Expert Reviews

First Drive: Renault Captur

Thursday 25 May 2017

First Drive: Renault Captur

The Captur was Europe’s best-selling ‘urban crossover’ in 2016, so now that it’s time for Renault to breathe new life into the model it’s no surprise that not a lot has changed.

The distinctive-looking car now has LED running lights and more alloy wheels to choose from, as well as new skid plates to make it look more rugged. The changes are subtle, but its design fits better with the existing Kadjar and upcoming Koleos.

Meanwhile, the engine line-up remains the same, with the existing 1.2-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel units remaining.

Looks & Image

You’ll have to look closely to find the difference between the new model and the one it replaces, but those C-shaped LED daytime running lights and updated LED light cluster at the rear are the more obvious changes.

Inside, it’s a similar story. Dynamique S trim levels and above now get a fixed glass sunroof, while there are better quality plastics on the dashboard. Top spec cars also get a leather-trimmed steering wheel.

The cabin certainly feels more premium than before, but it’s far from a groundbreaking update.

Space & Practicality

The Captur continues to be an impressively spacious car. Whether in the front or back seats there’s plenty of shoulder room, while the large windows give an airy feel – though this is negated somewhat by the darker upholstery colours.

There’s 377 litres of boot space and plenty of in-car storage as well. There are deep door bins big enough to carry water bottles, while the cup holders will also come in handy too.

Behind the Wheel

If you’re expecting the Captur to be high on practicality and low on driver involvement, you might be surprised. We tested the 1.2-litre engine and it was nippy – ideal for city driving – though you do have to work the gearbox often to make progress. Unfortunately, the gear shift isn’t particularly pleasant to use and isn’t as accurate as some competitor ‘boxes.

The ride isn’t too firm and deals well with bumps and potholes, while the light steering is ideal for the urban commute.

Value for Money

At £19,095, our test car came with a full infotainment system, air conditioning and a multifunction steering wheel. Because the plastics used higher in the cabin have been updated, there is a more premium feel than before. However, there are still some cheap plastics to be found lower down and they stand out more compared to their soft-touch neighbours.

The infotainment system is far from the best in class, lacking the precision found in other manufacturers’ cars, while the sat nav is slow to react. However, we were impressed by the Bose sound system.

Who would buy one ?

The Captur is ideal for those people looking for no- frills motoring, low running costs and a competitive price. The facelift might be minor, but it has introduced some important changes that make the Captur more appealing. However, it faces a tough fight against the likes of the funky Toyota CH-R and Citroen C4 Cactus.

Facts at a Glance

Model: Renault Captur Dynamique S Nav TCe 120
Price as tested: £19,095
Engine: 1.2-litre petrol
Power: 118bhp
Torque: 205Nm
Max speed: 119mph
0-60mph: 9.7seconds
Economy: 51.5mpg
Emissions: 125g/km

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