Chevrolet Captiva 2.2 VCDi LTZ AWD

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Price: £30,295 (Captiva range starts at £21,995)

Top speed: 124 mph

0-60mph 9.3 seconds

Consumption: 42.8 mpg

CO2 emissions: 174 g/km

Rivals: Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento, Vauxhall Antara

When Chevrolet’s Captiva appeared in 2006, it was a sound design but one that lacked polish. It was a product of the former Daewoo operations in Korea that had been acquired by General Motors, and was one of the first cars from that stable designed to appeal to a broader international audience. With modifications, it was sold in large numbers around the world under a variety of GM brands, including Vauxhall, which offers a version as the Antara.

The first Captivas combined a modern, roomy, not unattractive body with a disappointing interior that was designed to appeal more to American and Asian, rather than European, tastes. In dynamic terms, they were broadly competitive, but the initial engine line-up couldn’t match the best European efforts.

Now Chevrolet has brought in a revamped model with a series of updates that address these former weak points - and it has done a good job. A restyled nose with a fashionable deep grille gives a fresh, sharper look but it is the under-the-skin improvements that are most important. The revised Captiva’s interior reflects the progress Chevrolet has made since 2006 with the cabins of the mid-sized Cruze saloon and the Orlando people carrier; Euro-tasteful dark greys and blacks replace the lighter shades that were previously seen, and the quality of the materials used seems to have had a bit of a lift as well.

The Captiva now has an all-diesel engine range. There are two 2.2-litre power units, one pushing out 163 horsepower, which is fitted to the cheaper two-wheel drive versions, and a second, producing 184 horsepower, which is used in the more expensive variants which have an “on-demand” all-wheel drive system; that compares with the 150 horsepower provided by previous Captiva diesels. Variable geometry turbochargers, already familiar from the Cruze and the Orlando are also employed here, with impressive results; the more powerful of the two Captiva diesels, at least, is strong and smooth, and closes the gap with the competition. Transmission options are a six-speed manual, available on all variants, and a new six-speed automatic that can only be ordered in conjunction with all-wheel drive. Chevrolet is also playing up the role of testing at Millbrook (originally built as GM’s UK development facility) in optimising the Captiva’s ride and handling set-up for British conditions, a nod, perhaps, to the widely-held but unproven belief within the industry that our roads are uniquely terrible and that cars developed for other countries can’t necessarily quite cut the mustard here.

One minus: Chevrolet, despite its long history in the US, is still an emerging brand in Europe, but the Captiva is not especially cheap. At the top end, prices for the best-equipped models with LTZ trim break the £30,000 barrier, a level at which some (admittedly mainly smaller) SUVs with fancier badges are available. On the plus side, though, the Captiva does offer pretty generous equipment levels.

The upgraded Captiva doesn’t offer anything like the sort of excitement promised by Chevrolet’s forthcoming electric vehicle, the Volt, and still isn’t quite as complete or well-rounded a car as the current pick of the company’s range, the Orlando, but it nevertheless represents good solid progress.

Sport
The sun rises over St Andrews golf course, but will it be a new dawn for the Royal and Ancient Golf Club?
sportAnd it's Yes to women (at the R&A)
Arts and Entertainment
Friends is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year
tvSeries celebrates 20th anniversary
Sport
Yaya Touré (left) and Bayern Munich’s Spanish defender Juan Bernat
footballToure's lack of defensive work is big problem for City
Voices
voicesApple continually kill off smaller app developers, and that's no good for anyone
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't
tv

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

Sport
Wembley Stadium
footballNews follows deal with Germany
Arts and Entertainment
A spell in the sun: Emma Stone and Colin Firth star in ‘Magic in the Moonlight’
filmReview: Magic In The Moonlight
Sport
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo
football

Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear
tv

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style
life

News
ScienceGallery: Otherwise known as 'the best damn photos of space you'll see till 2015'
Life and Style
fashion

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Volunteer your expertise as Trustee for The Society of Experimental Biology

    Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Promising volunteer Trustee op...

    Email Designer

    £30000 - £35000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

    Psychology Teacher

    £110 - £130 per hour: Randstad Education Reading: Psychology Teacher needed fo...

    Food Technology Teacher

    £85 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: Randstad Education are curren...

    Day In a Page

    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    The Imitation Game, film review
    England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

    England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

    Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week