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Renault boosts ZOE EV’s range by almost 15% to 149 miles with new motor unit

The new R240 motor unit with integrated PEC. Click to enlarge.

Renault has extended the range of its battery-electric ZOE to 149 miles (240 kilometers)—a boost of 19 miles (31 km), or 14.6%—in the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) by using a new lighter and more compact R240 electric motor and an optimized electronic management system. (Earlier post.)

The R240 is a synchronous electric motor with rotor coil, with a power output of 65 kW and torque of 220 N·m (162 lb-ft). It also features a built-in Chameleon charger (earlier post) which allows faster charging at home (3 kW and 11 kW). The R240 is an all-Renault motor, designed by Renault engineers at the Technocentre R&D facility outside Paris and at the Cléon plant where the motor is made—close to Flins, where the ZOE is produced.

ZOE. Click to enlarge.

ZOE’s new R240 motor features improved performance (and consumes less energy), while offering a longer driving range and faster charging times. The new motor builds on Renault’s expertise in electric vehicles; 95 patents have been filed to date.

Two main areas of focus in the development were improved electronic management to cut electric energy consumption on the move and the new charging system to reduce charging times at low power levels. When designing the new motor, Renault focused on integrating components which have helped to cut the motor’s size by 10% without sacrificing performance. This opens up new opportunities for the motor to be fitted to smaller cars.

Exploded view of the R240. Click to enlarge.
  • Modules are no longer stacked, having been replaced by fully integrated modules.

  • Smaller modules have been designed and assembled to meet precise requirements (gaps reduced between modules, external power cables removed).

  • An air cooling system is now used for the assembly (ducts between modules have been removed). Only the Power Electronic Controller is still water-cooled for its specific requirements.

  • The junction box, the power electronics unit and the Chameleon charger are now in a single unit called the Power Electronic Controller. The unit is 25% smaller as a result.

Cutaway view of the Power Electronic Controller. Click to enlarge.

Renault is continuing its research into improving electric motor technology—the underlying goal of its involvement in the FIA Formula E Championship as both a technical partner to the series and the title sponsor of the e.dams-Renault team. By testing EV technology under extreme race conditions, this championship will help to speed up the progress of EV development in terms of both performance and range, the company said.


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The new zoe gets 240km range and the Leaf get 200 km range on the European test cycle. The epa range for the 2015 Leaf is 84 miles so the new zoe will get a less than 100 miles epa rating. I hate it when car makers give their range in miles using the European rating process. This is totally misleading and manipulative.

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I applaud the progress Renault has made. It is substantial.


'Renault boosts ZOE EV’s range by almost 15% to 149 miles with new motor unit'

This sort of range helps erase range anxiety, especially for US distances.

One can reason it's only 30 miles to work, but there's always some unexpected mileage and one naturally watches more when most the charge is gone and they drove less than 50 miles.


Zoe 240km on NEDC
Leaf 200km on NEDC

ratio 1.2:1

84 miles for the Leaf on EPA*1.2 = 100.8 miles on the EPA

How dare Europeans use European ratings for a car sold in Europe but not NA though, instead of NA ratings?


I drive 34 miles each way to work at highway speeds in the midwest cold my understanding is the Leaf's mileage just collapses and having only a 10 mile buffer is why I do not have a Leaf in my driveway.
I need the Bolt at a reasonable price, but I am sure it will be 40K. The Volt is too expensive as well.
Even after years in production BEV's are still a high priced item with limited range.

Thomas Pedersen




So I guess the new Zoe is just right for you, then?

Wait another half generation, and I bet there will be BEVs with 150 mile range.

Wait, did I just sound like Harvey D..?


This is just one more mini step towards extended range afforadable BEVs. It is a good gain without the use of improved 2X to 4X future batteries.

Do not give up TP, 2020 is now only 5 years away and posters still around will see major changes.

Our local cities are planning to spend $5 B (CAN) or about $3.9 B USD to electrify ALL city buses in the next 12-15 years. Most of those 40 ft and 66 ft electric buses will probably be built locally by Nova-Volvo. The first city e-buses batch should be out in about 18 months. Contracts for charging facilities are not given yet. The first charging units will be installed in late 2016 or early 2017 on selected bus routes.


The latest low-end EVs have EPA range of 93 for the KIA Soul and the ~100 mile Zoe above, so every year the average EV significantly range improves.

If just 10% of the reported battery breakthroughs are real and get to market economically(or the FULL cost of deep/remote oil drilling and climate/pollution healthcare costs gets charged at the pump) - ICE will go the way of the kerosene record player.


Wait till they start using GaN or SiC which makes the inverters, rectifiers, etc 75% smaller and over 60% lighter as well as another 20-25% jump in efficiency.

Add all of that with better batteries over the next couple of years. We'll easily see true 150+ mile ranges by 2017 or 2018 for about the price you get a Leaf today.


I forgot to mention, GaN and SiC can operate at such high temperatures that they often don't need any type of cooling system which also reduces overall system size, complexity and cost as well.

Roto Tech

Great points, I really like your article. Come to ROTOTECH for single phase, three phase, electric motors, and speed controllers and much more. Read more at

Thomas Lankester

Hi Folks,

You need to read the small print on this one
"The Renault ZOE R240 can still be charged at 22kW at fast charging points, but does not offer the ability to charge 80% in under 30 minutes at rapid (43kW) points, as the current model does."

So we've lost rapid charging on motorways. This is retrograde so I will be sticking to my current, Zoe. The current 90mile real world range is fine for my normal journeys and for longer distance I don't want to be stuck for 40-60 minutes at service stations.


If its solar to hydrogen or BEV, I am still waiting for something that can consistently travel over 100 miles in all kinds of weather for a go to work and home car at a reasonable price. Anyone remember the compressed air car? Well thats still in the works. Some day something will create something to give us transportation at a reasonable cost.
Been waiting over two decades for those breakthroughs to happen. Its closer now than it ever was but still seems so so far away.

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