Renault has opened pre-registration for its Z.E. electric vehicle emission range, joining Nissan and Mitsubishi in the race to get electric vehicles on the market.

Consumers can now pre-reserve their interest for both the Fluence Z.E. and Kangoo Express Z.E. electric vehicles at Renault's Z.E. website, although pricing is still unconfirmed.

Earlier this month, Nissan launched pre-registration for its LEAF electric vehicle in Europe and the US, for delivery in late 2010 or early 2011. Renault's models will initially go on sale in Israel, Denmark and the rest of Europe in 2011.

The company has also confirmed the final designs for the Fluence Z.E. and Kangoo Express Z.E. The Fluence is set to be 13 cm longer than the combustion-engine version, to make room for the battery behind the rear seats.

The 250kg battery will be able to charge using three methods. Via a household mains supply, a full charge will be completed in six to eight hours, while fast charge stations will charge it in 30 minutes. Renault expects these to be available in select locations in 2012 or 2013, along with "QuickDrop Battery Switch" stations where the batteries can be exchanged in around three minutes.

Renault quotes a range of 160 km for the Fluence Z.E., with an electronically-capped top speed of 135 km/h.

The Kangoo Express Z.E., which will be available from the first half of 2011, is a commercial vehicle charged from a conventional mains outlet. It boasts a range of 160 km and a top speed of 130 km/h.

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