Tony O'Kane | Nov 10, 2009

RENAULT HAS CONFIRMED that it will move ahead with plans to build three electric cars in Europe, with the first to enter production in 2011.

The Zoe Z.E, Twizy Z.E and Kangoo Z.E concepts that were shown at the recent Frankfurt Motor Show will form the basis for these cars, and will be built in volume at factories located in France and Spain.

The three compact electric vehicles (EVs) will join the recently-announced Renault Fluence ZEC, which is slated to appear in production form sometime in 2011.

2008-renault-ze-concept

Primarily destined for European markets, it's unclear whether any of them will hit Australian shores.

The Twizy (top) will be the first off the production line. The tiny 1+1 microcar will be built at Renault's assembly plant in Valladolid, Spain, which builds the Modus and some Clio variants, and production will begin in 2011.

An electric version of the Kangoo small van (above) will follow the Twizy, and will be assembled at Renault's Maubeurge plant in 2011.

2009_renault_zoe-ze_concept_01

Finally, a small car based on the Zoe concept (above) will be built at the company's Flins plant in 2012, and will be positioned as Renault's core EV model. A four-seater roughly the same size as the Clio hatchback, the small EV is intended to appeal to urban commuters.

The Flins plant will also assemble and recycle battery packs for Renault's electric vehicles, making it the epicenter of Renault's EV manufacturing operations.

Technical details on the three upcoming EVs have yet to be released, however expect more information to surface late next year.

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