Launched in 2010 as an inexpensive, no-frills off-roader, the unique Dacia Duster helped launch the crossover craze in Europe. It has moved barely upmarket since, and the third-generation mannequin makes its debut with an outdoorsy look and extra tech whereas staying true to its roots.
The brand new crossover stretches about 171 inches lengthy, 71 inches broad and 65 inches tall, so it is virtually precisely the identical measurement because the outgoing mannequin. Dacia borrowed the CMF-B platform from father or mother firm Renault for the third-generation Duster. It is a unibody structure that additionally underpins small hatchbacks just like the Renault Clio and the Dacia Logan, however the Duster stays obtainable with four-wheel drive.
Whereas the general proportions have not modified a lot, the brand new Duster stands out with a extra rugged-looking exterior design characterised by a tall, upright entrance finish, a beneficiant serving of plastic cladding, and punched-out wheel arches. A number of the trim items are made utilizing a fabric known as Starkle that Dacia developed in-house with assist from chemical firm LyondellBasell; these bits are deliberately left unpainted. Out again, the C-shaped lights are pushed out to the sides of every quarter panel to emphasise the crossover’s sense of width.
Many homeowners use their Duster as a pair of mountaineering boots on wheels, so Dacia properly resisted the urge to pack the cabin with posh options that add price and complexity. The third-generation mannequin stays extremely purposeful, however it’s not practically fundamental as the unique. The motive force sits in entrance of a tall, flat dashboard, a three-spoke steering wheel and an obtainable 10.1-inch touchscreen angled to the left by 10 levels. One of many new additions to the record of choices is a Sleep Pack, which features a huge, detachable mattress platform that turns the Duster right into a camper.
At launch, consumers could have three powertrains to select from. The entry-level engine is a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine turbocharged to 130 horsepower. Working with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system, the triple spins the entrance wheels by way of a six-speed guide transmission; four-wheel drive is non-obligatory on this model. Subsequent up is a 143-horsepower hybrid system that consists of a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, two electrical motors and an computerized transmission. Lastly, an undetailed engine that is able to burning both LPG or gasoline will probably be supplied as effectively.
Whereas the Duster is not obtainable with a two-speed switch case, the four-wheel-drive variant needs to be extra succesful off-road than the common crossover. It affords 8.5 inches of floor clearance and method, breakover and departure angles of 31, 24 and 36 levels, respectively. As a facet notice, the Duster additionally tends to spend extra time off-road than the common crossover. In lots of elements of Europe, these are purchased by people searching for an even bigger various to fashions just like the Suzuki Jimny, a extra fashionable various to the Lada Niva and a less expensive and smaller various to the Toyota Land Cruiser. Many international locations, like France, use the Duster as fire-fighting and regulation enforcement vehicles.
In-built Pitesti, Romania, the third-generation Dacia Duster will go on sale throughout Europe and in quite a few different international markets within the not-too-distant future. Pricing info hasn’t been launched, however we’re instructed it “will proceed to meet Dacia’s value-for-money pledge.” For context, the current-generation Duster carries a base worth of €17,990, which represents round $19,800 on the present conversion fee.