Like its even cheaper Sandero sister, the Duster sits on the Renault-Nissan B0 platform which, for the avoidance of doubt is B Zero, not a personal hygiene issue. Relative to the Yeti to which it would so love to be compared, it’s a little longer, wider and sits on a larger wheelbase so whatever you’re losing, it’s not metal for the money.
The 2017 update has seen the Duster get a more distinctive exterior, with the new front grille dominating alongside an upgraded headlight system and bumpers. Inside the interior has been improved both in terms of quality and ergonomically, to allow it to retain its position as a compelling choice for those looking for a cheap, rugged small SUV.
The platform mandates the use of traverse engines, in this case a 1.2-, 1.6-litre petrol or a 1.5-litre turbodiesel. The entry-level 1.2-litre petrol engine has 123bhp while the bigger capacity 1.6-litre petrol produces a miserly 112bhp and the diesel produces 107bhp. For the first time, the Duster will also recieve Renault's EDC dual clutch automatic gearbox, a decision driven, Kugler says, by the increase in sales of automatics - especially the dual clutch vareity and the limited effect it has on emissions.
Should you choose a 4x4 version, the all-wheel drive system comes courtesy of Nissan and provides three modes: front drive, permanent four-wheel drive or ‘automatic’ that that switch between the two according to need.