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Renault signs biggest-ever Zoe deal as EV subscription firm expands fleet

Subscription-based EV service Onto has taken delivery of the first cars in a record-breaking 1,100-strong order for the Renault Zoe electric supermini.

The latest-gen Renault Zoes join the first-gen models on the Onto EV subscription fleet

The new vehicles – which mark the biggest-ever single order for the Zoe in the UK – join the 180 first-generation Zoes on the scheme, which has been designed to bring a flexible alternative to full ownership of an electric vehicle.

First launched in 2017 under the former ‘Evezy’ branding, Onto’s scheme now includes some 1,300 cars and includes everything needed for a hassle-free EV experience – the car, insurance, breakdown cover, maintenance and even the electricity to charge it – for an all-in-one monthly price and no long-term commitment.

The previous-generation Zoe is the entry-level model for the scheme with a monthly subscription of £339, and the latest-gen Zoe, which launched September 2019 with a longer range, will join it, based on factors including ease of use, impressive range and customer feedback on the first-gen versions.

The latest Zoes, which are powered by a new, more powerful R135 motor that is twinned to a 52kWh battery, have been ordered in both the Iconic R135 Z.E. 50 and the sporty GT Line R135 Z.E.50 versions, priced at £389 per month and £419 respectively. All new Zoes feature the 50KW DC rapid charge option and are supplied with an RFID card that works with the Polar Network charging infrastructure.

Vincent Tourette, managing director of Groupe Renault UK, said: “We are delighted that Onto has chosen the new Zoe as the perfect all-electric vehicle to help these drivers, plus those who are already converted and need no persuading, experience the many benefits of driving an EV. As Onto recognises, the new Zoe is incredibly easy to use and own, a fact that is backed up by its popularity with customers and the motoring press alike.”

Onto’s subscription solution taps into two fast-growing trends; rising EV uptake and increased demand for flexible subscription services.

EV demand was already surging as a result of increasing EV incentives such as the company car tax ratings for 2020/21 that have seen Benefit-in-Kind fall to 0%, rising to 1% in 2021/22. Research by Arval this month showed fleet intentions to adopt electrified vehicles have risen rapidly in the last 12 months. But this has been fuelled by a growing emphasis on sustainability among drivers as we exit lockdown and latest new UK car registration figures showed ultra-low emission vehicles accounted for more new car registrations than diesels in June.

The Onto service also caters for consumers’ growing appetites for subscription-based business models, due to the increased convenience and flexibility. Such models are present in many product and service categories; including rising numbers of car-based schemes; including Jaguar Land Rover’s latest service, now dubbed Pivotal, and the new Caasta.com solution, intended to challenge traditional fleet leasing. Tyre giant Bridgestone has even announced this week that it’s introduced a subscription model for tyres.

Commenting on the expansion of the Onto scheme with the new Zoes, CEO Rob Jolly explained: “We are in the midst of a big societal shift which has been further accelerated by the pandemic. Our subscription service offers more freedom to customers when it comes to driving an electric car. We know the new Renault Zoe will be great for customers who are ready to experience their first EV. The previous-generation Zoe has been core to our growth as a business, and we’re excited to see the improvements in the new model – with more features, a better range and DC rapid charging.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie edits all the Fleet World websites and newsletters, and loves to hear about any latest industry news.