Twingo product manager, Laure Grégoire talks with Automobile-Propre on the launch of the new electric city car and on the brand’s objectives for the European market.
Foreshadowed by the Twin’Z concept presented in 2013, the electric Renault Twingo finally arrives on the European market where it complements the ZOE in a much more urban segment. Why did you wait so long ? Precisely so as not to overshadow the queen of electric cars! “At the time of the launch of the first ZOE (2013 editor’s note), the battery was limited to 22 kWh and there was no room for a second electric vehicle for urban use” explains Laure Grégoire, Twingo product manager . “Today, the ZOE has become more versatile with more range which leaves room for an electric Twingo. This delay also enabled us to benefit from the latest innovations in the battery, particularly in terms of cost, ”she continues.
180 km of range in the WLTP combined cycle and 225 km in the urban route. In order not to cannibalize the ZOE, Renault did not seek the driving range records with its small electric Twingo. In the end, this is satisfied with a 22 kWh battery, a value equivalent to that of the first generation of ZOE launched in 2013.
“We assume a clearly urban positioning. When we analyze the uses of our customers in this category, they travel 30 km per day. This autonomy seems to us adapted to the needs ”argues the person in charge of Renault. “At the same time, we are trying to highlight the speed of charging thanks to the solid experience of Renault and its chameleon charger in 22 kW. In France, 60 to 70% of charging points deliver 22 kW. This is where Twingo has its advantages! For us, this relationship between battery life and charging speed seems to be the best compromise “she adds.
LLD as the main purchasing solution
“We had a very good start with results well beyond our expectations in France but also in other European countries where the Vibes limited series is doing very well. It is still too early to comment on the customer mix, but the finishes chosen are rather upscale “summarizes the Renault product manager.
According to data provided to us by the manufacturer, 755 electric Twingo were registered on European soil during the month of October, including 678 in France. It’s not much, but remember that the car is still in the starting phase. In France, the first demonstration vehicles barely landed in dealerships while the arrival of the range is happening in stages in other European markets. “In Germany, only the Vibes finish is now available to order” quotes our interviewee as an example.
“Our ambition is to reach 30% of Twingo’s electric sales in Europe, knowing that 50% of volumes are done in France,” summarizes Laure Grégoire. “We will conquer but we also have a big objective to switch the existing clientele”. If we relate the target to some 87,000 Twingo registered by Renault on European soil in 2019, the manufacturer should sell around 25,000 copies of its city car in electric in a full year, less than the Renault ZOE which should greatly exceed the 80,000 registrations this year.
The launch of the Twingo also marks a change in the manufacturer’s commercial policy. The battery rental solution, which largely contributed to the success of the ZOE in its early days, is not on the program of the new electric Twingo which, in addition to the full purchase, should mainly take place in LLD. “Today on Twingo, we are at 65% of gasoline leasing sales. We are aiming for the same rate or a little more, around 70%, on the electric Twingo, or the equivalent of the ZOE “explains our interlocutor.