Sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion Duster gets rugged look and smarter cabin

NEW MODEL

Business Day - Motor News - - MOTOR NEWS - Mo­tor News Re­porter

Re­nault’s well-priced Duster has served as a pop­u­lar SUV for those on a bud­get, sell­ing more than 2mil­lion units since its launch seven years ago.

The sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion ver­sion, which had its global re­veal at the Frankfurt mo­tor show last Septem­ber, was shown here in the me­tal for the first time at the week­end’s Fes­ti­val of Mo­tor­ing at Kyalami be­fore its lo­cal sales de­but on Oc­to­ber 1.

Re­nault says the new Duster re­mains at its core a tough, sim­ple and re­li­able, yet ac­ces­si­ble, SUV based on a value propo­si­tion, but boasts all-new ex­te­rior styling with a dis­tinctly as­sertive and ro­bust look.

The rugged stance is em­pha­sised by its bold, more hor­i­zon­tal lines, new 17-inch wheels, more prom­i­nent alu­minium roof bars and front and rear skid plates. Although it ap­pears vis­ually more mus­cu­lar, the fiveseater SUV has the same com­pact di­men­sions as be­fore.

The French-Ro­ma­nian ve­hi­cle (which wears a Da­cia badge in Ro­ma­nia) now has greater of­froad ca­pa­bil­i­ties, thanks to an en­hanced ground clear­ance of 210mm, higher ap­proach and depar­ture an­gles, and the in­tro­duc­tion of hill de­scent control in the 4x4 model.

Pre­vi­ously crit­i­cised for its pla­s­ticky in­te­rior, the new­comer has an up­graded cabin with an im­prove­ment to per­ceived qual­ity and user-friend­li­ness. The dash­board has been re­designed with en­hanced er­gonomics. Trav­el­ling com­fort for driver and pas­sen­gers is up­graded with more com­fort­able seats, ac­ces­si­ble stowage spa­ces, im­proved ac­ces­si­bil­ity of con­trols and an en­hanced mul­ti­me­dia ex­pe­ri­ence.

Equip­ment lev­els have been tweaked with fea­tures such as a mul­ti­view cam­era, blind-spot warn­ing, au­to­matic cli­mate control, hill de­scent control and key­less en­try.

As be­fore, petrol and diesel en­gines will be of­fered in man­ual, au­to­matic and 4x4 guises, but Re­nault SA isn’t re­veal­ing which of the avail­able en­gines

AS BE­FORE, PETROL AND DIESEL EN­GINES WILL BE OF­FERED IN MAN­UAL, AU­TO­MATIC AND 4X4 GUISES

will be sold lo­cally.

It’s likely the nor­mally-as­pi­rated 1.6l petrol with slightly en­hanced out­puts of 84kW and 156Nm will re­main, but it’s not known whether the 93kW/ 205Nm 1.2 turbo petrol will make it to our shores.

Overseas there is also a choice of two 1.5l turbo diesels in two out­put grades: 67kW/ 220Nm and 82kW/260Nm.

Full de­tails will be re­vealed when the Duster goes on sale in SA in Oc­to­ber.

The Re­nault Duster of­fers of­froad abil­ity due to hill de­scent control and higher ground clear­ance.

Pre­vi­ously pla­s­ticky in­te­rior has im­proved qual­ity.

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