A right Dust up

Glossop Advertiser - - Motors -

ANY­ONE look­ing for a re­li­able se­cond­hand cross­over has a huge ar­ray of ve­hi­cles to choose from these days.

They all have their plus points – and few have any­thing against them – but none come cheaper than the Da­cia Duster.

There is noth­ing wrong with the way it drives, and it’s very fam­ily friendly and easy to live with.

It might seem a lit­tle util­i­tar­ian up against some oth­ers, but then all you have to do is com­pare prices and you im­me­di­ately re­al­ize that it’s a huge bar­gain.

It has been avail­able since 2014 with two petrol en­gines and a sin­gle diesel, each of which is avail­able with two or four wheel drive (4WD).

They’re all well-known units from par­ent com­pany Re­nault’s sta­ble and start with a 1.6 petrol which has 105 or later 115bhp.

Higher or­der cars come with the Re­nault 1.2 turbo boast­ing 125bhp, and this has slightly lower CO2 emis­sions.

The sin­gle diesel is the 1.5 turbo also used by Re­nault and Nis­san, and this has an out­put of 110bhp.

The 1.6 petrol re­turns 44mpg in 2WD form, and 41.5mpg in 4WD, while the 1.2 turbo man­ages 46.3 and 44.

The ex­cel­lent diesel – which has been the ma­jor­ity seller - is by far the clean­est and most eco­nom­i­cal en­gine in the range, with a best of 64.2mpg in the 2WD and 60mpg in the all wheel drive.

Emis­sions range from 115g/km to 123g/km and strangely, it’s the only unit avail­able with an auto box. The rest all have six speed man­ual trasn­mis­sions.

Per­for­mance is fair in all mod­els, and the 4x4 ver­sions all have a re­vised fi nal drive ra­tio, mak­ing fi rst a crawler gear for off-road work and us­ing the other five on the road.

The en­gines are rea­son­ably sub­dued in use and will­ing enough when pressed. But over­tak­ing on two lane roads is an ac­quired skill.

4WD mod­els have three set­tings – auto, 2WD and 4WD. Most peo­ple will prob­a­bly leave it in auto, be­cause that means drive is to the front wheels most of the time, only adding the rears when trac­tion is lost.

Com­fort is very good over all sur­faces and long travel sus­pen­sion means it takes speed humps bet­ter than most!

De­spite some roll, it also takes the cor­ners eas­ily and quickly, hold­ing the road strongly even on poor sur­faces.

I have en­joyed driv­ing dif­fer­ent mod­els and found they brought plenty of fun.

En­try Ac­cess mod­els have steel wheels, roof bars, elec­tric front win­dows, four airbags, emer­gency spare wheel, heigh­tad­justable steer­ing wheel and re­mote lock­ing.

Pay about £6,700 for a ’13 13-reg 1.5 dCi Am­biance 2WD, or £9,750 for a ’15 15-reg Lau­re­ate dCi 4WD. PETER HAY­WARD A COUN­TRY road in Scot­land has been named as the UK's most re­tire­ment-friendly.

The route, a 66-mile stretch from Lochgilp­head to the Glen Coe moun­tains, was voted by re­tired driv­ers as their favourite in a sur­vey con­ducted by in­sur­ance firm LV.

The sur­vey, which quizzed 1,085 mo­torists aged 65 about their con­fi­dence be­hind the wheel, re­vealed 74 per cent of driv­ers re­duced the amount of driv­ing they did af­ter re­tir­ing, with 22 per cent con­sid­er­ing them­selves a 'ner­vous' driver.

Re­spon­dents blamed over­crowded roads, health-re­lated con­cerns and wors­en­ing eye sight as rea­sons for los­ing con­fi­dence on the roads.

In a bid to help older driv­ers with their con­fi­dence, LV has nick­named the road from Lochgilp­head to the Glen Coe moun­tains 'Route 66', to give it a re­laxed vibe.

Sel­wyn Fer­nan­des, man­ag­ing director of car in­sur­ance at LV, said: "We're thrilled to name this beau­ti­ful sec­tion of road as the most re­tire­ment­friendly in the UK.

"Most driv­ers who have re­tired have decades of ex­pe­ri­ence be­hind the wheel, but as our re­search shows they in­creas­ingly start to feel less con­fi­dent on the road.

"By cre­at­ing a 'Route 66' in the UK, we're help­ing these driv­ers feel more con­fi­dent by pro­vid­ing a spe­cial stretch of road just for them."

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