The good story from Romania got a sequel, the second generation with Franco-Japanese technology is finally ‘up to the task’ in everything, the chassis and transmission are excellent, and the strongest asset is the reinforced Renault diesel.
The time has finally come, the first generation of Duster has been sent into retirement, and a completely new, much more advanced model is entering the scene. The virtues of Romanians are very well known to every car lover, even a layman. But does the new generation bring significant progress or just aesthetic changes?
If we look at the new Duster from the outside, you will notice that the biggest novelty is the new grille, more precisely the light assemblies they now bring, the nicely fitted LED daytime running lights, as well as the LED headlight. The same story is with the rear of the vehicle, to whose lights we are all still getting used. The tested copy also arrived on attractive new 17-inch alloy wheels, which do not limit Duster’s ambitions in the mud. In addition, it is important to note that the minimum distance from the car to the ground is a full 21 cm, which speaks volumes about the intentions of Duster. Opening doors, which are still sharp-edged a bit angry, because we don’t want to think about the possible consequences if we quickly get stuck behind them when opening / closing. But when we get behind the wheel, the main news is immediately noticed. First of all, the instrument panel has been trimmed, and the steering wheel became much more refined. Still, we are surprised that the keys on it do not light up at night. If for nothing else, at least for the impression.
A similar problem is with the complete armature, which still remained plastic. This will only disappoint those who ‘suffer’ from such things, although we have the impression that Renault could have given in a bit and given Dacia someone at hand with finer material. Details like knobs and temperature dials (available with automatic climate control) is what we really like. They look like they were borrowed from some more prestigious model. With the Prestige equipment list, you also get the Media Nav Evolution, a 7-inch central screen that brings a view of 360 cameras, as well as navigation. The interior has undergone evident progress, but they still have room for improvement, in fact as much as the Renault-Nissan Group allows.
In terms of spaciousness, the second-generation Duster is somewhat more generous, but not overly so since the 30mm in length isn’t of any significant nature. The four passengers will be accommodated with no problems, as will their luggage in the 411-liter boot. Driving a new Duster will buy you, if not already. The raised seating position, the prominent bonnet from the driver’s perspective and the apparent massiveness are immediately visible at first glance, and through the ride you will realize how well-insulated this Romanian really is. If you are cruising on the road, you will have a feeling of comfort at speeds up to 130 km / h, which is especially commendable for this class and price threshold. Maneuvering in the parking lot convinced us why the Duster’s turning circle is only slightly larger than 10 meters. While the steering wheel is quite accommodating on winding roads,
The famous 1.5 dCi has been installed in a host of other models, from the concern to many other Renault partners… In terms of motorization, the tested model arrived in a 1.5-liter Blue dCi version. The well-known diesel engine, in a slightly refined tone, brings 110 hp. Great praise goes in the form of consumption, which in the test revolved around 4 to 5 liters in mixed driving conditions. Forget about some compelling performance! Power transmission to the wheels (most of the test we drove with 4 × 2 drive though) was tuned to more off-road vehicles. Therefore, don’t be surprised by Duster’s shortened gear ratios. The Duster allows you to move in second gear, and ‘shifting’ to 5th gear signals as early as 60 km / h. Even when we add a not overly precise manual, 5-speed transmission. All of this is very strange at first and requires getting used to, but a slightly different driving experience is easily adopted.
And at the end of the price, the initial model with a gasoline engine is 26,000 KM, while the test model with all-wheel drive in the best equipment you need to set aside 35,900 convertible marks.