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Parkers overall rating: 4.7 out of 5 4.7

Which Dacia Duster SUV is best for me?

  • Petrol makes most sense due to low prices
  • Mid-spec models provide the greatest value
  • Diesels carry very steep price premium

The Duster is the UK’s cheapest SUV and as long as you avoid Access trim is surprisingly well equipped. As a result, there’s no need to pay a big premium for a few more trinkets with Prestige specification or the enormous £2,000 premium needed for the diesel.

If you don’t need sat-nav, there’s no need to pay any more than for Essential trim. It looks good, as its name suggests, it includes all the essential kit you’d want and is a substantial chunk cheaper than the Comfort model above it.

In a similar vein, range-topping Prestige trim carries a steep price hike, though most drivers will be perfectly happy without these extras and with a little more money in their pocket each month.

In terms of engines, due to its far lower price, the petrol makes more sense to typical buyers and company car drivers alike, at least until the more potent turbocharged 1.2-litre petrol arrives in 2019.

We had a brief drive in the diesel off-road and this is far smoother and more refined than in the previous version. Add to this its far greater mid-range punch than the 1.6-litre petrol and it seems to make sense on paper, but we can’t ignore how much it costs. This leaves the 1.2-litre petrol as the likely smart choice.

Dacia Duster SUV model history

  • June 2018 – Second-generation Dacia Duster introduced with 1.6-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel power. Two- and four-wheel drive options available with choice of basic Access trim and Essential, Comfort and Prestige trims.

Buying and selling the Dacia Duster SUV

Buying a new Dacia Duster SUV

Despite the low headline prices, Dacia drivers often trade up to pricier versions. We’d steer clear of range-topping Prestige trim – why pay a premium for extra trinkets on a budget model? – and ultra-basic Access trim, but you can’t go wrong with the other trims, as these offer plenty of kit and very good value.

Comfort is likely to prove popular, as this is the cheapest trim that includes sat-nav, while the falling popularity of diesel engines means it’s the 1.6-litre petrol that is likely to head up sales – allied to the staggeringly high £2,000 premium needed for diesel power over petrol versions.

PCP finance is just as good value from Dacia. Yes, interest charges are high, but the low cash prices and strong residual values makes this scheme a very appealing option – whether you intend to make the optional final payment to purchase the car at the end of the contract or hand it back.

There are few options available to complicate the purchase process, though Dacia does offer a load of accessories including mudguards, bootliners, towbars and off-road trim to help personalise your car. Bar metallic paint, there’s not much we’d imagine you’d need to add, so there’s no need to splurge unless you really have to make your car stand out.

Car finance video: PCP explained

Buying a used Dacia Duster SUV

From launch, the Duster is expected to sell reasonably well, so you should have a good choice of used models. Ultra-basic Access models are likely to be harder to sell on in future and lack lots of kit many buyers would expect as standard, so it may pay to look for a better equipped model – and one of these is likely to prove much more pleasant to live with, too.

Selling your Dacia Duster SUV

Access models may prove tricky to sell on, due to their matt white paint and spartan interiors, but as always, make sure you thoroughly clean your car inside and out and take photos of all four sides, the interior and boot to give it the best chance of selling quickly and for a good price.

Writing a clear, concise but thorough summary of the car’s history – including any optional extras fitted – should help you sell the car for a good price. If the car has a full service history, plenty of time until the next MOT is due or other particularly positive features, such as four new tyres, make sure to mention these.

Make sure you advertise the car for the right price to ensure that you can successfully sell the car by getting an accurate Parkers Valuation.

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