Renault gained first mover advantage in the compact Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) segment with the Duster model. The car was instrumental in stirring demand for such vehicles among Indian buyers. Since its debut in July 2012, sales of Duster have been stable and there is no denying the fact that the car still ranks ahead of its rivals in various aspects. Renault Duster has received critical acclaim for its muscular built, comfortable interiors and superlative performance. This car has been able to revive fortunes of the French car maker in India. Reports had been emerging regarding the launch of the facelift version of this model. Now, it is likely that the company might unveil the new updated version of the same at Auto Expo 2014. The other reason behind the launch of updated Duster could be the market share captured by Ford EcoSport, which has outpaced the demand for Renault’s compact SUV.
In major foreign markets, Duster is sold by Dacia, a company which falls under the ownership of Renault. Recently, Romanian manufacturer Dacia unveiled the facelift version of Duster globally, which further fuelled rumours that parent, Renault, will be showcasing the model at the Auto Expo 2014 in Greater Noida. Updates given to Dacia Duster were cosmetic in nature as the company did not alter mechanic configuration of the car. Therefore, it is being said that the same model, that was unveiled globally, will make way in the Indian car market bearing the Renault badge.
Reportedly, the new Renault Duster is going to bear slightly different dimensions as compared to the existing version. Major changes will be seen at the front portion of the vehicle in which a restructured grille and integrated daytime running headlamps are expected to be given along with a new air intake. However, the car would retain almost the same design given as the current generation model but a few changes will be visible. Addition of the new 16-inch dark metal alloy wheels will lend a better appearance to Duster. At the rear, Renault will give some updates that include new tail lights and a chrome tip exhaust. Sources have even suggested that the updated Duster will get new colour options.
Talking about the interiors, Duster facelift will get a more modernised cabin and central console. The redesigned dashboard of Duster might get a new instrument cluster panel, which will be more exclusive. Furthermore, the car is expected to get the MediaNav touch screen navigation system, new power window switches, integrated-steering controls and Bluetooth connectivity. Rumours are rife that Renault might introduce a new variant of Duster, powered by 1.2-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine. This engine is offered in major international markets having an output of 118 bhp. The reason attributed for the low-specification engine could be to rival the 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine given in Ford EcoSport.
Once launched, it will be quite exciting how facelifted Duster manages to fare as compared to the fiercest rival, Ford EcoSport. According to sources, new Duster will be first unveiled at 2014 Auto Expo after which the launch shall soon follow. As far as the pricing is concerned, the upcoming model might be Rs. 20000 to Rs. 30000 costlier than the current version.