"Who said compact crossover SUVs are just for the city roads?", asks Renault Duster, as it prepares itself to participate in the most grueling rally on the planet.
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Renault Argentina will field two race prepped Dusters in the 2013 Dakar Rally that starts on January 5 and ends on March 30. If the cars manage to complete the race distance, it would shoot Duster's already high popularity level to even greater heights.
The Dakar Dusters will be piloted by an all Argentine team - Emiliano Spataro will be navigated by Benjamin Lozada, and Francisco José García will be navigated by Javier Mauricio Malano. The cars will have beefed up hardware to endure the 8,000 km+ rally that flags off at Lima, Peru and terminates at Santiago, Chile.
The Berta V6 engine that goes into the race spec Duster spits out 306 bhp and 442 Nm and is coupled to a purpose built SADEF 6 speed sequential transmission with self locking differential. The ventilated disc brakes get 6 piston calipers up front and 4 piston units at the rear.
The front suspension adopts double wishbone configuration and is made up of nickel molybdenum alloy steel and uses Baratec developed shocks. The rear employs a 4 link setup.
It is time for the Renault Duster to justify its name then!