Renault Captur automatic (EDC) 2014 review

22 Jan, 2014 2:15pm Tom Phillips

Does this twin-clutch gearbox work better in 2014 Renault Captur automatic than in the Clio?

Verdict

3
The Renault Captur automatic is a spacious and good-looking crossover. It’s not especially exciting, but it’s at least simple to drive. This should be enhanced by the EDC gearbox, but its poor responses frustrate, while the grabby brakes only make matters worse. The higher-powered petrol engine is smooth, although there are better models in the range.

Renault’s EDC dual-clutch gearbox was disappointing in the Renault Clio RS. So is it a better fit in the Renault Captur crossover?

• Full Renault Captur review

Unlike the hot Clio, you can have your Captur in manual or automatic form. However, if you prefer petrol power, the EDC comes with the 118bhp 1.2-litre engine, while the manual is fitted solely to the 89bhp 900cc version.

Off the line, it doesn’t matter if you press the throttle softly or aggressively, the Captur never seems to engage first gear fast enough, or get off the line without jerking forward, which is annoying in stop-start traffic.

The gears shift more smoothly once you’re up and running, but the box is slow to react if you want it to kick down so you can overtake a slower vehicle.

Renault Clio and Captur range updates

The brakes lack finesse, too. While the pedal has a long travel, the brakes only respond once you’ve pressed it half way. And when they do apply, they’re really grabby, so it’s hard to make a smooth stop.

Still, the Captur remains a good-looking car - the Captur isn’t quite as handsome as the Clio, but it’s easier on the eye than a Nissan Juke - and the high driving position is a bonus, even if the thick A-pillars restrict your view at junctions. And while the ride is firm over low-speed bumps, the engine is smooth and quiet.

It’s hard to look beyond the dual-clutch box and poor tuning of the brakes – they make this version hard to recommend. This EDC gearbox came in for some stick in the hot Renaultsport Clio, and it’s no better in the Captur.

• Renault Clio RS review

Disqus - noscript

While automatics, DCTs, DSGs, CVTs are popular in US, China and the Middle East, yet am I the only one who thinks that Renault is shooting itself in the foot by not offering manual gearboxes in UK and Europe?

They do....

Key specs

  • Price: £17,195
  • Engine: 1.2-litre 4cyl petrol
  • Power: 118bhp
  • Transmission: Six-speed EDC dual-clutch, front-wheel drive
  • 0-60mph/top speed: 10.9 secs/119mph
  • Economy/CO2: 52.3mpg/125g/km
  • Equipment: 17-inch alloys, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth, sat-nav
  • On sale: Now
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