The Bargain of the Year: Dacia Duster
Can the UK’s cheapest 4x4 survive the Southern Hemisphere’s harshest mountains?
Posted: 09 Jan 2013
It is deep darkness as we begin the descent to Caraz, the nearest town. The tarmac road is now open. This proves to be A Bad Thing. The tarmac road turns out to be a track barely a lane wide, hacked into the side of a cliff, covered in a film of gravelly dust, devoid of markings or barriers. Below my left shoulder twinkle Caraz's lights, over a mile straight down. If we slide off the road, that's what we're hitting.
What follows is the most nerve-wracking hour of my life. Not that rollercoasterish oh-god-I'm-about-to-die-oh-no-I'm-alive-hahaha sort of fear, the sort quick-hit adrenaline addicts seek out, but a fear far more unpleasant and pervasive, the knowledge that the merest brush of the wrong pedal, a fractional misjudgement of steering, a misreading of the road, will result in plummety death. Hairpins are the worst, steering into empty darkness, no point on the road on which to fix your aim.