicle range

Because every driver has different needs, Renault’s electric cars each have their own advantages to offer. One of the first major players on the scene, Renault launched its first four affordable electric vehicles all the way back in 2012. With each new development, Renault technology and performance have improved, but the same Renault’s pioneering spirit remains imbued in every Renault electric car.

The Groupe Renault full electric vehicle list: find the perfect match

Which Renault electric vehicle is best suited to your specific needs?

Renault Twizy

The ultimate city vehicle, Renault Twizy is a fun and compact electric two-seater designed for zipping around the city. A firm favorite with urbanites who appreciate Twizy’s city-friendly compact size, a forerunner of urban electric mobility.

Renault ZOE

The latest version of the iconic ZOE is as stylish as ever. The award-winning Renault ZOE electric car includes even more range of up to 395 kilometers WLTP*, faster charging, and plenty of innovative smart features such as the B mode that allows for a more comfortable drive in traffic, and even increasing recharging capacities.

Renault Twingo Electric

Agility and playfulness are the key words for this new Renault electric car born for city driving and loved by drivers who enjoy its customizable character and agile maneuverability. Plus, the Twingo Electric can be charged on alternating current outlets of up to 22 kW, offering highly practical charging versatility: slow or fast charge, public or private charging stations.

Renault City K-Z.E.

This compact and affordable vehicle was designed for the Chinese market. Drivers love the Renault City K-ZE’s SUV style and smooth, clean lines that immediately identify the vehicle as a Renault. Plus, as a five-door city car, it ticks every box for electric families!


Exclusively for South Korea, Renault Samsung Motors unveiled the SM3 Z.E., the only electric sedan on the market, in 2017. It’s range of over 200 kilometers makes it ideal for both driving around the city, and getting away to the countryside on weekends.

Dacia Spring

Dacia’s first electric vehicle, the groundbreaking Spring makes electric mobility even more accessible. With a robust SUV style, its proportions nevertheless make it ideal for driving in and around the city. Arriving on the market in Autumn 2021.

The Renault hybrid range

Despite the success of its current electric cars, the brand doesn’t sit on its laurels! The Renault electric family continues to grow, in particular with a selection of hybrid vehicles. These offer customers the familiarity of a combustion vehicle and a best seller model, with the addition of new, electric technology for the future.

Clio E-TECH Hybrid

The Renault Clio hybrid offers the best of worlds with its new hybrid powertrain. The electric motor is perfect for enjoyable city driving and fuel efficiency, while the combustion engine offers peace of mind for longer trips.

New Renault Arkana E-TECH Hybrid

Europe’s latest arrival! An SUV with the sleek shape of a coupe, new Arkana is the first vehicle to be launched directly in a hybrid E-TECH version. It will immediately appeal to those who use their car a lot for short and longer journeys thanks to its optimal versatility.

Captur E-TECH Plug-in Hybrid

The Renault Captur E-TECH Plug-in hybrid is a compact SUV that offers all-electric power for daily driving, plus a combustion engine to ensure flexibility. The electric motor also harvests energy through regenerative braking – recharging itself as you drive. Or why not choose to charge at home with a Wallbox? Renault Plug-in hybrid is the first in its category to feature a dedicated charging socket. Plus, the Captur E-TECH is available in both hybrid and rechargeable hybrid models!

Megane E-TECH Plug-in Hybrid

Like the Renault Captur E-TECH Plug-in hybrid, the familiar Renault Megane station wagon now has maximum driving versatility thanks to its revolutionary rechargeable hybrid drive with a battery capable of powering everyday trips alongside a traditional combustion engine. Renault Megane E-TECH Plug-in hybrid is practical for both work and play!

Hydrogen-powered vehicles from Renault

Another of the most promising technologies for the future of mobility is hydrogen, and Renault already has two utility models on the market! Thanks to their zero-emissions, the Kangoo Z.E. Hydrogen and Master Z.E. Hydrogen are allowed into all Low Emissions Zones – a considerable advantage for businesses. Plus, the two models are also available in 100% electric versions.

Kangoo Z.E. Hydrogen

The popular utility van Kangoo is now available in a Kangoo Z.E. Hydrogen model: ideal for professionals with its quick charging times and long range, making it the perfect fleet vehicle for charging on-premises before heading out to work.

Master Z.E. Hydrogen

The Master Z.E. Hydrogen is used by professionals who want to invest in the future of green energy, and who have large loads to transport, sometimes a considerable way away or in cities with emissions-based vehicle restrictions. This Renault van now has triple the range of its predecessor, the Master Z.E.

Groupe Renault at the forefront of the mobility evolution

Groupe Renault remains a pioneer in the evolution of electric mobility, with uncontested expertise thanks to a decade of experience in the research, design and manufacture of electric vehicles. In fact, Renault’s electric cars make up 20% of all electric vehicles driven in Europe! With options for car sharing, rental, ever-increasing autonomy and a range of smart services to make life easier, it’s no wonder the electric vehicle is becoming a common sight on our roads.


*WLTP: Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure. The standard WLTP cycle corresponds to 57% of city journeys, 25% of suburban journeys and 18% of motorway journeys.

Copyrights: LEMAL Jean-Brice, DOROSZEWICZ Agnieszka, Renault Marketing 3D-Commerce, ARISTEI Alex, MARTIN-GAMBIER Olivier

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