Renault Extend Hybrid Tech to Captur

Renault is extending its electrified model range with the launch of the Renault Captur E-Tech Hybrid.

It joins the existing PHEV and gasoline engine variants of the compact SUV which has sold more 150,000 units since it was introduced in 2013. It says the conversion to a full hybrid was facilitated by being based on the versatile CMF-B modular architecture, which was designed from the start to accept electric capabilities.

E-Tech hybrid technology debuted on the Clio E-Tech hybrid, which was engineered with input from the Alpine F1 team. It combines a 1.6-liter gasoline engine with a 1.2 kW lithium-ion battery and two electric motors, together with the automatic, multi-mode dog gearbox that features in all other E-Tech models. In operation, it starts the vehicle in 100% electric mode, significantly reducing the gap in acceleration during gear changes.

It is designed to use the optimal energy output to recharge the battery whenever the energy created is more than the required power. Then, kinetic energy recovered during deceleration or braking can be transformed into electrical energy to recharge the battery. The electrical energy is then in reserve to assist with acceleration, or for all-electric operation at lower speeds in urban areas, later in a journey.

The Captur’s hybrid powertrain offers three levels of energy regeneration and regenerative braking:

  • D Mode – The main electric motor works as a generator by recovering kinetic energy produced by the deceleration, turning it into electrical energy that is sent back to the battery;
  • B Mode – By nudging the gear selector backwards, allowing one pedal driving when driving in full electric mode, increasing the level of regeneration allowed by the battery, up to an idling speed of around 4mph;
  • Braking – This is triggered electrically, with mechanical braking support from the brake pads if necessary. The electric motor provides additional braking here, recovering excess energy and returning it to the battery that can be deployed again later on.

The Captur E-Tech Hybrid generates 142bhp delivering a zero to 62mph sprint time of 10.6 seconds and a maximum speed of 106mph placing it just behind the E-Tech PHEV in terms of performance. It emits as little as 114g/km CO2 and claims fuel economy of up to 56.6mpg (47.13mpg US).

The Captur E-Tech Hybrid is available in Iconic, S Edition and R.S Line levels of trim. It is available to order in Europe now, with first deliveries in August.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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