Our cars: Renault Captur 1.5 dCi - January

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  • Over the first half of a tank of diesel, the Captur's fuel gauge underestimates the fuel used

    Over the first half of a tank of diesel, the Captur's fuel gauge underestimates the fuel used

  • First service for our Captur was only £90.65, and we didn't even need to leave the office

    First service for our Captur was only £90.65, and we didn't even need to leave the office

  • Captur's stop-start system sometimes takes a while to activate, as the coolant needs to warm up

    Captur's stop-start system sometimes takes a while to activate, as the coolant needs to warm up

  • Captur's first service is easy to book with Renault's online system, and pretty cheap at £95.74

    Captur's first service is easy to book with Renault's online system, and pretty cheap at £95.74

  • Captur's first service is due soon. Time to see how easy it is to book, and try a local Renault dealer

    Captur's first service is due soon. Time to see how easy it is to book, and try a local Renault dealer

  • Captur's seat covers fit snugly, can be changed and replaced in minutes, and are easy to clean

    Captur's seat covers fit snugly, can be changed and replaced in minutes, and are easy to clean

  • Want to mute the audio in your Captur? Pull both these volume buttons (+ and -) at the same time

    Want to mute the audio in your Captur? Pull both these volume buttons (+ and -) at the same time

  • Custodian Ed Callow is going to give our Captur an eco test

    Custodian Ed Callow is going to give our Captur an eco test

  • Captur's sliding rear bench and high roof meant Vicky easily transported a few big shrubs

    Captur's sliding rear bench and high roof meant Vicky easily transported a few big shrubs

  • While most of the buttons are placed in sensible places, the SD card isn't - it gets knocked out

    While most of the buttons are placed in sensible places, the SD card isn't - it gets knocked out

  • Captur is pretty comfortable over long distances, but the driver's seat doesn't have enough lumbar support

    Captur is pretty comfortable over long distances, but the driver's seat doesn't have enough lumbar support

  • Nav volume in the radio menu? Touch-screen is clear and easy to use, but interface foibles are frustrating Ed

    Nav volume in the radio menu? Touch-screen is clear and easy to use, but interface foibles are frustrating Ed

  • The weather where you are now, and where you're going. Not a complex app, but a useful one

    The weather where you are now, and where you're going. Not a complex app, but a useful one

  • Not just the preserve of hot Renaults: you can add R-Sound Effect to the Captur. But we can't see the point

    Not just the preserve of hot Renaults: you can add R-Sound Effect to the Captur. But we can't see the point

  • Live traffic display means it's easy to tell at a glance whether you're likely to be delayed on your way to work

    Live traffic display means it's easy to tell at a glance whether you're likely to be delayed on your way to work

  • Eco mode alters the engine management system, but it doesn't seem to have a major real-world impact

    Eco mode alters the engine management system, but it doesn't seem to have a major real-world impact

  • Clever boot shelf can be fixed diagonally, giving a triangular space at the top that 'wedges' your shopping in securely while on the move

    Clever boot shelf can be fixed diagonally, giving a triangular space at the top that 'wedges' your shopping in securely while on the move

  • Will too much personalisation prove to be a bad choice come resale time?

    Will too much personalisation prove to be a bad choice come resale time?

  • The Captur's touch-screen never fully powers down. It 'glows' in the dark

    The Captur's touch-screen never fully powers down. It 'glows' in the dark

  • 'This is how much farther you can go back, Mum!'

    'This is how much farther you can go back, Mum!'

  • Sliding the rear bench all the way forward gives 455 litres - nearly as much as a BMW 3 Series

    Sliding the rear bench all the way forward gives 455 litres - nearly as much as a BMW 3 Series

  • Climate control is a doddle to use, and warms or chills effectively

    Climate control is a doddle to use, and warms or chills effectively

  • Kid's bike fits in, but you need to fold the seat down

    Kid's bike fits in, but you need to fold the seat down

  • The 'eco coach' doesn't seem to work properly some of the time

    The 'eco coach' doesn't seem to work properly some of the time

  • Renault Captur started turning heads as soon as it arrived on the fleet

    Renault Captur started turning heads as soon as it arrived on the fleet

  • Glare from the touch-screen can be a problem in low sun

    Glare from the touch-screen can be a problem in low sun

  • Captur proved a decent holiday companion in Cornwall

    Captur proved a decent holiday companion in Cornwall

  • The Renault Captur brightened up the neighbourhood

    The Renault Captur brightened up the neighbourhood

  • Sat-nav problem was fixed by some judicious restarting procedures

    Sat-nav problem was fixed by some judicious restarting procedures

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Renault Captur 1.5 dCi Dynamique Medianav

Week ending January 31
Mileage 8200
Driven this week 250 miles


Renault Captur review

I first found the R-Sound Effect app when I drove the Renault Clio GT-Line. The app is standard kit in the hotter Clios, but if you want it on another R-Link enabled Renault, it’ll set you back £4.99 from the online store.

The R-Sound Effect software works by mapping a pre-recorded car ‘soundtrack’ over the top of your driving inputs through the sound system.

In other words, when you put your foot down in your real car, the sound system lets you hear a different car accelerating instead. Or at least that’s how it’s supposed to work.

In the petrol-engined Clio, you can at least hear a half-decent impersonation of whatever car you’ve chosen, but it’s just an electronic folly. In our diesel Captur, it’s pointless. The noises compete with the diesel engine's dirge, and it also feels faintly ridiculous to have a Clio V6’s soundtrack flowing through the speakers as our Captur deploys its fairly pedestrian performance.

Fortunately, there are more useful apps available from Renault’s R-Line store, which I’ll tell you more about next week.

By Ed Callow
Ed.Callow@whatcar.com

Week ending January 24
Mileage 7950
Driven this week 130 miles


Renault Captur review

The last couple of updates have focused on some of our Captur’s everyday frustrations, so it’s only fair that this week we focus on one of its best features.

The seven-inch touch-screen you get with Dynamique MediaNav trim is one of the most intuitive and uncomplicated systems fitted to a car at any price. However, if you spend £450 on the R-Link Multimedia pack, it gets even better.

The upgrade replaces the standard Navteq sat-nav with TomTom Live software, adds access to the R-Link application store, the eco coach driving tips menu and more powerful speakers.

The TomTom sat-nav’s live traffic feature is particularly useful for me. My commute to the office is 50 miles each way - it tends to take about 90 minutes, but on one occasion it took six and a half hours.

Because of the unpredictable traffic, I’ve taken to using the sat-nav every morning. I know the route perfectly well, but the Captur’s software seems to give remarkably close estimates of the final arrival time.

Having a decent forecast of how bad the roads ahead of you are means it’s far less stressful when you wind up in a traffic jam that looks worse than it really is.

By Ed Callow
Ed.Callow@whatcar.com

Week ending January 17
Mileage 7820
Driven this week 305 miles


Renault Captur review

Last week the Captur took some stick from Ed over the accuracy and feel of the gear change. This week’s report is also a little negative too I’m afraid – but my issue lies with the engine management system.

We all want to be environmentally friendly; saving the planet and saving money. With this in mind, I took the Captur to Birmingham this weekend promising to keep the car in ‘Eco’ mode.

The trip up there was long and painfully slow, with overtakes requiring a great deal of forward planning. Shifting down a gear or two seemed to do little to spur the Renault on as the level of turbocharger boost offered up was constrained to the smallest portions of the rev-range. When I eventually arrived, I could at least console myself with an impressive 49.8mpg.

The drive home that evening was one undertaken in an entirely different mind-set. I wanted to be home as soon as possible, so all thoughts of hypermiling went out of the window, and ‘Eco’ mode was turned off. The Captur felt far more eager, even at motorway speeds, and as a result the drive back was more relaxing and more enjoyable.

Naturally then, I was more than a little surprised to see a trip average of 49.2mpg when I arrived home – it seems that the frugal running mode did little to affect the amount of fuel consumed. Next time I just won’t bother.

By Tom Langan

Week ending January 10
Mileage 7515
Driven this week 288 miles


Renault Captur review

This is my second week on the trot complaining about the manual gearbox in one of our long term test cars.

Last week it was the otherwise accomplished 3 Series GT, run by chief snapper John Bradshaw. This week my wrath turns to my own Renault Captur.

Now, I think it’s fair to say that the speed of the shift is less of a problem in the baby SUV than the BMW. The Captur 1.5 dCi needs 13.1 seconds to hit 62mph from rest, so you’re hardly missing out on a slick, urgent charge up to motorway speed.

In fact, it’s more the accuracy and feel of the change that disappoints the most. Moving the gear lever through the ratios - no matter how gently - simply feels rubbery and imprecise. More frustrating is the fact that this is far from the first time that we’ve taken issue with a manual gearbox in a Renault.

Four years ago we ran a Renault Laguna Sport Tourer, with a gear change described in its long term farewell as ‘like stirring a sack of potatoes’. As the French like to say, ‘plus ca change’.

By Ed Callow
Ed.Callow@whatcar.com

Week ending January 3
Mileage 7227
Driven this week 423 miles


Renault Captur review

The Captur is back in our car park. In fact, we were lucky enough to have it delivered by the workshop on the last day before leaving for the holidays. The part the Renault mechanics were waiting on arrived with them a few days earlier and, after a final road test, the baby SUV was finally transported to Teddington.

This meant that the Captur would be put to the test through dozens of journeys over the Christmas period after all, with battering storms, muddy and flooded roads, and near-freezing temperatures thrown into the mix. The car’s raised ride height - it sits 10cm above the Clio - gave greater confidence driving through shallow floods, while the winter tyres provided more grip in all road conditions. As far as the driving went, it acquitted itself brilliantly.

In fact, the only time it felt challenged was when being loaded up for the trip to see family in Oxfordshire. A rear passenger meant we didn't slide the seats forwards, so we squeezed boxes and two small suitcases into the standard boot space, along with bags of gifts, food and games. Unsurprisingly, the footwells were called into action as makeshift stowage areas. The two cats in their carrier on the back seat were hemmed in, too.

Nevertheless, nothing had to be left behind, and the Captur proved a comfortable, economical companion for the 230-odd miles there and back. Could it hold a family of four and all the associated Christmas paraphernalia? Just about, I reckon.

In the last week, the Renault hasn’t been quite so stuffed with luggage, people and pets, and has been all the better for it. The Captur’s multi-position boot floor can be slotted into diagonal brackets that give a decent space beneath, but more usefully, a triangular space above that ‘wedges’ carrier bags so that they don’t roll around and spill groceries on the move. It’s not a unique feature in the new car market, but it’s still immensely practical.

By Ed Callow - Ed.Callow@whatcar.com

Our cars: Renault Captur 1.5 dCi - November

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