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Renault Captur interior, tech and practicality

Comfort and visibility

Inside, the Renault Captur offers a mix of analogue and digital controls. All models get a touchscreen infotainment system and semi-digital dials, but also proper buttons and dials for the air conditioning and steering wheel controls.

The quality of the materials and how they’re put together is markedly improved over the old Captur, and we think it’s up there with the class best. Everything feels well built, even if the Peugeot 2008 arguably does have the more stylish design.

It’s a little disappointing that even high-spec Captur models get quite a few blank buttons on the dashboard fascia and the steering wheel, which cheapens the feel a little bit.

All-round visibility is generally pretty good, with the usual caveat that the thick rear pillars (and, in this case, the small triangular rear windows) reduce how much you can see behind you.

Standard equipment

When the Captur was first launched, things started off with Play trim. This gets automatic air conditioning, LED lights all round, auto emergency braking, auto wipers and cruise control. Most buyers stepped up the ladder to at least Iconic trim, which adds rear parking sensors, alloy wheels, roof rails and two-tone paintwork. Then there’s S Edition, with its reversing camera, front parking sensors, auto high beam, blind-spot warning and built-in sat nav on a bigger touchscreen, while RS Line (added later) brings sporty looks, aluminium pedals and lots of RS badges.

Later Evolution and Techno cars largely match the Iconic and S Edition trim levels in earlier cars, although now two-tone paint is no longer standard.

Infotainment and audio

Every Captur gets an infotainment system, which is well placed and fairly easy to navigate around. It’s fairly quick to respond and load, although a couple of functions take too many presses – such as changing the volume, which needs an initial press to bring up the volume slider. There are also volume controls on a stalk behind the steering wheel – not the most intuitive place but they’re easy to use once you remember their position.

Two screen sizes are available: a seven-inch screen is fitted on Play, Iconic, Evolution and Techno trims, while S Edition and RS Line feature a portrait-oriented 9.3-inch screen. The larger screen features sat nav, although every Captur includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto so you can plug your phone in and use your familiar apps on the car’s screen.

High-spec cars also get a digital instrument cluster, which looks a little more modern than the more conventional dials you get on most versions.

Rear seat space

Not many small SUVs offer the flexibility of a sliding rear seat bench, but the Captur does. It slides back and forth by as much as 16cm, which feels like a lot when you use it in the real world. With the seats fully back, there’s a lot of legroom – it feels very similar to the spacious Skoda Kamiq. Drag the seats fully forwards and even short adults will find their knees pushing into the front seatbacks, but there’s still just enough room for passengers on short, infrequent journeys. If you needed extra boot space for Christmas presents or Ikea furniture, it’s a handy feature to take advantage of.

Wherever the seats are, headroom and foot room are both pretty good. You’ll have to be very tall to get close to the headliner, while the front seats’ high position improves things for rear legs. Whoever’s back there gets a 12v socket, into which you can plug a USB adaptor and charge your devices, and air vents, as well as big door pockets.

The rear Isofix points are a little awkward to access, but that should only be an issue if you’re regularly swapping car seats between cars. The rear doors open nice and wide to make it easy to get kids in and out and, handily, some Capturs also come with a third set of Isofix points on the front passenger seat.

It’s worth noting that the Captur feels quite narrow, even in the front seats, so it’s unlikely to be comfortable for three adults across the rear seats.

Boot space

Depending on where you’ve got the back seats, the Captur offers either competitive or class-leading boot space. In maximum legroom mode, the Captur still offers 422 litres – about the same as a Nissan Juke and more than the SEAT Arona – while pushing the seats all the way forward increases the available loading area to a whopping 536 litres.

Choosing one of the hybrid engines limits boot space slightly. The hybrid engine that doesn’t need plugging in gives you 326-440 litres of boot space, while the bigger battery of the plug-in hybrid means you only get between 265 and 379 litres to play with. No spare wheel option on the PHEV, either.

The opening itself is nice and square, and there’s not much of a lip to haul heavy items over – although the bottom of the boot is a little higher than we’d like.

In-cabin storage is pretty decent, with a phone-sized tray ahead of the gearlever and a bottle-shaped storage cubby in the central armrest. There’s also a slot for the keycard next to the handbrake and an okay-sized glovebox.

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