Cheap and cheer­ful

Warwickshire Telegraph - - FRONT PAGE - By Peter Keenan

TEST DRIVE DACIA LO­GAN DCV

ANT a new car that’s mod­ern and spa­cious for a bar­gain base­ment price-tag? Then look no fur­ther than the Dacia Lo­gan MCV

The most af­ford­able es­tate on sale in the UK ac­tu­ally be­lies its cheap as chips sta­tus thanks to the back­ing of owner Re­nault, whose back cat­a­logue of in­te­rior fix­tures and fit­tings en­sure this Dacia is more than ac­cept­able for the £7,295 needed to buy the en­trylevel Ac­cess model.

And in­deed with im­pres­sive boot ca­pac­ity and a cabin that can eas­ily swal­low five adults the Lo­gan of­fers a lot of prac­ti­cal­ity and ver­sa­til­ity for fam­ily mo­tor­ing.

There is a huge amount of lug­gage space with 573 litres avail­able with the rear seats in place. When the 60/40 split rear seat­backs are low­ered this ex­pands to a cave-like 1,518 litres.

This is no sur­prise when you know the let­ters tagged on to the end of the Lo­gan name – MCV – stand for Max­i­mum Ca­pac­ity Ve­hi­cle.

There are lots of stor­age com­part­ments and cup hold­ers as well as a mo­bile phone pocket on the side of the front pas­sen­ger seat. An il­lu­mi­nated glove box is handy while those in the rear get a bot­tle holder, rear door bins and seat­back pock­ets to squir­rel away the odds and sods that ac­cu­mu­late over time. The Lo­gan is a re­fined beast with ex­te­rior noise by and large ban­ished from a cabin that is well put to­gether de­spite in­evitably con­tain­ing some cheaper plas­tics.

Yes the mid-range Am­bi­ence model’s in­te­rior is a tad plain but the lay­out of the Re­nault-sourced switches and di­als is log­i­cal and for £8,695 it of­fers a mod­ern look.

There is also a rea­son­able amount of kit with re­mote cen­tral lock­ing, air con, dig­i­tal ra­dio, Blue­tooth con­nec­tiv­ity, and elec­tric front win­dows in­cluded. Satin chrome used to frame the cen­tral con­sole and in­stru­ment di­als is a nice touch.

And, fol­low­ing a re­cent re­vamp, the ex­te­rior is de­cent to look at as well with a nod to SUV de­sign clear in the raised ride height, chrome-fin­ish front grille, day­time run­ning lights, eye­catch­ing black whee­larches and un­der­body pro­tec­tion.

There are also natty fog lamps and satin roof bars in a pack­age that looks ready to take a fam­ily on a hik­ing hol­i­day.

Three en­gine choices are of­fered with power here pro­vided by a 1.0litre petrol en­gine, sourced from Re­nault, that of­fers de­cent fuel econ­omy, thanks to stop/start tech­nol­ogy, and is not as slow as a pedes­trian 0-62mph time of al­most 15 sec­onds would sug­gest.

That said the Lo­gan is a com­fort­able rather than thrilling drive with a sus­pen­sion set up to ab­sorb the many humps and hol­lows lit­ter­ing our roads – al­though larger ob­sta­cles do make their pres­ence felt in the cabin.

Safety is catered for by a raft of clever elec­tron­ics to help keep you on the road as well as front and side driver and pas­sen­ger airbags in case an ac­ci­dent can’t be averted. There is also a tyre pres­sure warn­ing light and hill start as­sist. A three-year, 60,000 mile war­ranty gives mo­tor­ing peace of mind.

Re­launched by par­ent com­pany Re­nault in 2004, Dacia has sold more than 100,000 cars in the UK since it launched here in 2013.

The Ro­ma­nian com­pany is hop­ing the lat­est Lo­gan makes a big im­pact, pro­vid­ing the next in­stal­ment in its Bri­tish suc­cess story. Model: Dacia Lo­gan MCV Am­biance SCe 75 Price: £8,695 Me­chan­i­cal: 73bhp, 1,000cc, 3cyl petrol en­gine driv­ing front wheels via 5-speed man­ual gear­box Max speed: 98mph 0-62mph: 14.7 sec­onds Com­bined mpg: 52.3 In­sur­ance group: 2 CO2 emis­sions: 120g/km BiK rat­ing: 23% War­ranty: 3yrs / 60,000 miles

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