Road Test Review: Renault Captur E-Tech Plug-In Hybrid S Edition

Independent review by Jon Smith

4-minute read

Renault Captur S Edition Side

Road Test: Renault Captur E-Tech Plug-In Hybrid S Edition

Explore the key features of the Renault Captur E-Tech Plug-In Hybrid S Edition in our expert road test review

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The Renault Captur E-Tech is a great example of a plug-in hybrid that offers high levels of practicality and features to enjoy.


  • Strong performance
  • Attractive design
  • Practical
  • Efficient
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A growing number of us are realising the advantages of having a short car that’s a bit taller than the average hatch or saloon.

For a start, parking is easier in today’s congested streets, and also those extra centimetres in height allow passengers to sit more upright and stretch their legs out more vertically. Another bonus is improved visibility, particularly when negotiating country lanes with high hedges.

So the crossover and small SUV is very much the flavour of the moment. Which is pretty good news for firms like Renault, which has been churning out taller, small family models since the days of the ugly duckling but amazingly practical 4L back in the 1960s.

Today’s representative in the sector from the French giant is the Captur, a 5-door compact hatch with semi-SUV looks, front drive and the option of part electric power. So, very contemporary.

Powertrain and Performance

We sampled the Renault Captur E-Tech plug-in hybrid 160 version, which uses a 1.6-litre petrol engine and a couple of electric motors powered by a 9.8kWh battery, which say Renault will allow it to travel up to 28 miles on electric alone.

Like the Clio, on which it is based, the Captur is driven by its front wheels. Now in its second incarnation, the latest shape is a tad more sporty and fun, as well as being a bit longer and wider.

Like most Renault cars, the ride is compliant and focuses to a greater extent on comfort rather than dynamic performance. There’s a slight degree of body roll during press-on cornering, but this isn’t excessive. The plus is that all but the worst road imperfections are easily soaked up.

Acceleration, especially from a start, is quite swift, but the automatic 6-speed gearbox tends to respond slowly, resulting in sometimes jerky progress. 62mph comes up from rest in a shade over 10 secs, which is about par for the class. Noise levels are higher than expected under full acceleration.

There are no complaints about the economy. Even ignoring the theoretical and absurd 200+mpg of the official statistics, most owners will comfortably top the 50mpg mark, as we did during most of the evaluation.

Design and Practicality

The cabin has an appropriately modern look with a large central touchscreen, floating console, and it comes equipped for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Renault persists in putting the radio controls at the rear of a stalk off the steering wheel – not always an easy spot to locate.

Seats, both front and rear, are well shaped and supportive. Those in the front have ample adjustment for rake and height. Headroom all round is generous, as you’d expect in a crossover.
Jon Smith

Although there are adequate holders for bottles, the cubbies and storage areas are quite shallow or small for family needs. Boot space, though probably sufficient for most families, is restricted by the necessary electric workings with a raised luggage platform.

The S Edition comes well kitted out with roof rails, 40-60 split rear seat, sat nav, 18-inch diamond cut alloy wheels and 10-inch driver info display.


The Renault Captur E-Tech is a great option for an environmentally-friendly family vehicle as it offers great economy and efficiency as well as being super practical.

The S Edition in particular offers a wide variety of features and while it's no longer available as new, there are other trims available with the Renault Captur E-Tech such as the Techno, and used versions of the S Edition too.