At first glance the robust styling appears to be a clever facelift, but everything you can see is fresh.
All-new Duster has familiar styling
While this third-generation Duster bears more than a passing resemblance to the outgoing model, the Romanian brand’s stylists have attempted to gussy it up somewhat.
It looks chunky and robust, with beefy haunches shown off with some vibrant new colours. Clearly Dacia doesn’t want to divert too far away from what’s been a successful – and capable – crossover at the budget end of the market.
Aluminium roof rails are teamed with silver-coloured skid plates on the front and rear bumpers, while the front features a more imposing grille flanked by headlamps with optional LED technology.
There’s greater distinction at the back of the latest Duster with tail lights positioned slightly in-board compared with its predecessor.
Roomier, better quality Duster interior
Lots of attention has been focused on increasing interior space. The windscreen is now further forwards and more upright, increasing the feeling of roominess.
Not only that, but the latest Duster features a completely overhauled dashboard to complement its brand new bodywork.
Dacia claims that material quality and equipment levels will also be lifted, but it’s yet to confirm whether these changes will result in a significant price increase for the newcomer.
The Duster will remain a five-seat SUV, with no option for a third row in the boot, meaning the not-for-Britain Dacia Lodgy is the brand’s sole seven-seater.
Expect contemporary safety technology to become available too – possibly as an option bundle – with autonomous emergency braking set to make its first appearance in a Dacia. Whether this will be enough to improve on the outgoing Duster’s three-star Euro NCAP crash test result remains to be seen.
Duster engines to be confirmed
More muscular wheelarches trimmed with black plastic cladding can accommodate 17-inch wheels, making it look especially tough. Expect Dacia to have ensured that models equipped with four-wheel drive remain capable off-road too.
There’s no word yet on which Renault-sourced engines will feature, but expect a similar line-up of compact, turbocharged TCe petrols and dCi diesels to today’s model, including the availability of the EDC dual-clutch automatic gearbox.
Hybrid or electric versions are unlikely.
Dacia hasn’t revealed prices for the new Duster yet, but the expected increase in material quality and on-board technology will inevitably result in a rise when the SUV arrives in showrooms in spring 2018.