Whether you have an actual mountain climb, or even if it just seems that way sometimes, the dependable Duster will help you over it. Now in its second generation, and completely new inside and out, the Duster does all the things an SUV should do, except for emptying your wallet. And with a proper 4x4 system available, it can open up whole new worlds, far from any road… or just get you across a muddy festival field. Time to see what’s it’s made of.Advertisement - Page continues below
A PROPERLY RUGGED RUNABOUT
From the sculpted bonnet to the new rear lights, and chunky arches housing optional 17-inch alloys, the Duster looks ready for anything. And that scratch-resistant front skid plate isn’t just for show: the Duster is a genuinely rugged runabout, with or without four-wheel-drive.
IT’S LIKE A ROAD-GOING RUCKSACK
The Duster is the same compact size of the old one yet roomier than ever. In the cabin there’s over 28 litres of smart storage space surrounding driver and passengers, and up to 445 litres in the boot. Up top, roof bars allow you to carry all sorts from roof boxes to bike racks and kayaks. Which is good news, if you ever needed an excuse to buy a kayak.Advertisement - Page continues below
But what about those everyday adventures? Or if you’re just stuck in traffic? The Duster has you covered there too. The dashboard and interior deliver comfort and quality way above what the price tag might suggest, cabin noise has been halved versus the outgoing model and there’s a touchscreen display plus rotary controls and piano-key switches for easy operation.
4x4 = 16, OBVIOUSLY. BUT ENOUGH MATHS ALREADY
The Duster, of course, is available with an adventure-spec four-wheel-drive system. Grassy slopes, muddy furrows, festival fields… you name it, the Duster can handle it. Go for 4x4 and you also get Hill Descent Control, plus a digital compass and vehicle angle display, making the trip back down that mountain as surefooted as the journey up. High ground clearance helps too.
MADE OF TOUGH STUFF
It’s not just rugged, it’s also robust. The Duster’s built-in toughness has been tested to the limit over the equivalent of more than 2.5 million miles in the most demanding climates and driving conditions. And while you might not be planning a round-the-world expedition just yet, it’s nice to know that you could. Think about that as you load the boot with shopping.
SAFE AND SOUND
The Duster features a range of tech and safety equipment never before seen in the Dacia range. For starters, there are full-length curtain airbags, as well as automatic headlights, a blind spot warning system and a multi-view camera – featuring four cameras around the car to help keep an eye on what’s around you. Useful when manoeuvring, but also when picking your way over rocky roads.Advertisement - Page continues below
LOADED WITH TECH
Other new features include keyless entry, climate control and a smart MediaNav system – fitted as standard to the mid-range Comfort trim and above, and including satellite navigation, DAB radio plus Apple Carplay and Android Auto compatibility, as well as Siri voice control, so you can keep your eyes on the road.
UNDER THE BONNET
There are four engine options to choose from: one dCI diesel and three TCe petrol models, including the new three-cylinder, turbocharged TCe 100 Bi-Fuel– featuring innovative tech such as an electrically controlled wastegate to boost performance, torque and responsiveness, while reducing emissions compared to the SCe 115 it replaces.Advertisement - Page continues below
The Duster is also now available with a new factory-fitted dual-fuel engine – making Dacia the only manufacturer in the UK to do so. The all-new 1.0-litre turbo Bi-Fuel 100 engine combines petrol and LPG fuel to deliver reduced fuel costs, lower emissions and improved performance over the standard TCe engine.
PICK YOUR SPEC
There are five simple trim levels to choose from; Access, Essential, Comfort, SE TWENTY and Prestige. Whichever you choose, you’ll get core features such as electric power steering, height-adjustable front headrests and seat belts, ECO mode and Stop and Start, gearshift indicator, a Thatcham-approved engine immobiliser, automatic door lock, a tyre inflation kit (4x2 models) and emergency spare wheel (4x4 models), ABS and Emergency Brake Assist, Electronic Stability Control and Traction Control and ISOFIX points in the rear.
Take your Duster up a notch with a range of official, affordable accessories. There’s an Off-Road Pack (£323), including side door protectors and wheel arch mouldings; a Premier Pack (£395)
including illuminated door sills, boot sill protector and side steps (available separately) to make it easier to get in or reach the roof; and a Styling Pack (£374) including front and side chrome bars.
To find out more, visit www.dacia.co.uk.