Repetitious Renault has EV fever

Douglas A. Bolduc is managing editor of Automotive News Europe
You've got to hand it to Renault. The French automaker is using every opportunity it can to promote its upcoming electric vehicles

Chief Operating Office Patrick Pelata mentioned the coming era of EVs during a speech at an event Sept. 16 to mark Renault's 100 years of having a presence on the Champs Elysees in Paris.

Six days later, Renault grabbed headlines at the IAA truck show in Hanover, Germany, by announcing that the full-electric Kangoo Express Z.E. would be start at 20,000 euros (about $26,950) before taxes and without incentives.

The compact delivery van will cost 15,000 euros with incentives and before taxes.

There will be a lot more EV-related chatter stirred up by Renault this week at the Paris auto show. On Thursday, the it will debut the production-ready full-electric Fluence large sedan, which like the Kangoo EV goes on sales in mid-2011. Renault also will reveal a near-production version of the Zoe battery-powered city car and the sexy DeZir EV sports car concept.

A few years ago, every conversation about Renault seemed to include a mention of the low-cost Logan model line. Today, the mantra is EVs, EVs, and more EVs.

That message will only get louder on Thursday and Friday.