Renault recently set a record for the longest distance driven by an electric car in 24 hours. A ZOE hatchback drove 1,005 miles in roughly that time. The test was conducted at France’s Aubevoye speed ring.
The Renault averaged 42 mph, which doesn’t sound like a record setting speed. However, that includes time the car spent stopped so it could recharge its batteries. Two cars were driven in the test, with 15 drivers going around the track in shifts.
The second car drove 936 miles. The ZOE has 89 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque, powering it to an electronically-limited top speed of 83 mph. The ZOE was first shown at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, and will go on sale in August. The electric Renault is only sold in Europe; in the UK it costs the equivalent of $21,200 after government incentives. Owners also have to pay a 70 pound ($109) monthly battery rental fee.
Helping the Renault team beat the record was a Chameleon charging system. The Chameleon is compatible with any power level or socket and, on its 43 kW setting, could charge the ZOE’s batteries to 80 percent capacity in less than 30 minutes. The record-setting car had to be charged nine times during the attempt.
The record-breaking ZOE’s average range was 110 miles. Renault says the car’s maximum range is 130 miles, but in regular driving it would probably be lower. Stop-and-go traffic doesn’t allow for smooth throttle application the way a high-speed track does.
Renault is waiting for its record to be confirmed by the Guinness Book of World Records, who sent a representative to watch the ZOE’s run. The previous record was set by rival Citroen’s AX CEA, which went 795 miles in 24 hours. A Nissan Leaf went 777 miles.