Rivals to the Captur are ever-growing so Renault has revised it for 2017
The Renault Captur was one of the first small crossovers to take on the Nissan Juke. Like its sister car, Renault was able to fully capitalise on this: last year, it was both Renault’s best-selling car in the UK, and the best-selling compact crossover across Europe.
But this sector hasn’t stood still. It’s been flooded with new entrants, and many more are lining up to steal some of the Captur’s sales – models such as the Hyundai Kona and Kia Stonic. To help it fight back, Renault has thus facelifted the Captur.
It’s hardly headline-grabbing stuff, though. Exterior changes are limited to a redesigned nose with more chrome and optional LED running lights, plus front and rear skid plates that bring it in line with the look of Renault’s larger crossover Koleos.
Renault Captur Dynamique S Nav dCi 110 review
Engine: 1.5-litre, four-cylinder, diesel
Gearbox: Six-speed manual
Kerb weight: 1190kg
Top speed: 109mph
Economy: 76.3mpg (combined)
CO2/tax band: 98g/km, 21%
Inside, it feels a bit posher, and new optional equipment includes blind spot warning and a family-friendly panoramic sunroof. Under the bonnet, though, there are no mechanical changes whatsoever.
So buyers will be familiar with the performance of motors such as the 108bhp 1.5-litre dCi we tested – familiar with what a decent all-rounder it is, with plenty of pulling power and fine economy. It’s refined in town too, and it’s only an excess of wind and road noise at higher speeds that spoils things.
Handling is safe and secure, with surprisingly precise steering, although this isn’t necessarily a priority for owners: a smooth ride is, and the Captur delivers here. It soaks up lumps and bumps well, using its supple suspension settings well.
A nicer-feeling interior complements this nicely. True, it looks barely any different to the pre-facelift Captur, but it feels a lot smarter to sit in and operate. Plastics are better quality and kids will love the optional panoramic sunroof, a bargain at £400.
The only oddity is that although the Captur gets smartphone mirroring through its touchscreen infotainment system, it only works for Android devices, not Apple iPhones.
It’s not exactly a headline-grabbing facelift, and the Captur still isn’t a thrill-a-minute machine, but it’s now more well-rounded and even more likeable. Whether this diesel model, at over £21,000, is a sensible buy, is another matter: we can’t help but notice the 118bhp four-cylinder 1.2 TCe turbo petrol alternative is £2,000 cheaper and thus probably an even better buy.