The Renault Duster is a legendary name in its own might, at least when it comes to the Indian scenario. Among the sea of compact SUVs that have crowded the segment, the Duster still remain different in its own intent by proving to be the most dynamically capable SUV in its own class. But the onslaught of its more modern rivals have proved that despite its mechanical capabilities, the Duster has started feeling a little dated. Well, good news for us, Renault is currently testing a 7-seater version of the Duster which is based on the second generation of the SUV which we never got to see here.
The test mule which was recently spied wears no camouflage, hinting that it could have been out in the open for a TVC shoot.
If reports are to be believed, it will be christened ‘Grand Duster’ when it enters production. The latest spy shot has revealed some key details about the ‘Grand Duster’. First up, it looks longer than the standard Duster. To give you an idea, the current-generation Duster is 4341 mm long while the ‘Grand Duster’ could measure somewhere around 4.6m, just like the Bigster concept. The longer wheelbase will ensure that the company doesn’t have that much trouble in carving out an extra row of seats. The cabin of the car is still under wraps and so are the engine specifications. That said, we expect Dacia to offer the Grand Duster with both 6- and 7-seat layouts. The former will feature captain seats in the middle row, while the latter will get a bench-type seat. The 6-seat layout will likely be offered on the higher trims, while the 7-seat setup will be offered as standard.
Coming to the aesthetic changes now, it is pretty evident that the front end of the 7-seater SUV sports some changes over the Duster that we have here. The front fascia of the Dacia Grand Duster (Renault Grand Duster) shares a resemblance to the second-generation Duster that’s retailed in global markets. On the side, the new 7-seater Renault Duster features a new set of diamond-cut alloy wheels. While the overall silhouette is almost similar, it definitely looks more aggressive than before.
In UK, the SUV is offered in four trims – Access, Essential, Comfort and Prestige. A total of six engine configurations are available – three petrol, one bi-fuel and two diesel options. The lowest capacity engine is a 999cc petrol unit that is capable of generating 90 hp of max power at 5000 rpm and 160 Nm of max torque at 2750 rpm. It is mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox. The 1,333 cc petrol motor is offered in two configurations, delivering 130 hp / 240 Nm and 150 hp / 250 Nm. The 1,461 cc diesel motor makes 115 hp / 260 Nm. For the Indian market, Renault is likely to offer only petrol engine options for new-gen Duster. The current model has a 1.5 litre petrol and a 1.3 litre turbo petrol motor.