The Dacia Sandero will be reinvented for its fourth generation as a rugged, raised supermini with pure-electric power – but it will stay true to the affordable billing that has made it one of Europe’s most popular cars.
Company CEO Denis Le Vot revealed the new Sandero will arrive in “2027 or 2028”, “live until 2034 or 2035” and serve as a flag-bearer for the marque’s low-cost route to a zero-emissions line-up.
Once the new Duster is launched in 2024, every Dacia (except the Spring) will be based on the Renault Group’s CMF-B platform, and its EVs will follow suit by moving onto the closely related CMF-BEV electric equivalent. This means the electric Sandero will effectively be Dacia’s take on the Renault 5, albeit with a more overt focus on utility and practicality – and company bosses have hinted it will build on the formula for the popular Sandero Stepway in adopting an element of ruggedness and off-road usability.
Le Vot explained that for it to remain one of the most affordable cars in its segment, it will need to go without the headline-baiting EV performance stats of upcoming rivals. “We will go for a shorter range and longer charge times” than electric rivals in the B-segment, he said, because “we want a cheaper price for the customer”.
He pointed to the increasing entry price of mainstream electric cars – “€35,000, €40,000, €45,000” – as an inhibitor to widespread uptake and laid bare Dacia’s commitment to providing a more accessible alternative.
Minimising weight will be key to keeping costs down and could even prompt Dacia to fit a smaller battery than that destined for the Sandero’s platform siblings. Le Vot said Dacia will not target a “500-600km [311-373-mile] range and 20-minute charging”.
He added that the firm is investigating ways to make the battery chemistry as cheap as possible too. “Maybe the battery will be sodium-based,” he said. “Some argue sodium batteries aren’t great because they don’t store a lot of energy and they are heavy. But they’re cheap.”