- Head-turning looks
- Not great to drive
- Expensive to run
Spacious, practical seven seater SUV.
The Chevrolet Captiva is one of the best value SUVs on the market. Updated in 2011, the Captiva offers practicality and space in abundance. You’ll get plenty of kit for your money as well, no matter which spec you go for. It’s not especially great to drive however, and it’s not that comfortable or refined either. Interior quality also lags behind European rivals, whilst the diesel engine is a little bit noisy. But if you need a large family SUV with seven seats, and you don’t want to pay over the odds, the Captiva is a great option to consider.
Immensely practical, but let down by poor interior quality.
Step inside a Captiva and you might just be pleasantly surprised by the design. The quality of materials isn’t the best however, but there’s lots of practical storage solutions, which will please family buyers. And with a huge boot, and a generous equipment list, it offers great value for money.
The dashboard design of the Captiva is clean, modern, though the controls do feel a little bit cluttered. They can be confusing to get your head around at first, and they do feel rather cheap. The materials used for the dash itself aren’t a match for European rivals. Hard plastics are on show throughout the cabin, and it all feels a little bit low-rent. Despite this, the sheer amount of handy cubby holes will make storing your bits and bobs on the move simple and easy.
Practicality is king for most family buyers, and the Captiva certainly impresses in this department. With seven seats on nearly all models, large families are well catered for. The second row of seats offers loads of head, and legroom, and even the sixth and seventh seats are big enough for small adults. With five seats in place, the Captiva boasts a storage capacity of 465 litres. It’s a nice square shape, whilst the low load lip makes getting big, heavy items in and out a doddle.
Equipment is generous in the Captiva, no matter which model you go for. The entry-level LS trim features air-con, electric windows, alloy wheels, and Bluetooth connectivity. An upgrade to mid-range LT spec brings part-leather seats, a third row of seats, parking sensors, climate control, cruise control, and automatic lights and wipers. This is the spec that most buyers will want to go for. Though if you want a bit more luxury, LTZ trim brings full leather, a reversing camera, and satnav into the fold.
The inside of the Captiva is a bit of a mixed bag. There’s no doubting its credentials when it comes to family focused space and practicality. The interior does feel a little bit cheap, but it is reasonably well constructed. And with so much kit included, you won’t ever feel wanting.
Comfortable around town, but struggles at speed.
Large family SUVs aren’t known for their handling credentials, and the Captiva isn’t a car that breaks the mould. In fact, it’s not even one of the best cars in its class. The steering is vague, and offers little in the way of feedback. The fact that it’s so light does make parking in town quite easy for such a big car however. Despite Chevrolet stiffening the suspension up in 2011, the Captiva still rolls around a lot in the corners. So if you’ve got kids that are prone to car sickness, you better tread lightly through winding B-roads.
Suspension and Chassis
In terms of comfort and refinement, the Captiva also falls some way short of the other cars on offer in this class. To be fair, at lower speeds, the Captiva easily soaks up deep potholes and speed bumps. But at speed things start to get a little unsettled. Rough surfaces at the national speed limit make the car bounce around a fair bit, which can get annoying after a while. The Captiva’s shape also means that it produces quite a lot of road and wind noise. So if you plan on doing a lot of motorway miles, the Captiva might not be the car for you.
Gearbox options in the Captiva come in two guises. The standard across most of the range is a six speed manual transmission. It’s not the most pleasant box to use, due to its vagueness, clunkiness, and inaccuracy. An automatic drivetrain is also available with the Captiva. Though it is fairly decent, it massively reduces fuel economy, whilst also increasing road tax. So unless you have the money, it might be one to avoid.
Two gruff-sounding diesel engines.
When it comes to deciding how you want to power your Captiva, you’ve only got one option: diesel. There are two versions of the same engine on offer, with different power outputs. Both are noisy, and neither are particularly great for the environment, or the wallet.
If it’s power that you want from your Captiva, you’ll want to go for the more powerful 2.2 litre diesel engine. It produces 181bhp, and a huge 295lb/ft of torque. With this under the bonnet, your Captiva will accelerate from 0-62mph in 9.7 seconds. Pretty good figures for a car of this size. The huge amount of torque also means that the Captiva is a great car to consider if you tow a caravan or a trailer. Whatever you use it for, it’ll always be noisy unfortunately.
Eco-conscious buyers don’t usually go for big, bulky SUVs, and they certainly won’t like what the Captiva has to offer. The lower-powered 2.2 litre diesel, in five seater form, is the greenest model in the range. It produces 164g/km of CO2 emissions, which is some way short of the best on offer in this class. Money-savers will want to go for this model as well, though again, it’s hardly economical. A £185 tax bill is expensive in this day and age, though it’s far cheaper than the £295 bill that the more powerful engine demands. Fuel economy of up to 45mpg is decent however.
Both engines in the Captiva are powerful enough to cope in almost every situation. Unfortunately they are let down by their noisiness, their high emissions, and above average running costs. The lesser powered diesel will be the best option for most buyers.
Full marks in NCAP safety tests, with decent standard safety kit.
Like almost every car in its class, the Chevrolet Captiva easily achieved the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. It scored highly in both adult safety (88%), and child safety (82%), but was let down by a poor score in pedestrian safety (48%). The 71% it achieved for safety assist is pretty standard for the class. Standard safety equipment includes six airbags, electronic stability control, hill-start assist, traction control, hill-descent control, and Isofix child seat mounting points. It’s a pretty safe package, so you can always know that you and your family will be safe from harm.
Good value for money, but only if you buy a used model.
The Chevrolet Captiva, even from new, has always been a cheap car to buy compared to its rivals. Not only does it feature a lower list price, it also comes with more kit as standard. The Captiva does depreciate more than most cars, however, so you should always buy used. Running costs are however pretty expensive, no matter which model you go for. If you value not bleeding your bank account dry, stick to models that come with the lower powered diesel engine.
Insurance groups for the Captiva again depend on which model you go for. It’s not an especially cheap car to insure, but it stacks up well against its rivals. The Captiva range starts in group 24 for the entry-level 2.2 VCDi (163bhp) LS FWD, and climbs up towards group 32 for the range-topping 2.2 VCDi (181bhp) LTZ (7 Seats) Auto.
Depreciation is a huge factor with the Captiva, but only if you choose to buy from new. With first year depreciation as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
The Chevrolet Captiva is a large family-focused SUV that impresses in a number of areas. It’s spacious, practical, safe, and comes with plenty of kit as standard. Unfortunately it is let down by a poor ride, driving experience, and some rather thirsty engines. But, due to high levels of depreciation, the Captiva can be an absolute bargain buy when you go for used examples. If you need a seven seat SUV on a budget, the Captiva is a great option to consider.
Buying a used Chevrolet Captiva online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Chevrolet Captiva for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used Captiva. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Chevrolet Captiva online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Chevrolet? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Chevrolet Captiva, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used Captiva, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Chevrolet to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.