Today in New Delhi, Renault India launched its first mini SUV, the Duster, with the hope of striking a comeback in India. With muscular styling, a proven Renault platform (that it shares with the Verito), plenty of features, impressive fuel economy, a bouquet of variants, and backed by a quickly expanding dealer network, the Duster has ticked many right boxes.
For the list of features and the technical specifications – go here.
The overall quality, fit and finish of the plastics as well as the metal panels are impressive. Except for some bits like the back of the door handle and the glove box lid, nothing in here feels cheap or outdated.
The broad grill, reworked bumper and the double barrel headlamps up front distinguish it from the Dacia model. A high seating position and a flat bench that can accommodate three people fairly comfortably are going to win smiles from Indian families. Note that the Renault Duster is a five seater.
The Duster is aimed at bagging customers who are buying a premium hatchback (VW Polo, Hyundai i20 or a Skoda Fabia) or a sedan in the C-Segment segment (Verna, Rapid or Sunny).
Their marketing efforts will go into pulling in these two type of customers. The first commercial showing people, who have just bought a sedan, weeping uncontrollably, truly signifies the positioning of the Duster.
In India, the SUV is a more aspirational vehicle compared to a sedan. An SUV under 10 lakhs is usually fitted with two jump seats or a foldable bench behind the second row. The Duster is tangled between these two cases.
The Duster will be manufactured completely at the Renault-Nissan alliance manufacturing plant in Chennai. In due course of time, exports to the UK market will begin.
Deliveries to Indian customers begin from the 10th of July.
Below is the technical specifications in pdf format and high resolution images of the Duster from the Delhi launch floor. Wait for a detailed video showing the features of the car, coming later this afternoon.
Renault Duster Image Slideshow
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Renault Duster brochure
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