Dacia Duster - best 4x4s and SUVs

The Dacia Duster might be cheap, but it's very cheerful and offers 4WD ability for a bargain price

Dacia Duster 4x4 2013

If you want to brave the cold on a tight budget, look no further than the Dacia Duster. With its bargain-basement price and low running costs, the rugged Romanian model has created a real stir since arriving in the UK at the start of the year.

Dacia Duster review

Yet don’t make the mistake of thinking that the value manufacturer has scrimped on the Duster’s SUV credentials. Under the no-nonsense exterior styling is a Nissan-developed, selectable four-wheel-drive system. For most driving conditions you can leave it in efficient front-wheel-drive mode. Yet when the weather turns you can engage a total traction set-up with a simple flick of the chunky, dashboard-mounted rotary switch. Finally, there’s a locking centre differential for when the going gets really tough.

Direct steering and a soft ride ensure the Duster is relaxing to drive on tarmac, while the 108bhp 1.5-litre dCi diesel is a surprisingly punchy performer – although it’s a little gruff, particularly when extended.

And even if the interior is full of hard plastics, it’s robustly built and very roomy. Access and Ambience versions are sparsely equipped, but the Laureate gets all the essentials, including air-conditioning, electric windows, Bluetooth and a USB connection. Better still, even in this range-topping trim the Duster only costs just over £15,000. It’s enough to give you a warm glow inside.

Best SUVs and 4x4s 2017

  1. 1. Jaguar F-Pace
  2. 2. Volvo XC90
  3. 3. Kia Sorento
  4. 4. Land Rover Discovery Sport
  5. 5. Mercedes GLC
  6. 6. Audi Q7
  7. 7. Dacia Duster
  8. 8. Porsche Macan
  9. 9. Hyundai Santa Fe
  10. 10. Range Rover Sport

Most Popular

'If you invest in a Jaguar now, it’s going to look very out of date very quickly'
Electric Jaguar
Opinion

'If you invest in a Jaguar now, it’s going to look very out of date very quickly'

Jaguar's all-electric announcement has editor-in-chief Steve Fowler wondering what future cars will look like from the British brand
24 Feb 2021
New Dacia Sandero Stepway Bi-Fuel 2021 review
Dacia Sandero Stepway - front
Dacia Sandero Stepway

New Dacia Sandero Stepway Bi-Fuel 2021 review

At just under £11k, the new Dacia Sandero Stepway is one of the best value-for-money cars on the market
24 Feb 2021
New all-electric Hyundai Ioniq 5 arrives to take on Tesla
Ioniq 5 - front
Hyundai

New all-electric Hyundai Ioniq 5 arrives to take on Tesla

The new Ioniq 5 – the first model from Hyundai’s all-electric sub-brand – takes design influence from the 45 Concept and will be offered with two batt…
23 Feb 2021