The Dacia Duster is classified as a compact sport utility vehicle and is produced by French carmaker Renault as well as Dacia, its Romanian subsidiary company. Production of this vehicle began in 2010 and it was initially marketed as the Renault Duster in various markets, including Iran, Russia, South Africa, Mexico, South America, and India. The Duster was first displayed to the public at the Geneva Motor Show in 2010 and is the third model to use the Logan platform. This vehicle was voted best car of the year a jury that made up a total of 15 different countries.
When the Duster was initially introduced, it was as the ice racing version prepared for the Andros Trophy, and presented for the very first time in November of 2009. The production version of this vehicle was unveiled later in December of that year and ultimately revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in March of 2010. This vehicle is heavily based on the B0 platform and measures a total of 4.31 meters long and 1.82 meters wide with a ground clearance of 210 mm or 8.3”. The luggage capacity of this vehicle is 475 liters or 16.8 cubic feet.
The Duster can be purchased with either 2-wheel or 4-wheel drive and there are 4×4 variants which utilize Nissan’s all-wheel drive system, allowing the driver to select from three different driving modes. The first of these modes is Auto, which engages rear-wheel drive automatically in the event that the front wheels lose their grip. There is also Lock mode, in which 50 percent of the vehicle’s torque is fed through the rear axle, and 2 wheel drive in which the transmission becomes locked into front-wheel drive to maximize fuel efficiency.
In September of 2013, the Duster received a significant facelift and was revealed for the first time at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The exterior of this vehicle was changed a bit to increase a chrome grille as well as redesigned headlights and restyled roof bars along with 16” wheels. The interior of the Duster was changed to include features that were similar to some previous models in the Dacia lineup. One of the more noteworthy and exciting additions that came with the 2013 facelift was the new TCe 125 1.2 liter direct-injection turbo engine. This engine was a great improvement on its predecessor, offering more power and fuel efficiency.
There are a number of safety features which the Dacia Duster comes with, including Bosch 8.1 ABS along with electronic brakeforce distribution and emergency brake assist. This car also comes with electronic stability control as an optional feature on certain models, and an understeer control and traction control. These features allow the vehicle’s torque to be transferred from a spinning wheel in 4×4 mode to improve traction when diagonal wheel spin occurs. The Duster comes standard with two front airbags as well as three-point safety belts with load limiters in the front seats. There are also certain versions of this vehicle which have two lateral head/thorax airbags which are fitted to offer additional protection in the event of a side impact.
The Duster underwent a rigorous Euro NCAP safety test in 2011 and received a total of three out of five possible stars. This car was given 27 points or 74% for adult occupant protection and 38 points or 78% for child occupant protection, and 10 points or 28% for pedestrian protection. While the Duster may not have scored highly on all fronts, it does include a number of safety features which its predecessors did not. All in all, this vehicle is definitely a popular choice among consumers and one of Dacia’s crowning achievements.