The Renault Captur E-Tech Plug-In Hybrid: The Complete Guide For India

The Renault Captur E-Tech Plug-In Hybrid India
Price: N/A
Type of electric vehicle: Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
Body type: SUV
Battery size: 9.8 kWh
Electric range (WLTP): 29 - 31 miles
Tailpipe emissions: 34g (CO2/km)


Electric Cars: The Basics


For those of you new to zero-emission electric driving, we recommend a read of the following articles:


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The Renault Captur PHEV Compact SUV


Groupe Renault (Renault Group), is a leading player in the global automotive sector. Renault is now part of the global Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance. The partnership makes these companies the 3rd largest automotive group in the world after Volkswagen and Toyota. Renault is headquartered in France.

Renault has been an early mover in the zero-emission electric driving sector and has established a leading position. The automotive manufacturer offers a number of well known battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), to include:

The Renault Captur compact SUV was launched in 2013 at the Geneva Motor Show. The concept version was unveiled in 2011. The SUV is now in its second generation. The Captur is also available as a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV).

If you are not limited by the notion ‘that only premium brands can fit your lifestyle’, then the Renault Captur plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is worth considering for its ‘value proposition’. Given the relatively more affordable retail price, along with the lower cost of emission-free electric driving, the PHEV can deliver decent financial savings for families and companies.

The PHEV has a 9.8 kWh onboard EV battery and a WLTP certified electric range up to 31 miles. Both are typical of this type of plug-in hybrid electric car. However, expect the real-world electric range to be closer to 26 miles. The EV range is impacted by a number of factors, to include: driving profile, speed, load, regenerative braking, road condition, weather, wheel size and a lot more.

Do keep in mind that a vast number of trips are below 10 miles, and a 31 miles pure electric driving range is sufficient for day-to-day commutes. Moreover, the majority of motorists drive no more than 30 miles a day.

The Renault PHEV pairs a 1.6-litre (4-cylinder) petrol engine with an electric motor, powered by an onboard EV battery. The automotive manufacturer claims a fuel economy up to 188.3 mpg for the electric vehicle (EV). Of course the real-world fuel economy will depend on a number of factors, but none as influential as using the e-mode.

Bottom-line, to increase the fuel economy of the electric vehicle and lower the driving costs, the PHEV should be driven as much as possible on the e-mode. It is also far cheaper to drive on electric mode, compared to using the combustion engine. Of course, driving on e-mode has the added benefit of a smoother and quieter drive.

Taking advantage of the EV range will also require inculcating a habit of charging the EV on a regular basis, which again is as easy as charging a smartphone. We at e-zoomed recommend the use of a dedicated EV charging station, like easee to charge the EV. We do not encourage the use of a domestic 3-PIN plug. The EV incorporates a 3.7 kW AC onboard charger and is not capable of DC charging. It can be fully charged in 3 hours. The manufacturer offers a 8 years or 100,000 miles warranty.

The performance of the electric SUV will not set the heart racing, but it does the job! The front-wheel drive Renault Captur E-Tech plug-in hybrid can achieve 0-62 mph in 10.1 seconds, with a top speed of 107 mph. The hybrid drivetrain delivers a maximum power of 160 HP (torque: 205 Nm), sufficient for city and motorway driving. Do keep in mind that the additional weight of the onboard EV battery does impact the overall performance of the electric vehicle (EV Kerb weight: 1,564 kg).

The EV has a decent level of standard features and equipment, to include: lane departure warning, lane keep assist, cruise control, rear view camera, eco mode, hands free keycard with keyless entry etc. The electric SUV has been awarded a Five-Star NCAP safety rating. The boot space has been impacted by the placement of the EV battery, nevertheless, the EV offers a cargo volume up to 261 L.

Bottom-line, the Renault Captur plug-in hybrid SUV has much to offer, for those seeking ‘value for money’, in an environmentally-friendly electric vehicle. The EV has claimed tailpipe emissions up to 34g CO2/km. Again, substantially lower than the emissions of the conventional combustion engine variant. The Renault plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is not available in India.


PROS CONS
Perfect for city drivingPerformance will not set the heart racing
Affordable PHEVAlternatives have better electric range
Decent level of standard equipmentSome cheap materials

Gallery


The Renault Captur PHEV SUV (credit: Renault)


One of the key advantages of driving an electric vehicle (EV), is that, it is cheaper to drive, compared to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE), petrol and diesel vehicles. For many years, we have witnessed a significant increase in prices at petrol pumps across India. However, this is not an ‘India’ only trend, but a global trend. We can continue to expect an inflation in global petrol and diesel prices for the foreseeable future.

Both, a pure electric car and a plug-in hybrid electric car, offer significant savings on driving costs per mile, when driven on zero-tailpipe emission electric mode. In India, filling a petrol or diesel car can cost anything between Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000. As an example, the very popular Audi Q7 diesel SUV has a fuel capacity of 85 litres. Assuming an average cost per litre of Rs 90, the cost of filling a full tank will be up to Rs 7,650!

In comparison, the all-electric Audi e-tron SUV , which is now available in India, and a similar size to the Audi Q7, can be fully recharged for less than Rs 1,000. Put another way, charging the Audi electric SUV, can save up to 85% compared to filling a full tank of fuel (in India, the average cost for residential electricity is between Rs 5 to Rs 10 per kWh).

At an average one can expect a cost per km of Rs 1 for a zero-emission EV, while for an equivalent petrol or diesel vehicle, the cost per km could be up to Rs 7 per km. The annual cost savings achieved by switching to electric driving is significant! The sooner you switch to green cars, the sooner you can start saving money. That is simply the bottom-line!


At A Glance
EV Type:Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
Body Type:SUV (Compact)
Engines:Petrol-Electric
Available In India:No

Variants (2 Options)
S.E. Edition
R.S. Line

EV Battery & Emissions
EV Battery Type:Lithium-ion
EV Battery Capacity:Available in one battery size: 9.8 kWh
Charging:DC charging not available. Onboard charger: 3.7 kW AC (0% – 100%: 3 hrs)
Charge Port:Type 2
EV Cable Type:Type 2
Tailpipe Emissions:34g (CO2/km)
Battery Warranty:8 years or 100,000 miles

Charging Times (Overview)
Slow charging AC (3 kW – 3.6 kW):6 – 12 hours (dependent on size of EV battery & SOC)
Fast charging AC (7 kW – 22 kW):3 – 8 hours (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Rapid charging AC (43 kW):0-80%: 20 mins to 60 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Rapid charging DC (50 kW+):0-80%: 20 mins to 60 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Ultra rapid charging DC (150 kW+):0-80% : 20 mins to 40 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Tesla Supercharger (120 kW – 250 kW):0-80%: up to 25 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)

Dimensions
Height (mm):1576
Width (mm):2003
Length (mm):4227
Wheelbase (mm):2639
Turning Circle (m):11.1
Boot capacity (L):261

E-TECH Plug-In Hybrid 160 Auto
EV Battery Capacity:9.8 kWh
Pure Electric Range (WLTP):29 – 31 miles
Electric Energy Consumption (kWh/100km):N/A
Fuel Consumption (MPG):188.3
Charging:DC charging not available. Onboard charger: 3.7 kW AC (0% – 100%: 3 hrs)
Top Speed:107 mph
0-62 mph:10.1 seconds
Drive:Front-wheel drive (FWD)
Electric Motor (kW):N/A
Max Power (HP):160
Torque (Nm):205
Transmission:Automatic
Seats:5
Doors:5
Kerb Weight (kg):1,564
Colours:15
NCAP Safety Rating:Five-Star

BEVs Vs PHEVs: Which Is Better?


Both, battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) have significant advantages over conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) petrol and diesel vehicles. However, when BEVs and PHEVs are compared together, the narrative is not as black & white. Both types of electric vehicles (EVs) have pros and cons, and depending on the buyer circumstances, one type of EV will be more appropriate.

Plug-in hybrid electric cars have played an important role in encouraging drivers to migrate to electric driving. ‘Familiarity’ and ‘range security’ offered by plug-in hybrid vehicles, have been key attributes in propelling buyers to migrate to electric driving. A PHEV in many respects is very similar to driving a conventional petrol/ diesel car, except for the introduction of an electric mode, regenerative braking and EV charging.

As an example, the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Plug-In Hybrid SUV, uses both, a petrol engine and an electric motor to propel the vehicle. The electric motor is driven by an onboard EV battery, which is charged via an external EV charging station. For those keen on ‘familiarity’, a PHEV, despite the addition of an electric motor, is very similar to driving a conventional petrol or diesel car.

The other impediment to migrating to EVs is range anxiety. In a PHEV there is no fear about an ’empty’ EV battery, as the vehicle can still be driven on the internal combustion engine (ICE). Bottom-line, for those in India keen to use an EV, but lack EV charging infrastructure and need to travel long distances on a regular basis, a plug-in hybrid electric car is more appropriate than a BEV.

Pure electric cars (BEVs) have come a long way over the past decade, since the introduction of the all-electric Nissan Leaf in 2010. In particular, in regards to increased EV range. Pure electric cars like the Tesla Model 3 can offer a range up to 360 miles (the first generation Leaf offered a range up to 73 miles). The Model 3 is not the only EV that can offer a long electric range. In fact, many of the recent EVs introduced have a range well over 200 miles on a full battery charge. This significant improvement in electric range has helped reduce the concern over range anxiety, enabling greater confidence in EVs.

Unlike PHEVs, pure electric cars are zero-tailpipe emission i.e. a BEV does not have a tailpipe and therefore does not pollute the air! The improvement in air quality, is one of the key advantages of choosing a BEV over a PHEV. The other key advantage is that a BEV is cheaper to drive and maintain, compared to a PHEV. This should come as no surprise as a BEV has only an electric motor/s, while a PHEV has an internal combustion engine, coupled with an electric motor. Put another way, a plug-in hybrid EV has many more moving parts and therefore more to maintain and repair overtime!

BEVs are well suited for businesses and families keen to improve local air quality and reduce the cost of driving. Of course, access to dedicated EV charging infrastructure at home and on the road is a prerequisite to owning a BEV!




Author

Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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