The Bargain of the Year: Dacia Duster
Can the UK’s cheapest 4x4 survive the Southern Hemisphere’s harshest mountains?
Posted: 09 Jan 2013
The summit of the Huinchas Pass stands 14,271 feet above sea level. There's a dizzying tarmac road to the top, but we're solemnly informed this is closed. (Either ‘closed' or ‘dead' - my Spanish isn't great.) So, demonstrating the do-or-almost-certainly-die mentality for which Top Gear is famed, we are now heading for the top of Peru up a mud path that makes our earlier dirt road look like the M6 toll.
This place isn't so much off the beaten track as unaware of the existence of a beaten track. We wind higher and higher, over boulders and rockslides, through jungly ferns and cacti, past tiny villages of wood shacks and crumbling stone. Judging by the stares of the farmers we pass, we might be the first gringos to pass through this century. Stopping for photos, one tiny, wizened grandma becomes obsessed with my blue eyes, a situation I find quite charming until it becomes apparent she is seriously contemplating removing them from my face to keep as souvenirs.