© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Hierarchical ZnO@MnO2 core-shell pillar arrays on Ni foam have been fabricated by a facile two-step hydrothermal approach and further investigated as the binder-free electrode for supercapacitors. The core-shell hybrid nanostructure is achieved by decorating ultrathin self-standing MnO2 nanosheets on ZnO pillar arrays grown radically on Nickel foam. This unique well-designed binder-free electrode exhibits a high specific capacitance (423.5 F g-1 at a current density of 0.5 A g-1), and excellent cycling stability (92% capacitance retention after 3000 cycles). The improved electrochemical results show that the ZnO@MnO2 core-shell nanostructure electrode is promising for high-performance supercapacitors. The facile design of the unique core-shell array architectures provides a new and effective approach to fabricate high-performance binder-free electrode for supercapacitors.