Although sharing its name with a 1970s Plymouth muscle car, the Dacia Duster is a distinct entity, particularly as a compact SUV under the Romanian Renault subsidiary. Since its European debut in 2010, the Duster has garnered immense success, with 2.2 million units on the road, celebrated for its affordability and off-road capabilities. The 2024 Duster, aiming to uphold this reputation, introduces a fresh design with a touch of style, sadly excluding the American market.
Redefining Exterior Aesthetics
1. Chiseled and Assertive Design
The outgoing Duster, while functional, lacked distinction. The 2024 model undergoes a design overhaul, embracing a chiseled and assertive aesthetic. Notable features include bold Y-shaped graphics in the headlights and taillights, front and rear skid plates, and beefy wheel arches. The Extreme trim even incorporates copper accents for added style.
2. Eco-Friendly Innovations
Dacia introduces eco-friendly elements in the exterior design. Described as a protective “belt,” the black trim shields the vehicle and is crafted from a new material called Starkle, featuring up to 20 percent reused polypropylene. This material, left unpainted, reduces the carbon footprint, and around 20 percent of the plastic used in the Duster is recycled. The absence of decorative chrome and real leather aligns with Dacia’s commitment to sustainability.
Interior Harmony of Affordability and Modernity
1. Down-to-Earth Yet Modern Cabin
The interior seamlessly blends Dacia’s down-to-earth, low-cost ethos with modern elements. Straight lines and sharp angles contribute to visual robustness, while the Extreme trim boasts washable fabric upholstery and rubber floor mats, with 20 percent derived from recycled materials.
2. Technological Advancements
Technological upgrades include air vents borrowing the Y-shaped motif from the headlights and a driver-centric 10.1-inch central touchscreen complemented by a 7.0-inch digital gauge cluster. These features ensure a modern and comfortable interior, defying the stereotype of a conventional econobox.
Diverse Powertrains for Every Preference
1. Hybrid 140 Powertrain
Dacia offers an array of powertrains, catering to diverse preferences. The Hybrid 140 combines a 94-hp 1.6-liter four-cylinder with electric motors, allowing for significant electric-only driving. Paired with a four-speed automatic gearbox, this powertrain showcases efficiency and eco-friendliness.
2. TCe 130 and ECO-G 100 Options
The TCe 130 integrates a turbocharged 1.2-liter three-cylinder with a 48-volt electric motor, enhancing fuel efficiency. The Duster also features the ECO-G 100, a turbo 1.0-liter three-cylinder with dual fuel tanks for gasoline and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). Dacia emphasizes the environmental benefits of LPG, releasing 10 percent less carbon dioxide than gasoline.
Off-Road Prowess and Adventure Accessories
1. Terrain Control for Off-Road Enthusiasts
For those venturing off the pavement, the 4×4 models boast a terrain-control function with five modes, including Snow, Mud/Sand, and Eco. This system optimally redistributes torque to provide necessary grip while limiting fuel consumption. The Duster’s off-road capabilities include 8.5 inches of ground clearance, a 31-degree approach angle, and a 36-degree departure angle, complemented by hill-descent control.
2. Outdoor Accessories for Adventurers
Dacia enhances the Duster’s outdoor appeal with accessories like a roof rack capable of holding up to 176 pounds. The Sleep Pack, a removable box transforming into a fold-out bed, showcases the Duster’s versatility, catering to those seeking outdoor adventures.
European Excellence and Unfortunate Exclusion
The 2024 Dacia Duster stands as a European marvel, combining affordability, style, and eco-friendly initiatives. While its fresh design, diverse powertrains, and off-road capabilities make it an enticing option, the unfortunate exclusion from the American market leaves U.S. consumers yearning for this budget-friendly, stylish, and sustainable compact SUV.