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Renault Captur concept car (2011) at 2011 Geneva motor show

By Tim Pollard

First Official Pictures

10 February 2011 11:08

Renault today whisked the covers off the new Captur concept car. It’s a compact SUV akin to alliance partner Nissan’s Juke – and the Renault Captur will be the French brand’s star at the 2011 Geneva motor show in March.

It’s certainly a welcome look at a clean-sheet proposal for an SUV. We’ve never fully warmed to the larger Koleos, a short-cut gleaned from the innards of Renault’s Asian partners.

Renault Captur concept car: the details

The Captur captures Renault’s new design DNA, as pioneered on the 2010 Dezir concept car. As well as the striking new-look Renault nose, there are some interesting design details: the LED indicators flow into a wave the full length of the flanks and there’s a pleasing chunkiness to its shape.

Crafted from carbonfibre, the Captur has a removable roof flipping the crossover between coupe and convertible. The Murano CrossCabriolet over at Nissan has clearly had an impact in the corridors of power at Paris.

Four passengers access the car through butterfly doors, settling into skeletal carbon seats.

Is the Renault Captur an EV?

Nope. Powering the Captur is a twin-turbo version of Renault’s latest dCi engine, spinning the frankly ludicrous – but very cool – 22in black and white rims. This 1.6-litre diesel produces 158bhp and a stout 280lb ft from just 1750rpm.

Paired with a twin-clutch gearbox, the Captur achieves a claimed 99g/km of CO2. Not bad for a baby crossover, albeit presumably a pie-in-the-sky figure for a concept car. Mind you, there are numerous technical advances: a new RX2 mechanical self-locking differential sends torque to whichever front wheel has the best grip. Yep, the Renault Captur is front-wheel drive.

‘Captur is a fun and sporty crossover, ideal for a  young couple about to discover the world,’ said director of design Laurens Van den Acker. ‘It takes as its basis the fundamental design language introduced on the Dezir concept car but adds a more technical dimension – more functional but still highly
sensuous.’