A new electric car can be switched off remotely if a payment is missed – which civil liberties campaigners have warned is “chilling”.
Buyers of the £13,995 Renault Zoe will have to pay monthly to rent the battery that runs it.
Renault can send a signal to stop it charging if an instalment is missed or if the hatchback is not returned at the end of a lease.
The car also logs its location, journeys and speeds.
Karsten Gerloff, president of the Free Software Foundation Europe, said: “This data tells the company where you are going, when, and how fast, where you charge the battery, and many other things besides.
“If there is a mechanism to remotely control what your car does, some will make use of this mechanism at some point.
“This could be the manufacturer, shutting down your car as you fall behind on the battery rent because you just lost your job, meaning that it becomes harder for you to find work. It could be the government, compelling the manufacturer to do its bidding.”