Bar­gain Da­cia is no joke

Cynon Valley - - MOTORS WALES -

PEO­PLE joke about the cheap as chips Da­cia San­dero be­ing ba­sic ‘Post Of­fice’ spec and not even worth its very rea­son­able price.

Don’t you be­lieve it. It’s one of the bar­gain small cars on the mar­ket as far as I’m con­cerned with agility and com­fort in spades, de­cent econ­omy and a lot more than ad­e­quate per­for­mance.

I drove a petrol model pow­ered by par­ent com­pany Re­nault’s bril­liant lit­tle 900cc three cylin­der turbo and it’s mar­vel­lous.

It pulls re­mark­ably well from rea­son­ably low revs through the stan­dard fivespeed gear­box, the clutch is light and there’s good space for the left foot.

Through the gears, its quickly up to 70 and can hap­pily keep up at mo­tor­way speeds.

It is very will­ing, with hardly any turbo lag and it al­ways sounds sweet un­less taken be­low about 1,700 revs, when it some­times makes a thrum­ming noise if asked for ac­cel­er­a­tion.

Over­tak­ing is eas­ily pos­si­ble in third and fourth gears, and there’s even de­cent ac­cel­er­a­tion in fifth.

In nor­mal driv­ing

Iwould ex­pect econ­omy to be about 45 miles per gal­lon, which is more than fair.

Ride com­fort is very good, with lit­tle bump thump even over some very rough roads and while the seats are a bit ba­sic, they do of­fer some sup­port in the cor­ners.

The steer­ing is not as di­rect as some but the han­dling is none­the­less ex­cel­lent and, de­spite some roll, the road hold­ing is also very good.

Few cars are per­fect and when you con­sider that the Da­cia costs just £8,640 as I drove it, it has to be one of the best bar­gains on the mar­ket.

The new Da­cia San­dero

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