2022 Dacia Duster Prestige TCe 100 Bi-Fuel
Amazingly, it’s three years since the second-generation Duster went on sale in the UK, and in that time, Dacia has not only updated its branding, but also the Sandero has set new standards in the value end of the supermini class.
The latest Duster therefore adopts similar Y-shaped LED lights to the Sandero, along with a bolder grille and reprofiled rear spoiler that helps to enhance efficiency. The capacity of the LPG tank has been expanded by 16.2 litres, bringing the total capacity to almost 50 litres. Inside, the cabin has come in for some attention, with a brand-new eight-inch touchscreen and a new centre console that is positioned higher up than before, with integrated, sliding armrest. The seat upholstery is new, as are the slimmer headrests.
We only got to sample the diesel engine on a short off-road course, but with no mechanical changes made to the car, the manners will remain the same as before. Particularly impressive is refinement, with low levels of engine noise, even when you pile on the revs. The main focus of the drive event was the 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine with 99bhp on offer in LPG mode.
That provides sufficient, if not exactly plentiful, performance off the line, with reasonable mid-range overtaking thrust. The six-speed manual gearbox is super smooth and light and is a good companion to the small capacity powerplant. It’s a quiet unit and doesn’t even get raucous if you’re making good use of the upper echelons of the rev range, while road, tyre and wind noise are all appreciably low. The steering is light enough, though there’s not an enormous amount of feel through the wheel. While there’s some body lean when cornering fast, the driving experience is safe and predictable, with decent grip. But what is impressive is the ride comfort, which soaks up even deep ruts and bumps exceptionally well.
The improvements to the interior are very much welcomed, with the design much more driver-focused than before. The centre armrest gives you somewhere to rest your elbow and the new eight-inch touchscreen is angled towards the driver, and even includes wireless Apple CarPlay on Prestige models. The design is well ordered and robust, even if all of the materials are of the hard variety. Storage is well catered for thanks to an area ahead of the gear lever, huge door pockets, an extra shelf in front of the passenger, and storage underneath the new armrest. There’s an air of spaciousness to the cabin, thanks to generous head and legroom both front and back, with even the lankiest of teenagers finding that there’s plenty of room in the back of a Duster. Deep windows mean that there’s good all round vision, and in any case, there’s parking sensors and a reversing camera on all versions except the basic Essential model. Boot space is generous, too, at 478 litres with the seats up, and this can be extended to 1,623 litres by folding the rear chairs down.
FACTS & FIGURES
- On sale Now
- In showrooms Now
- Prices £13,995 to £20,845
- Bodystyles 5-door SUV
- Engines 1.0 Petrol LPG manual (99bhp), 1.5 Diesel manual 2WD and 4WD (114bhp)
- Trim levels Essential, Comfort, Prestige
- Also consider Peugeot 2008, Vauxhall Crossland
- Model tested 2022 Dacia Duster Prestige TCe 100 Bi-Fuel
- Price £16,695
- Built in Mioveni, Romania
- Codename Duster II Platform B0
- Bodystyle 5-door SUV, 5-seats
- Layout Front-wheel-drive
- Powerplant 999cc, 3-cylinder, 12-valve, turbocharged petrol with LPG
- Transmission 6-speed manual
- Stop-start Yes
- Max power (Petrol) 90bhp @ 4,400-4,900rpm
- Max power (LPG) 99bhp @ 4,600-5,000rpm
- Max torque (Petrol) 118lb ft @ 2,200-3,750rpm
- Max torque (LPG) 125lb ft @ 2,000-3,500rpm
- Top speed (Petrol/LPG) 103/104mph
- 0-62mph (Petrol/LPG) 15.1/13.7secs
- CO2 emissions (Petrol/LPG) 145/127g/km
- Economy (WLTP combined) (Petrol/LPG) 40.4/44.1mpg
- Fuel tank size (Petrol/LPG)50/49.8 litres
- Range (Petrol) 444 miles
- Insurance group 11
- BIK rate (2020/2021 tax year) 29%
- Size (length/width with mirrors) 4,341/2,052mm
- Boot space (min/max) 478/1,623 litres
- Kerb/max towing weight 1256/1,500kg
- Euro NCAP crash rating (pre-facelift tested)
- Warranty 3 years/60,000 miles
- Wheels (Full-size/spacesaver/run-flats/selfsealing/repair kit)No/no/no/no/yes
- Verdict A nip and a tuck to keep the Duster competitive with rivals and up to the latest Dacia design cues bring a series of nice improvements to the value-led SUV.
- EcoCar rating 8/10