THE SUV SEGMENT has grown three times in the past five years – it’s a statistic that illustrates just how much Indians love their SUVs. And you know which SUV kick started this craze? The Duster! Sure we had Safaris and Scorpios for long before that but the Duster showed us that an SUV needn’t have any of the compromises of an SUV; that it can be as easy, as comfortable and as refined to drive as any regular car. It opened the floodgates and paved the way for every other manufacturer to barrel down the SUV road – compact, premium, pseudo, whatever – everybody wanted a slice of the (very profitable) SUV pie. Heck, Renault tapped so deeply into the craze that they even went and slapped SUV cues on their hatchback to create the Kwid.
Yet in the SUV race, Renault has been left behind. Forget the compact SUVs like the Vitara Brezza, and surely the Tata Nexon after those crazy prices, even the Creta still does close to 10,000 units a month and that’s after being around for two years. The Duster does 15 per cent of that. There’s obviously a market and this is Renault’s stab at getting back into the game that it once owned. Captur with a C
Now this is so confusing even I made a boo-boo. Renault will proudly tell you that over one million Capturs are on the road in 75 countries. But what needs to be kept in mind is that there are two distinct Capturs. The European Captur is based on the Clio platform while the Asian, or rather BRICS Kaptur is based on the Duster. It’s the Kaptur that we get in India, but it is still spelt Captur.
Visually the Captur and Kaptur look almost identical and are in step with Renault’s new design language with a bold and expressive grille, the Renault lozenge taking pride of place, and