A massive increase in the petrol price recently has us all tightening our belts and if you are one of those worrying about buying an affordable vehicle that will remain affordable on the road as well, whilst still giving you the benefits of an SUV or off-roading vehicle, this article is for you. The Renault Duster has everything you need in this regard – and more.
BB Hatfield Renault is overseen by veteran motoring enthusiast André Gouws who is the Dealer Principal at the Dealership. With an incredible philosophy regarding customer service, André emphasises the use of care when it comes to clients. The Dealership commits itself to developing and maintaining professional, trust relationships with each client in order to understand their needs and meet it in the best way possible. What makes this Dealership so successful is the fact that André has invested a great deal of time and effort in identifying the right team members, placing them in the right role in the Dealership, in such a way that they are doing the right job, in the right way. In the last 14 months, this was manifested in a focus on staff training and nurturing a customer-centric perspective; this strategy has produced many happy clients as well as many happy return clients, and this speaks volumes about what this Dealership stands for.
In any dealership, it is vital to have the right people on the showroom floor. Energetic and passionate sales representative, Izak Steenkamp, has two years’ of experience in the industry and is enthusiastic about selling cars. With a supporting interest in Financing and Insurance, Izak is also well-skilled to serve his clients. His opinion on the Renault brand is based on the fact that these vehicles are so much more affordable than anything else in its segment, considering the number of standard features on board.
The confident and stocky look of the Renault Duster is a testimony to the design that is meant to fare as well on urban roads, as it should on the off-roading scene. With suave elements of modernity, the vehicle might have masculine and tough DNA, but there is a definite flair around the powerful body that resonates with the lady driver too. On the inside, the Duster looks elegant and well finished with care and forethought. With a wheelbase of 2.673 mm and an overall length of 4.315 mm, it is easy to see why comfort is a given in this vehicle; ample head and leg room in the cabin makes it feel spacious, with beautifully upholstered seating that is both comfortable and raised for better visibility. The dashboard layout emphasises modern and technological elements, highlighted in the six-function on-board computer.
The take-off and drive in the Duster is, as expected with Renault, smooth and silky, bordering on sublime. Tackling the hectically congested city traffic conditions was easy and precise, and even rough jarring dirt roads were taken on without hesitation. I felt confident in the abilities of the vehicle, whilst remaining comfortable at all times on the inside. With ABS and Emergency Brake Assist as standard features on the Duster, there was little doubt in my mind of what the vehicle was capable of. Driver and Passenger airbags are also included on all variants, and with class-leading safety ratings, I would be happy to have my family and children in the Duster too. With great pull at initial acceleration, thanks to the new generation 1.5 dCi engine, there is ample power to play with whilst maximising fuel efficiency. The engine is said to benefit from a low inertia variable geometry turbo which provides a great combination between power output and petrol consumption.
Available in three variants, the entry level 1.6 Duster Expression 4×2 costs R246 900 and has standard features that include ABS, Emergency Brake Assist, Driver and Passenger Airbags (including Front Head/Thorax Side Airbags), Radio/CD/MP3/USB audio system with Bluetooth and Satellite Music Controls, as well as Rear Park sensors and cruise control. Releasing 77 kW of power and 148 Nm of torque, this variant is light on fuel whilst still giving ample drive to crunch over rocks. The same engine is on-board the mid-spec Duster Dynamique 1.6 4×2 which starts pricing options from R266 900 and has touchscreen navigation with Bluetooth, reverse camera, satin chrome roof bars, front/rear skid-plate and side-skirt covers as well as a black split leather steering wheel.
The top of the range Dynamique 1.5 dCi has the now-popular diesel engine to boot, and comes in at around R299 900, which is really well priced for a vehicle in this segment with these capabilities. It is also available in 4×2 and 4×4 options. The 4×4 variant is equipped to tackle the toughest terrain, and comes standard with ABS, EBA and ESP, and comes standard with integrated Navigation and Transmission Mode Selector. Both the 4×4 and 4×2 variant produce 80 KW of power and 240 Nm of torque, whilst still delivering fuel consumption of between 4.8 and 5 litres per 100 kilometres on the combined cycle. This level of fuel efficiency is quite remarkable for the SUV segment, and in this regard, has already won me over. The benefits of off-roading abilities combined with the sleek and comfortable urban drive make the Duster a worthy vehicle.
Driving the Duster gives me a feeling of consistency and reliability. Naturally when a good product such as this is supported by the superb after-sales care packages offered by this Dealership, the Duster makes a valuable (and clever) acquisition to the modern family, as well as the adventurer who likes to kick up dust in their spare time. Available with various gorgeous trim and accessory packs, the Duster can also be customised to suit your individual needs.
Once again back at the Dealership, the commitment to customer care is reaffirmed by the Dealer Principal’s open-door policy which ensures clients who are not satisfied can be assisted personally by management. Hands-on and invested leadership makes this Dealership unique and virtually guarantees happy clients.
For a closer look at what this Dealership has to offer, please follow this link:BB Hatfield Renault
Editor: Desh Bechan
Reporter and Author: Inge Stols & Belinda Anderson