The vehicle which French car company Renault has presented to Pope Benedict XVI is not a real Popemobile because it is not armoured. But it is much more than just an “electric” car, reports Vatican Insider.
The white Kangoo Maxi Z.E delivered to Castel Gandolfo measures 4,6 metres in length and 1,8 metres in width, is fitted with a 44kW electric engine and thanks to its lithium-ion battery it can travel 170 kilometres without recharging.
With the new electric addition to the Vatican flotilla, the Pope’s car collection goes even greener. The Vatican Gendarmerie already has two electric Smart cars, two Chrysler “golf cars” used for getting around the Castel Gandolfo gardens and one two-seater car which Italian company NWG presented to the Vatican Press Office this summer.
Vatican spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi says this is no coincidence: “We are aware of the fact that attention to environmental problems are recurrent themes in papal teaching in general and are being mentioned more and more frequently by Benedict XVI,” he said during his presentation to the press last week.
Although it will not be possible to use Renault’s new gift for the majority of the Pope’s public events, the Pope will mostly use it to get around the Vatican or the papal villa complex.
FULL STORY Renault presents Pope with new electric car (Vatican Insider)