The ever-popular Dacia Duster benefits from a package of styling and trim upgrades for the 2015 model year - but there's no increase in the brand's no-nonsense, "shockingly affordable" pricing.
The line-up continues to consist of two- and four-wheel-drive models based on three trim levels and two engines. The entry-level Access is powered by a 105 hp 1.6-litre 16-valve petrol engine, while the mid-range Ambiance and top-grade Lauréate versions have a 107 hp (109 hp on 4x4 versions) 1.5-litre dCi 110 turbodiesel power unit. Prices start at less than £9,500 for the two-wheel-drive Access model and under £11,500 for the four-wheel-drive version.
New for 2015 is a more stylish chrome front grille made up of two layers of four small intakes surrounding the Dacia logo. All versions now have 'Duster' branded roof bars – chromed on Lauréate models. At the rear, a black tailgate trim with 'Duster' branding sits above the number plate. Lauréate versions have smart new Tyrol 16-inch alloy wheels, body-coloured door handles and dark metal door mirror casings. Five new metallic colours – Mercury, Khaki, Pearl Black, Slate Grey and Cinnamon – replace the previous choices as alternatives to solid Glacier White on the Ambiance and Lauréate.
There is new upholstery and seats for every model. Access versions are finished in Hassium cloth, Ambiance in Osmium cloth and Lauréate in Rhodium cloth with 'Duster' lettering. An Emergency Spare Wheel now becomes a £150 option on all 4x2 versions and remains standard on 4x4 models.
The range structure is the same as before. Highlights on Access models are 16-inch Eiger steel wheels, remote locking, a Thatcham-approved engine immobiliser, electric front windows, anti-lock brakes with Emergency Brake Assist, Electronic Stability Control and Traction Control, a Tyre Pressure Monitor, four airbags, an ECO driving mode and gearshift indicator and a four-speed heating and ventilation system. Body-coloured bumpers, black door handles and Duster-branded roof bars and bumpers are all standard. Glacier White is the sole colour. The 4x4 version has a centre differential lock with 2WD, Auto and Lock modes.
Ambiance versions add Matterhorn 16-inch steel wheels, satin chrome door handles, a chrome gearlever insert and instrument surrounds, a radio/CD player with AUX and USB sockets and Bluetooth, front foglights, a height-adjustable driver's seat and a 60:40 split rear seat.
Topping the range are the Lauréate models with 16-inch Tyrol alloys, manual air conditioning, electric mirrors and rear windows, cruise control with a speed limiter, a seven-function trip computer, a glovebox light, a passenger vanity mirror and body coloured door handles, satin chrome Duster-branded roof bars, scuff plates and side sills. Also standard are piano black interior door handles, door and steering wheel inserts and centre console surround, a leather-covered steering wheel and map pockets in the front seat backs.
Dacia has been Europe's fastest-growing automotive brand for eight years in a row. The Duster is the most affordable SUV on the UK market – and has been since it came to the UK in mid-2012. Production of Right Hand Drive UK-bound Dusters was originally at the Chennai plant in India and, with the advent of New Duster, has moved closer to its British end customers to Dacia's home plant of Pitesti in Romania.
The model has claimed a stack of awards in the UK, Europe and India and has established an immensely loyal following, not least because of pricing and specification which is more in tune with that for a car from the class below.
The Duster is covered by Dacia's standard three-year/60,000 mile mechanical warranty plus two-year paint and six-year anti-corrosion guarantees.
For more information, please contact Westover Dacia in Poole or Salisbury.