Table of contents:
- The Renault Kaptur was a bit old from the start. When it appeared in Russia, design was already three years old, and technology from Duster was seven. Last year the source - the European Captur has completely changed the generation, but our Captur has just received new hardware, a refreshed interior - and … retained the appearance from 2013. The reasons are clear: savings should be economical. But will the measures taken be enough to give this model an impetus for the next few years?
Video: Second Old Age: Test Drive Of The Updated Renault Kaptur
2023 Author: Natalie MacDonald | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 02:36
The Renault Kaptur was a bit old from the start. When it appeared in Russia, design was already three years old, and technology from Duster was seven. Last year the source - the European Captur has completely changed the generation, but our Captur has just received new hardware, a refreshed interior - and … retained the appearance from 2013. The reasons are clear: savings should be economical. But will the measures taken be enough to give this model an impetus for the next few years?
It was simply necessary to cheer up Capture: both his and Duster's sales were falling for the fourth year in a row, and the competition was growing almost weekly. In addition, Renault's main hope for a "reboot" failed: the ambitious Arcana turned out to be not very popular and cannot be seen in the top 25 Russian sales. This is also why the recipe for renewal looks very risky.
After all, the crossover moved to the Arkan Global Access platform and, as a result, received its own power unit - a 150-horsepower 1.33 turbo engine, coupled with a variator. And if even in the case of an invisible cross-coupe this combination frightens off many buyers, what will happen to Capture - a car from which they are used to expect Duster's indestructibility, only in a stylish wrapper? We will discuss this below, but for now, let's talk about the wrapper.
Whiskers, paws and needles … I mean, new wheels, advertising dark blue color and a radiator grill - that's all the differences between the new Capture and the old one. Not a lot for a car that relies on style - but I must admit that the design is not so much outdated as just fed up. Although for the buyer, these concepts are often identical. But what exactly needed to be dealt with was the condo interior - but even here everything turned out ambiguous.
Kaptur meets with the same architecture from the beginning of the last decade and the same all-Alogan scent. And this is bad for the specialists from Renault, who have done a serious job of bringing the old condo salon into a divine form. The top of the front panel is now covered with soft material, the eternal curvature of French ergonomics is almost completely healed, you can sit behind the wheel much more conveniently, but still - having arrived to watch the new Kaptur on an old car sharing, you will not feel a radical difference. But living here has become easier and more pleasant.
On the go, the updated Kaptur gives rise to similar emotions: like the same melody that can be guessed from one note, only in a more interesting arrangement and with a normal recording. The main revelation is the steering wheel! The electric amplifier has finally turned it into an understandable, civilized tool that can be dealt with in the 21st century. Now the steering wheel turns easily with one hand at parking speeds, it does not bite during fast rotation, and even the eternal urge to break the driver's wrists when driving through any irregularities is almost nullified here. How little, it turns out, is needed for happiness.
Just don't expect the crossover to handle interestingly now. Firstly, this would be a violation of all possible limits of miracles, and secondly, it is simply not necessary for anyone. Not to engineers, not to customers. There was no information on the imposing steering wheel, the rolls are still more than noticeable, and in the limit modes Captyur simply slides out of the corner, because he is not at all interested in fighting for the trajectory and pleasing your driver's ambitions. Yes, and pushing shoulders with an athletic Arkana is also useless.
In general, a high-profile event called "platform change" is carefully disguised here: in terms of suspension settings, the creators did everything to preserve the original character. Therefore, the springs are much softer than the Arkan ones - by 30 percent at the front, and by 50 percent at the rear. The characteristics of shock absorbers and stabilizers are selected in the same way: all for the sake of comfort and calmness on bad roads.
Moreover, it seems that Kaptyur drove even softer - just because of the steering wheel, which ceased to be the only source of truth about the state of the road and joined the general censored background. And that's great! Slap, slap - giant pits, rammed railroad crossings and bumps the size of a human head disappear under the wheels. Even at speeds over 180, the crossover confidently keeps a straight line, swaying slightly on a transverse wave, and does not bother at all with unnecessary sounds: aerodynamics can still be heard, but there is practically no tire hum in the cabin. Here it is, a regional idyll!
And the turbo-vario-tandem works well. Certainly better than the ancient bunch of two-liter aspirated with a four-speed automatic. According to the passport, this replacement accelerated the all-wheel drive Kaptyur by 0.8 seconds in acceleration to a hundred - now it is quite acceptable here 10.4 seconds. The motor pulls well after 1500 rpm, it is convenient to control the thrust, and you can only regret the absence of the sports mode of the electronics, put by the Arcana.
In the operation of the variator, there is still the notorious "rubberiness", and the change of virtual steps is rather nominal here: the revolutions fall by a symbolic six to seven hundred. And in traffic jams, the Kaptur frustrates with a too sensitive accelerator, and in addition, it periodically twitches. All in all, this is once again the case when KiSeltos has to be remembered as an example of the perfect CVT tuning that everyone should strive for.
And here we come to the most scrupulous moment: what can a car offer off-road, in which all-wheel drive is now available only with a variator?
The organizers offered a not very scary, but very nice sand pit: moderately loose sand, ruts, medium steep ascents and descents - in general, nothing that would embarrass a duster-like SUV. And how surprised I was when, at the very first attempt to move off the hill, Kaptur issued a message about the clutch overheating! The very same clutch that has been tested over the years and on really tough off-road conditions that won even frame all-terrain vehicles. We more than once or twice pushed on Duster, Captyura and Terrano into all sorts of impassable thickets and we know for sure: this clutch overheats only after many hours and systematic bullying, and not like this - out of the blue.
Maybe a glitch? The message soon disappears, I stop at the next hill, gas again - and again, almost immediately, overheating. The Kaptur does not even really slip: the electronics protects the variator, preventing it from raising the revs above two and a half thousand, and the imitation of inter-wheel locks is only enough for the crossover to try to move forward with small jerks. Most often unsuccessfully: without minimal acceleration, the peaks almost did not obey him.
If you thought the symptoms were more indicative of CVT overheating than an unkillable clutch, you are not alone. But no, the indication is not engaged in the substitution of concepts: it is written - clutch, then clutch. Even stranger is the fact that the next 20 minutes of sand games were already without alarming messages, and the experience of colleagues from Auto Review showed exactly the opposite: on Arkan they recorded the same rapid overheating, and Kaptyur did not give anything of the kind. But there is no smoke without fire: it seems that in the combination of the variator and the well-deserved clutch, something does not work quite as it should.
However, it is no longer entirely correct to approach the updated Renault Kaptur with jeep requirements: it is no longer a disguised Duster, but rather a city car with a seriously increased cross-country ability. The way it should have been from the very beginning. And while he was catching up with himself for four years, competitors did not stand still: Creta, Seltos, an armada of "Chinese" of the new wave - all of them are simply more modern and fresher.
The same Captyur, only normal - this is the shortest and most accurate description of the updated car. Not bad to support sales, but not enough to get Renault back on the market. The French have turned from leaders into those who are catching up, and it seems that there are no trump cards left in their sleeves. Do you think a new Duster will come and again erase everyone to dust? Who knows. After all, the European version is already three years old.