West Sussex County Council has added four fully-electric Renault Zoes to its fleet.
The local authority has 530 vehicles and the new additions are its first electric cars.
Based at County Hall in Chichester, the models are in service as pool cars, helping the council reduce emissions by tackling grey fleet car use and cut costs by offering staff an alternative to using their own vehicles.
Loretta Haddow, team leader – Fleet Resource and Support, at West Sussex County Council, said: “We have had electric vehicles on trial and extended demos before and must have looked at every model out there but they have never been quite right for us.
“But the latest Zoe was the game changer for us and the extended range made it a viable option for the first time.
“We are really pleased that the Zoe is able to get across the county and back and we wanted to give everyone who’s going to take one of these cars the confidence to know that wherever they’re going to go they’re going to get back again.
“Since going into service we’ve been really impressed with how easy and relaxing they are to drive. The team love them. They’re really popular.”
Between them, the vehicles will complete several thousand journeys per year, allowing users to travel from council HQ to points as far afield as Crawley and Shoreham and back on a single charge.
Haddow added: “While range and emissions were the biggest factors for us, as a public sector organisation we still have to present a compelling business case before adding new vehicles to our fleet. In this case, the Zoe ticked all the boxes in terms of whole life costs.”
The Renault Zoe is available in a choice of two trim levels, Dynamique Nav and Signature Nav, both of which come with the new R110 electric motor and the ZE 40 battery that provides a 174-mile real world range.
For customers more likely to use public rapid chargers whilst travelling longer distances, the Q90 option is available with both trim levels. This charges the Zoe from 0-80% full in just over an hour when using a 43kW charge point.
Under a battery hire scheme, Zoe pricing starts at £18,420 (OTR) after the Government Plug-in Car Grant, with battery leasing from £59 per month.
Fleets can also buy the Zoe outright. Models start from £24,020 (OTR) after the Government Plug-in Car Grant.