• Enhanced exterior styling
  • Upgrade to interior
  • More refined chassis
  • New electronics package
  • Improved NVH characteristics
  • Latest generation engines

General Motors South Africa (GMSA) has released a significantly restyled and refreshed Chevrolet Captiva SUV. Chevrolet has enhanced the popular Captiva SUV for 2011 to an extent that it is effectively an all new vehicle with a fresh new look, a number of interior upgrades, improved power trains for better performance and efficiency, refinements to the chassis, a new advanced electronics package and lower interior noise and vibration levels.

Enhanced exterior styling

Chevrolet’s Captiva ushered in a new era in design for the Chevrolet brand when it was first launched onto the international market five years ago. This was a design from a fresh and youthful design team that drew on global inputs and design cues to define this mid-sized SUV for world markets. The result was a vehicle with well-proportioned bold features that imparted a bold but sophisticated look.

Building on this proven formula the design team has revised the exterior styling of the Captiva for a fresh new look. This latest Captiva is immediately identified by its new face defined by a dual-port grille with black honeycomb inserts, chrome surrounds and prominent Chevrolet “bow-tie” insignia set in a body colour grille surround. A new headlamp treatment sees the lamp clusters sweep forward into the front corners of the vehicle with polycarbonate lenses providing a smooth surface over the functional elements of the lamp cluster.

The overall sleek appearance of the Captiva is defined by a swept windscreen and roof line that provide a sleek aero profile. The side view is complimented by a tight tyre-to-body relationship imparting a well-grounded appearance.

Upgraded interior

For this latest iteration of the Captiva, Chevrolet has introduced all new seat fabrics and interior décor appointments that impart an upscale ambience to the spacious interior. Ergonomics and comfort are improved with the adoption of revised controls for some front seat movements and the repositioning of controls to place them within easier and more intuitive reach of the driver.

The outlets for the ventilation system have been re-designed to more effectively direct the airflow within the cabin. Side window demist performance is significantly improved.

The centre console has been made longer and positioned slightly lower, for optimal armrest positioning. Dual cup-holders incorporated in the console have been improved to provide more stable retention of drinks containers. This improvement also applies to the cup-holders fitted to the second row seat centre armrest.

All models in the range are now fitted with a 6-CD front loader with eight speakers and a radio/CD combination with RDS functionality. Features include: MP3 compatibility; Bluetooth connectivity, and auxiliary input.

The analogue instrument cluster has been redesigned for up-to-date styling and visual appeal. Instrument illumination is by Chevrolet’s all-new signature Ice Blue lighting as found on the Chevrolet Cruze and Spark.

More refined chassis

Improvements to the Captiva for 2011 include numerous hardware and software enhancements to the chassis to build on an already high level of ride, handling and safety attributes.

Stopping performance is improved through revisions to the ABS software package and fine-tuning of the chassis. On the LTZ specification models 19 inch diameter wheels provide increased tyre contact area.

All models in the range are fitted with an electronic park-brake. The neat packaging of park-brake button in the centre console allows for better use of the interior space between front passenger and driver.

Aside from the packaging benefits, the electronic handbrake brings with it added functionality as well. Linked to the system is Hill Start Assist (HSA), a feature that holds the vehicle for 1,5 seconds after the brake pedal is released on grades of 3% and greater. This effectively eliminates rollback when moving away from rest on gradients.

Also featured in the electronic park brake package is Electronic Parking Brake Dynamic Assist (EPBDA). This feature allows the electronic brake control module to apply selective four-corner braking in conditions where it is required to slow the vehicle down in unstable conditions.

The front spring rate has been increased by 10% for enhanced ride and improved stability. Also at the front, a larger diameter anti-roll bar (or stability bar) is fitted together with stiffer mounting bushes for improved roll-stiffness.

Rear spring and damper rates have been revised as has the rear stabiliser bar. Improved insulation is provided on suspension mounting points to reduce the transmission of noise and vibration.

The front sub-frame has been revised to provide for added chassis rigidity. At the rear a hydraulic link has been added to reduce the incidence of vertical floor shake.

New electronics package

Significant amongst the improvements to the vehicle electronics system is the adoption of Regulated Voltage Control (RVC). This enables the intelligent control of the Captiva’s electrical system voltage for improved efficiencies.

Benefits of RVC include improved fuel economy and longer life for lamps, switches and relays and improved battery performance. The system continually monitors the state-of-charge of the battery and battery temperature to ensure optimised battery charging in all conditions.

Improved NVH characteristics

The NVH characteristics of the Captiva for 2011 have been improved through the adoption of a number of enhancements throughout the vehicle. This ensures added comfort levels and reduced strain on passengers when conducting a normal conversation in the vehicle.

Hydraulic engine mounts are employed to provide optimised isolation of engine vibration and noise. A revised air inlet system and exhaust system are tuned to provide the most efficient flow of inlet and exhaust gasses with the minimum of noise. In addition an isolator matt is fitted to the front dash panel area. Together these improvements contribute to a 3-decibel reduction in power train noise within the cabin.

Further noise reduction measures include the adoption of an acoustic type, multiple laminate windscreen, improved door seals, and the addition of acoustic mats in strategic areas to reduce noise transmission between the passenger and cargo area.

An upgrade to the roof-liner dampens noise transmission while enhanced liners in the wheel wells dampen road noise.

Latest generation engines

The new Chevrolet Captiva is powered by either a 2.4 litre Ecotec engine with variable valve timing that produces 123 kW and 230 Nm of torque, or a direct injection 3.0 litre V6 that delivers 190 kW with 288 Nm of torque. Both are latest generation engines from Chevrolet that offer exceptional fuel economy.

Combined cycle fuel economy is 8,8 l/100km for the front wheel drive 2.4 litre model and 9,2 l/100km for the all-wheel drive model. The 3.0 litre direct injection engine delivers combined cycle economy of 10,6 l/100km.