Renault Duster Review
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November 29, 2013: Renault Duster an incredible SUV from French car maker after enjoying huge success and grabbing the best car of the year followed by 29 more awards. Now has one more reason to enjoy the success by receiving recognition of outstanding SUV among different 15 SUV’s present in Indian car market.
Renault Duster Review by Expert
If it’s a Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) it has to be large and full sized... this perception in the minds of Indian car lovers is now transformed by French automaker’s new compact SUV Renault Duster. The awaited and globally acclaimed model that rules the roads of 6 countries was launched on 4th July 2012 in India. The major envy point for its competitors and pride aspect for consumers, apart from its exciting features, was its aggressive pricing that actually sent rivals to resentment and consumers to newer levels of delight.
The Renault Duster boasts all the capabilities of a true off-roader with its sturdy 4X2 mechanism under its hood. India has soft corner for the SUVs that definitely eases the way for French SUV, which is the most affordable one with the tempting price tag starting from just Rs 7.19 lakh (ex showroom Delhi). Overall, it’s a worrying factor for the Mahindra vehicles as well as an alarm for healthy competition with the impending Ford EcoSport compact SUV.
It has been designed on the familiar Logan platform but still looks very different, fresh and far more appealing. If you recall the image of Hyundai Tucson, then you can easily notice the designs similarities between these two SUVs. Its compact and well-organized chassis has quite robust feel. Though, the high ground clearance and added height won’t make it taller than the other SUV of the segment, but it would be bulky. The programmed-deflection flexible H-beam, high ground clearance, loose-surface ability and elevated driving position are the highlighted features of Renault Duster. On the other side, the rear multi-arm arrangement, pronounced & wide wheel arches, chrome grille and skid-plate are some amazing characteristics of this all new sensation. The rugged front with wheel arches and painted front grille gives it a perfect SUV appearance and from sides it looks simple & plain.
The interiors are truly spacious with some perfect fittings at front row be it spanking dashboard, striking central console or the clear instrument panel everything is placed just right. The seats inside are of premium material with option of leather available in the top model along with adjustable driver’s seat with lumbar support. There are numerous handy aspects that make the passengers feel stress free on the move. Moreover the advanced entertainment system equipped with latest gadgets makes longer journeys look smaller. The safety aspect is taken care appropriately with sufficient safety gears ready for the protection of the occupants.
Renault Duster Rivals
On the exterior piece, Renault Duster with its bold designing has an edge above Maruti Ertiga and Rio’s uncomplicated and precise styling. Feature-wise in the inside, French SUV and Maruti MPV are better than Rio’s basic characteristics. Out of the three, in feature category and neat interior designing Ertiga is marginally ahead, but being a mass segment compact SUV, Duster interiors are too acceptable. Now the most important section i.e. under hood specs, all the three are nearly powered petrol engines with nearby capacity of 1.2L-1.3L, while diesel powertrain capacity revolves around 1.5L motor. Among the trio on overall performance Renault Duster provides tough times to Maruti Ertiga, while Rio seems minnow. On the mileage part too, both are fabulous, while the option of 85 PS and 110 PS plays a perfect distinct amid the three.
|Renault Duster Rivals Table|
|Model||Engine||Mileage (City/Highway)||Acceleration (0-100 kph)||Unique features||Price (Ex-Showroom, Delhi)|
|Renault Duster Petrol||1599 cc||10.5kmpl/ 13.24kmpl||11.5 seconds||proper SUV looks, performance, compact||Rs 7.19-8.19 Lakh|
|Renault Duster Diesel (85 PS)||1499 cc||16.5kmpl/ 20.46kmpl||17 seconds||Rs 7.99-10.99 Lakh|
|Renault Duster Diesel (110PS)||1461cc||15kmpl/ 19.01kmpl||15 seconds||Rs. 11.29 Lakh|
|Premier Rio Petrol||1173 cc||12 kmpl/ 16 kmpl||17 seconds||in-expensive, first in segment, acceptable looks||Rs 5.36 Lakh|
|Premier Rio Diesel||1489 cc||14 kmpl/ 19 kmpl||19 seconds||Rs 5.87 Lakh|
|Maruti Ertiga Petrol||1372 cc||13.5 kmpl/ 16.2 kmpl||13 seconds||value for money, features, Maruti assurance||Rs 7.29 Lakh|
|Maruti Ertiga Diesel||1248 cc||17.5 kmpl/ 20.77 kmpl||15 seconds||Rs 8.44 Lakh|
Renault Duster Mileage and Fuel Efficiency
The lower and responsive displacement petrol and diesel engines of Renault Duster are well capable to provide its owners with a beyond satisfactory mileage figures. The 1.5L diesel version that is available in two trims generates two different outputs of 85 PS and 110 PS. The 85 PS one delivers a mileage of 20.46 kmpl on the highways and nearly 16.5 kmpl in city conditions, while a max 19.01 kmpl is extracted from the larger 110 PS on open roads together with 15 kmpl in the traffic ridden situations of the city. The expected lone Renault Duster petrol power train of 1.6L, 4-cylinder engine showcases some reasonable performance in the fuel economy department. This petrol engine that smokes out 104 PS of output at 5850 rpm is committed enough to provide with a decent mileage of nearly 10.5 kmpl on the city roads while 13.24 kmpl on the smooth highways. Compact SUV Renault Duster is able to deliver these estimated fuel economy, which is applauding in every sense and brings joy to its consumers.
|Model||Mileage (City)||Mileage (Highway)|
|Renault Duster 1.6L Petrol||10.5 kmpl||13.24 kmpl|
|Renault Duster 1.5L Diesel (85PS)||16.5 kmpl||20.46 kmpl|
|Renault Duster 1.5L Diesel (110PS)||15 kmpl||19.01 kmpl|
Renault Duster Models and Features
|Renault Duster Variatns||Renault Duster Features|
|Renault Duster Petrol RXE||The base petrol version is offered with features like black radiator front grille, stylish steel wheels and door side sills. The interiors have charcoal grey finish on floor console, chrome finished gear knob, keyless entry, and advanced HVAC system along with power windows.|
|Renault Duster Petrol RXL||The top model has aspects like classic black fabric upholstery, glossy metallic grey inserts on center fascia, tilt steering column and foldable rear backrest alongside 12V charging point at front for convenience. The other features are same as found in the base trim.|
|Renault Duster Diesel (85PS) RXE||The base version is packed with trendy beige seat fabric, piano black center front and inside door handles with metallic champagne silver finish. Some convenient features include electrically powered ORVMs, adjustable rear seat head rests and entertainment system|
|Renault Duster Diesel (85PS) RXL||The second trim in diesel lineup is presented with elements such as door trim fabric insert, steering mounted audio and phone controls together with headlight alarm with display. Furthermore the other features are similar to that of earlier trim.|
|Renault Duster Diesel (85PS) Safety RXL||This optional safety pack comes with the high end model and optimum safety functions such as dual airbags, ABS with EBD and Brake Assist alongside many other advanced security mechanisms. Moreover, there is engine immobilizer, door open warning lamp and central locking. The other elements are identical to the top model of diesel variant.|
|Renault Duster Diesel (110PS) RXL||The base mode of this diesel trim carries alike features that are a part of 85PS model. But to name some it can be rear wiper with washer, rear seat centre seat arm rest with handy feature of cup holders and on board trip computer.|
|Renault Duster Diesel (110PS) RXZ||The elements offered in this top end diesel model are maximum chrome inserts at grille, backdoor embellisher, outside door handles and stylish roof rails. The interior has premium beige 3D embossed fabrics on seats, leather-n-chrome gear knob, reverse parking sensors and driver seat adjuster with lumbar support accompanied by integrated 2DIN audio player with USB, Bluetooth and aux-in support. Moreover, there are numerous safety features offered with this version.|
|Renault Duster Diesel (110PS) RXZ Optional||This top model of diesel is presented with leather pack as option. This actually makes the vehicle look premium as well as luxurious from inside as there are best quality leather seats to feel fresh even on the longer journeys, leather wrapped steering wheel for better grip along with leather covered gear knob and leather inserts on the dashboard.|
Renault Duster Colors
The colors of Renault Duster SUV are sure to drive your attention because they go very well with the daunting image of the vehicle. If you see them carefully you will find that majority of the Renault Duster colors are in metallic shade. This actually reflects the seriousness of this product for the French carmaker that it has genuinely left no stone unturned in getting Renault Duster an upright and solid outer surface. There are in all 6 colors to select from and that comprise of Metallic Woodland Brown, Pearl Galaxy Black, Metallic Graphite Grey, Pearl Supreme White and Metallic Moonlight Silver alongside Metallic Fiery Red. Here the distinctive Metallic Woodland Brown shade looks the best in the whole lot.
|Fiery Red||Pearl Supreme White||Woodland Brown||Graphite Grey||Moonlight Silver||Pearl Galaxy Black|
Click Here to see more Renault Duster Pictures
Renault Duster Engine, Power and Performance
Renault Duster compact SUV stuns the onlookers with its incredible performance and daunting presence. The Renault Duster engines offer a variety to choose, from solo peppy petrol engine to efficient frugal diesel power train in two different power outputs. The 1.6L petrol motor churns out 104 PS at of maximum power at 5850 rpm, the trusted engine is been tweaked to provide with 145 Nm of torque at 3750 rpm. This performance is been made possible by the Multi-point fuel injection system. The 1598cc petrol engine is mated to 5-speed manual gearbox.
On the other side, Renault Duster diesel engine will be accessible in two different tunes with its same 1.5L power train with CRDi technology. The first trim will outpour maximum power of 85 PS at 3750 rpm and peak torque of 200 Nm at 1900 rpm. This diesel motor will be coupled to a 5-speed manual transmission. The subsequent trim produces greater 110 PS at 3900 rpm besides bigger torque of 248 Nm at 2250 rpm. This 1461cc engine is mated to an advanced 6-speed manual transmission.
Renault Duster Pick Up and Acceleration
|Engine Variant||Power(PS / RPM)||Torque(NM / RPM)||Pickup (0-100 in secs)||Top Speed(Km/ h)||Transmission|
|Petrol 1.6L||104/ 5850||145/ 3750||11.5 seconds||160||5-Speed Manual|
|Diesel 1.5L||85/ 3750||200/ 1900||13.9 seconds||156||5-Speed Manual|
|Diesel 1.5L||110/3900||248/2250||12.5 seconds||168||6-Speed Manual|
The acceleration and pick up of Renault Duster is better than the expected with engine displacements of 1461cc diesel and 1598cc petrol. Let’s first take the diesel variant that is available in two different power outputs of 85 PS & 110 PS. It takes around 13.9 seconds for Renault Duster to reach 100 kph from zero with 85 PS, while the subsequent gets the said mark of 0-100 kph in merely 12.5 seconds as it has got high amount of power and better pick up. While the top speed also shares the difference with 156 kmph and 168 kmph for the 85 PS and 110 PS power trims respectively. Here the high powered version is mated to an advanced 6-speed manual gearbox, while the lower powered is presented with usual 5-speed manual transmission.
Furthermore, the 1.6L petrol engine that is coupled with a 5-speed manual transmission will have the capability to touch the 0-100 kmph figure in 11.5 seconds with its peppier motor that is better when compared to both power outputs of diesel version along with the top speed of 160 kmph.
Renault Duster Interiors and Features
The interiors of Renault Duster are practical and has got long list of feature incorporated in it as per the liking and needs of today’s modern Indian consumer. Though, the European Dacia Duster interiors had much of the similarity to the Logan’s or Sandero’s interior, but here, the cabin is tweaked for good as required in the sub continent conditions. The interior are properly comfortable though not as premium as big brother Renault Koleos’s, but definitely inspiring. The front seats of Renault Duster are nice and wide. The higher driver position allows a better all around view to the driver and co passenger. The back seat welcomes you with higher wheelbase and roominess.
Here, Renault Duster’s cabin can carry five average size individuals to a distance with appropriate ease. The compartment has enough leg room, head room and shoulder room for the passengers. The front row has sleek looking glossy piano black dashboard with proper size glove box, the brilliant center console is equipped with modern 2-DIN audio player that plays CD, MP3, AM/FM alongside there is USB, Aux-in and Bluetooth support that makes it appear first rate. Moreover, to ensure surround sound in the Renault Duster there are 4-speakers at service for the occupants. The instrument cluster has got clearer vision of the speedometer and other related displays. The fabric used inside Renault Duster is of premium beige 3D embossed that makes you feel cozy even on the long routes, while leather pack is also offered as option for luxurious experience. The steering and gear knob are offered with leather wrapping, while steering also has mounted audio and phone controls for apt convenience while driving. The driver’s seat in Renault Duster is provided with lumbar support and comes with height adjustable feature. To increase the cargo space at rear the second row back-rest can be folded. Some convenient features include 12V charging point at front and rear for laptops and mobile phones on the move, reverse parking sensors for hassle free parking, key les entry, power window switches with illumination, rear AC with independent blower control and cup-holder at rear armrest together with many more. On the whole, the Renault Duster interiors guarantee genuine comfort with ideal arrangement of sophisticated features.
Renault Duster Exteriors and Features
The length of Renault Duster is 4.3 meters, however, it appears much bigger than that, say more than 5 meters. The French SUV’s appearance has got a perfect mix up of brawny and sporty attitude; and the same, it swanks on and off the road. The bulkiness of a beast and performance of a perfect SUV comes in an imposingly compact package, well that is called Renault Duster. The exteriors of this French SUV are sure to lure the sports utility vehicle enthusiasts of the country, especially the young buyers that look for compactness in urban environment.
The front has got stylish grille that has broad chrome slats with Renault badge resting between it, alongside it carries clear twin barrel headlamps and clear fog lamps for better view in abnormal weather conditions. The stylishly carved-out double toned bumpers makes Renault Duster appear imposing on the streets. The most distinct element is the air-dam that is positioned within a contemporary skid plate bestowing the completeness of the robust and compact SUV. The Renault Duster exterior sides have flared wheel arches and chrome-satin (twin-shaded) ORVMs together with body colored door handles and splendid-n-solid looking roof rails at the top, which formulates it as ‘raring-to-go’.
The ground clearance is fabulous like the Scorpios and Safaris. The rear wheel fending showcases some Mahindra XUV 500-like stance, while the rear portion is packed well with the insertion of full size tail gate and proper rear glass. The tail lamps are brilliantly engraved and blend well with the solid emerging rear. The purposeful bumper of Renault Duster come with black plastic surrounding with aluminum skid plate provide an upright stance along with solid looking 16-inch sporty alloys wheels. Furthermore, the rear gets completed with the first-class chrome exhaust that bestows a premium look to the rear. This design and its stalwart street presence will undoubtedly appeal the large number of consumers in India to go for Renault Duster.
Safety Features in Renault Duster
Being a global carmaker, Renault has left no stone unturned in assuring the safety for the occupants inside Renault Duster. As it has got all dependable active & passive safety features. The compact SUV has got dual SRS airbags in the front for driver and co-driver. While the passive aspects in Renault Duster include Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) for better control of the vehicle under wet and slippery conditions and it becomes more apt with the inclusion of Brake Assist (BA) function.
Renault Duster Driving and Handling
The Renault Duster SUV handles well in the traffic conditions and at speeds on open roads. The 1.5L Diesel engine offered in 85PS and 110PS power tunes acts simply amazing when it comes to performance on and off the road. The steering wheel plays safe with being light, and effortless to maneuver in the city traffic. The nimble yet firm suspension makes the occupants feel comfortable even in the bumpy conditions. With light kerb weight of 1308kg, the Renault Duster driving and handling comes ‘more’ up to the mark as one experiences a sort of sedan or large hatchback behind the wheels.
The transmission especially the 6-speed gearbox that is mated to 110PS is smooth, and has no vibrations when it comes to upward shift of gears, which is something extraordinary in this compact SUV Renault Duster. Moreover, the 5-speed manual transmission also goes along very well with the 85bhp one, whereas the 6-speed manual gearbox is just fantastic. Overall, both the manual transmissions present are as refined as the engine. Nevertheless, the presence of advanced and controlled braking mechanism comes handy in the form of ABS, EBD and Brake Assist.
Renault Duster Accessories
This sensational Renault Duster can be upgraded with plenty of accessories including vibrant shaded seat covers and leather wrapped steering wheel covers that are offered in energetic colors. For the floor there are rubber mats available in black and transparent as per your choice. Moreover stylish alloy wheels are also at hand to make you Renault Duster look distinct. There are modern graphics that are enough to make your car look unique in the whole lot. Some other accessories comprise of front and rear mud flaps to absorb any wet muddy splash on the outer surface of your Duster. Furthermore, the ORVMs with turn indicators can also be fitted for best visual appeal from side along with adding upon to the safety aspect. The pleasing Renault Duster accessories will certainly catch the eyes of spectators.
Renault Duster Road Test Report
It’s Duster, Duster everywhere. So let’s drive one and feel the meaty punch. The amazingly compact dimensions of Renault Duster can magnetize any onlooker, while inside its all more than the expected. The vehicle is available with two different power tunes of 1.5L diesel engine i.e. 85PS and 110PS while the 1.6L petrol version comes solo with around 104PS of max power.
We started up in scorching heat from Chennai and headed towards Tirupati to get the real test done in this 150kms run. We were provided with top end Renault Duster diesel version (110PS), this engine has got 6-speed manual transmission. This is the power-train that the SUV enthusiasts should look up to, as 1.5L K9K motor has got hunky power numbers of nearly 109.5 PS along with real good torque figures of about 240 Nm. As soon as you start up, you tend to feel a bit turbo lag that disappears after you achieve anything above 2000rpm. But after this, the ride is just unbelievably fantastic as the real dCi of Renault Duster comes into picture.
The noise of this refined diesel power-train is rarely heard inside the cabin, if at times it does, don’t expect the horrible one like Tata Sumo Gold. When the Renault Duster is on and you are out of it, the noise actually turns into pride, because it’s a diesel engine and you are ought to hear refinement. The 6-speed gearbox is a smoothie and effortless, it won’t let you know that you are cruising above 100 kmph speed. On the way there were numerous occasions we went on to drive on bumpy conditions but the uneven were absorbed well with ease, courtesy aptly aligned suspensions of Renault Duster. Here we didn’t test the uphill task of Duster, but we feel that is it will certainly perform better in that task too. The braking by assistance of ABS and EBD leaves a decent impression on the mind.
Renault Duster is carved out of a monocoque construction, same as Mahindra XUV 500, and this can be sensed while driving as body rolls is pretty less and it’s somewhat like that of the sedans, which help in cutting quick corners. Overall, in terms of ride quality and handling Renault has got a winner, whereas the remarkable price tag also secures attention. Prior to the test drive, we were expecting a 4x4 model, but as of now the company has no plans to present the all-wheel-drive version of Renault Duster.
Renault Duster Conclusion
Renault Duster FAQs
Answer: There are in all 6 Renault Duster diesel variants present in India. The diesel motorized engine comes with two different power outputs of 85PS and 110PS. There are three 85PS models namely RXE, RXL and RXL Option Pack, while the remaining 110PS trim comprise of RXL, RXZ and RXZ Option Pack.
Q2: What is the mileage of Renault Duster diesel?
Answer: The Renault Duster diesel mileage is very impressive with a practical city mileage that revolves around 13-15 kmpl in city conditions, whilst on highways it returns anything around 16-18 kmpl. However you can extract even more depending upon you driving style as the ARAI certified mileage is of 20.46 kmpl in standard testing conditions.
Q3: Is Renault Duster available with Automatic Transmission variant?
Answer: As of now the Renault Duster AT is not introduced in India, nonetheless there are expectations that by early next year it will hit the showrooms.
Q4: What is the waiting period for Renault Duster compact SUV?
Answer: The compact SUV Renault Duster is climbing up the sales numbers by leaps and bounds. As a result there is an overall waiting period of about 3-4 months, while it can exceed on some specific variant or color you choose.
Q5: What is the price of Renault Duster base model?
Answer: The base model Renault Duster price is of Rs 7.49 lakh for the petrol variant. And the diesel base model Renault Duster (85PS) is tagged at Rs 8.39 lakh. Both the prices are of ex showroom Delhi.
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