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Ghosn's Zero Sum Game

Frankfurt - Renault/Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn is not a man to tiptoe into anything. When he leads his company into a new arena, he likes to go in charging. When Nissan stepped up to the U.S. full size pick-up truck market a few years back, he made a big splash in Detroit. Now, in Frankfurt, he's doing it again. This time he is counting on adding up big sales with a line-up of zero emission vehicles. Ghosn calls it, "Environmental soundness at a price everyone can afford."

From a pint-size urban mobility vehicle to a family sedan, Renault's line-up of zero-emission (Z.E.) concept cars are designed to be re-charged 3 different ways (4-8 hours through a standard outlet, a quick charge through select outlets, and with a battery swap at charging stations). They're range will be up to roughly 100 miles and according to Ghosn, Renault will start rolling them out over the next 3 years.

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If his vision becomes reality, Nissan believes it will establish itself as the leader in zero emission electric cars. It's a market Ghosn believes will generate 10% of auto industry sales by 2020. If he's right, Renault's zero sum game could add up to big bucks. Of course, that's a big "if". There are plenty of people who think Renault/Nissan and GM (Chevy Volt) are overly optimistic about the public appetite for electric cars. Personally, I think Ghosn is smart to target electric vehicles, but their sales will be modest for many years to come, especially if gas stays cheap.

The Renault Z.E. Line-up

The Twizy Concept: An urban mobility vehicle designed for short trips in the city. Renault will announce production plans in the second half of 2011.

Renault Twizy Concept
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Renault Twizy Concept

The Zoe Concept: A small sedan scheduled for production in 2012

Renault Zoe Concept
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Renault Zoe Concept



The Zoe Concept: A small sedan scheduled for production in 2012

Renault Zoe Concept
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Renault Zoe Concept



The Fluence Concept: Scheduled to come out in 2011, the Fluence Concept is for those who want "Style and elegance, says Ghosn. It will first be sold in Israel in conjunction with Project Better Place.

Renault Fluence Concept
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Renault Fluence Concept

The Kangoo Concept: A small package delivery vehicle scheduled for production in the first half of 2011

Renault Kangoo Concept
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Renault Kangoo Concept

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