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Dacia Duster Concept Revealed Ahead of Geneva Debut

In case of recession - move up-market. That seems to be the message heeded by automakers like Citroen and Dacia. The former is reintroducing the higher-spec DS line while the latter is unveiling the Duster crossover concept at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show tomorrow. As a design study the Duster concept signals Dacia's intentions of being taken more seriously as a quality brand than it has been before.

The Duster measures 4.25 metres in length, is 1.49m high and has a wheelbase of 2.8m. Loading space is 470dm3 (VDA) while the interior features a two-tone chocolate and blue combination. It's a versatile concept that allows the front passenger seat to slide under the driver's seat to create more loading space.
The front grille has Dacia design elements with a headlights cluster that wraps all the way around to where the front door hinges.

The exterior is fitted with oversized 21-inch aluminium alloy wheels and the exterior mirrors are placed so high up the A-pillar they are almost on the roof. At the back the Duster concept features wrap-around rear lights and trapezoidal tail lamps.

Fitted in the engine bay is a 1.5dCi engine with 105hp (77kW) and 240Nm of torque. A sprint time for the 0 - 100km/h run of 9.6 seconds is claimed when driven by the 6-speed manual gearbox. The engine produces a C02 emissions figure of 139g/km and an average fuel consumption of 5.3 litres per 100km.

 

Source: Renault

DUSTER: THE CONCEPT CROSSOVER FROM DACIA UNVEILED AT GENEVA MOTORSHOW

  • Dacia is breaking fresh ground and springs yet another surprise with the unveiling in Geneva of Duster, a futuristic, image-building crossover that promotes the same values for which the brand has stood from the beginning.
  • Duster is Dacia's first concept car and the fruit of close collaboration between Renault Design Central Europe in Bucharest, Romania, and Renault Design Technocentre in Guyancourt, France.
  • Duster's athletic stance adds an undeniable sporty feel to the brand's hallmark robustness.
  • Inside, the use of colour, generous cabin space and an original modular layout ensure a
    particularly convivial ambience for occupants.

ROBUST AND SPORTY

Duster - Dacia's first concept crossover - is proud to be different. Seen from the driver's side, it is visibly a sporting coupé, yet passengers entering from the other side will see it as an MPV (Multi Purpose Vehicle) with a traditionally opening front door and rear-hinged rear door which suggest plush travelling refinement. Duster's height of 1.49 metres, short front and rear overhangs (65cm and 80cm respectively), generous wheelbase (2.80m) and compact volumes (4.25m long, 1.64m wide) exude an overriding sense of robustness and sports appeal.

The front end features a broad bumper with two horizontal air-intake slits that suggest power. The grille
features evident Dacia styling cues and is flanked by headlamps which wrap over the front wings to form a tapering line of light that stretches rearward towards the doors.

Viewed from the side, the clear-cut lines of the wheel arches and tall doors reinforce the impression that Duster sits squarely on the road. The Anthracite Grey bodywork and extensive one-piece glazed sweep - made possible by the absence of a central pillar - highlights the styling of the sides which are unmistakably reminiscent of Duster's graphic identity.

At the rear, the engraved Dacia logo further emphasizes the concept car's robust, dependable credentials. Like Logan, Duster is just 4.25 metres long, and its inherent agility ensures that it is perfectly at home in the urban jungle. Meanwhile, its 21-inch, five-spoke aluminium alloy wheels, exterior mirrors positioned on the window surround and trapezoidal aluminium exhaust tailpipes are telltale signs of its sporting pedigree. Special care has gone into Duster's aerodynamic efficiency (Cd: 0.30) and the fluid lines of the body sides enable air to flow freely along the vehicle's flanks before being jettisoned through the rear lights. The aerodynamic, wing-like forms of the roof-mounted direction indicators also channel airflow towards the rear. The sum of all this work has naturally been beneficial to fuel consumption, and Duster stands out as a particularly environmentally-respectful crossover. Despite its performance potential, the particulate filter equipped 1.5 dCi 105hp engine (77kW) emits just 139g of CO2/km, equivalent to fuel consumption of 5.3 litres/100km.

A CROSSOVER WITH DACIA HALLMARKS

This futuristic crossover showcases the brand's core values - namely simplicity, robustness and authenticity - in a surprising form, yet Dacia's hallmark ingenuity and generosity are immediately apparent in the way designers have approached Duster's cabin.

The concept car's two-tone chocolate and blue interior exudes a sense of well-being and conviviality. The fully glazed roof floods the cabin with light, while the enveloping forms of the staggered slim-line front seats provide first class comfort and support. The driver's seat is incorporated in a structure which extends all the way from the sill to the centre console, forming a sculptural, one-piece ensemble that echoes the exterior's sporty appeal.

The user-friendly dashboard features fluid, expressive lines while employing simple materials. The driver's side front airbag is housed in the lower part of the steeringwheel which has made it possible to position the screen centrally and free up appreciable stowage space on the dashboard. The latter's receding lines also provide record kneeroom of 280mm for the front passenger who benefits from an exceptionally comfortable seating position. The bellows-like form of the original two-tone dashboard incorporates a 20-litre glovebox, while the door inserts each include eight-litre stowage bins. Another bin has been cleverly concealed in the back of the rear right-hand seat. A simple push causes a box to slide forward from the boot which itself is in total keeping with the Dacia spirit, with the upright tailgate providing a carrying capacity of 470dm3 (VDA), a remarkable achievement for a vehicle of Duster's compact overall dimensions .

Duster is an adaptable, modular concept car. The four-seat 'daily driver' layout can be swiftly converted into a leisure configuration in a matter of seconds. The passenger seat slides underneath the driver's seat on rails concealed in the floor to leave just one front seat and consequently free up a total carrying volume of two cubic metres. Thanks to a recess in the floor and a strap located under the dashboard, this space can be used to carry a trials mountain bike.

 

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Comments (18)

 GTurbo GTurbo
Third world brand, 21st Century design. This Dacia concept should be taken seriously and kudos to Renault. Great video and soundtrack too. The smart by Mercedes and Scion by Toyota are great examples of what bugdet brands are supposed to be; youthfully hip without being tacky. If only VW can revive the fortunes of Seat and stop it from being left on the back seat (excuse the pun). The Skoda jokes are long dead and buried.
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November 13, 2009 5:35 pm
 radmeister radmeister
Hey you know what, even if they just take the outline of this car and produce something with a similar shape it will be better than anything the big 3 have to offer in this segment. I for one think it looks cool, especially the tail light idea, and am really surprised with their rendering quality and CGI video. Bravo!
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March 3, 2009 5:48 am
 racsozelev racsozelev
to all of you guys who have a degree in design, probably you would think different if the car carried a land rover badge, so, where is the problem? or better said, who has a problem? this is shameful for VW also, renault is doing with dacia what VW should be doing with seat (see that thing called exeo....)
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March 2, 2009 10:13 pm
 Max_Speed Max_Speed
Looks like everyone over here has a degree in design. Most of you don't even know the whole purpose of a CONCEPT car ...
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March 2, 2009 8:29 pm
 Renegade Renegade
Hmm, looks like a bad guy car from a 90's Sci Fi movie.
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March 2, 2009 7:48 pm
It looks like something that would appear in Transformers. Rubbish name though, Duster, all it needs now is its 'feather' twin and it will be complete!
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March 2, 2009 7:27 pm
 freeway freeway
as a concept it has some interesting and original features considering the manufacturer that releases it, proving that these young designers are not sleeping, on the other hand has some exaggerated - over designed elements, IMO... but all in all... quite interesting for Dacia... and you know: the beauty is in the eye of the beholder, some people will like the concept, some will hate it!
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March 2, 2009 7:07 pm
 alessandro alessandro
Dacia is almost like Renault now. They can show too what they have to be spoilt to the Renaultian level of idiomatically limited productive imaginery.
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March 2, 2009 7:06 pm
 politz politz
Hideous. Guess even the Logan looks better than that.
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March 2, 2009 5:10 pm
 gorgonzola gorgonzola
This thing is phenomenal! ....best looking prototype after a long time, next to the saab aero x and renault megane concept. It smacks the premium in the eye never mind face.... thank God somebody is the car industry is thinking....
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March 2, 2009 4:15 pm
 ShinyG ShinyG
^If you're trying to be funny, at least say something original, quoting May is as lame as his early driving skills... Anyway: I'd have to say this concept is quite interesting, especially coming from a low-cost manufacturer. Kinda' smacks the "premium" brands (a.k.a. everybody is premium these days) right in the face, doesn't it?
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March 2, 2009 3:12 pm
 Pentium Pentium
Great news, Dacia is making a new cross-over!
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March 2, 2009 3:00 pm