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Review: the Dacia Sandero

January 16, 2015

In today’s review, we’re taking a closer look at the Dacia Sandero. First introduced in 2007, the Romanian supermini has greatly improved on its predecessor. Now in its second generation, the Sandero makes headlines by being economic, practical and very low priced. Dacia cars are renowned for their oddness – and while they certainly had to take some liberties with its kit to keep the price down, the Dacia Sandero really is a delightfully quirky car. Find out everything you need to know in today’s Dacia Sandero review.

Dacia Sandero

Original image by Oliver MURANI

Design

Fans of the VW Polo can probably see some of its influence here. Renault’s lead designer Laurens van de Acker has admitted that the Dacia Sandero gets its compact look from the Polo, and the result works rather well. Chunky but modern, the little supermini uses its short wheelbase to its advantage. Less pleasing to the eyes are the plastics that dominate the look of the entry level car – but higher level trims provide the option to replace the grey bumpers, mirrors and door handles with materials in the same colour as the shell, resulting in a sexy contemporary look.

Features

As we say, to keep costs down, the Dacia Sandero had to do away with some of the comforts you’d expect in a car designed by Renault. The entry level model comes with manual windows and locks, a heater and demister – while Isofix child seat points and four airbags keep you and your family safe. Another feature well worth a mention is the roomy interior – the Dacia Sandero is the largest car in its segment and this manifests in a seriously spacious interior that can very comfortably seat four adults. And last but not least, thanks to its strategic design, the Dacia Sandero sports the biggest boot in its class.

Performance

The entry level engine for the Dacia Sandero is a 1.2-litre petrol, which will certainly get you from A to B without a problem; its 0-62mph time of 14.5 seconds and top speed of 97mph are reasonable to say the least.  If you plan to take your Dacia out of the city often, though, one of the other two engines on offer should float your boat. The other petrol engine is a turbocharged three-cylinder 0.9-litre TCe with a top speed of 109mph – or you can opt for the 1.5-litre dCi 90 diesel with a top speed of 104mph. Both take a good 2 seconds off the 0-62mph time of the entry level engine. The diesel is the clear winner if you’re worried about fuel economy, returning 74.3 miles to the gallon and boasting a brilliantly low 99g/km of CO2 emissions. The cabin can get a little noisy at high speeds, but the car is an undeniably sturdy little machine. All in all, the Sandero gives you a lot more than it needs to at a price like that.

Dacia Sandero Interior

Original image by Oliver MURANI

Speaking of which, prices start at £5,995 – leaving the Dacia Sandero leagues ahead of its closest supermini competitor. It’s economic, roomy and it handles well – and if you’re looking to get around town for next to nothing, the Dacia Sandero is a wonderful choice.

Need some help financing the Dacia Sandero? The Car Loan Warehouse can help. Apply now to find the funds for your very own supermini – or try our car finance calculator today for an instant quote.

About The Author

Jon Le Roux is co-founder and company director of The Car Loan Warehouse. Being a mad engineering and motorsport enthusiast, I spend more hours than is healthy, watching, reading or talking about cars, boats, motorbikes…..basically anything with an engine.