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Old 12th December 2013, 09:48   #1
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Default Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Hi Guys,

This is an off-road excursion with a twist.

The Protagonist is a 2WD Renault Duster.

We have been getting a few enthusiasts with Dusters for the SUV off-road excursions since March 2013.

As we drove the vehicles, we realised it is quite capable off-road, due to it Ground Clearance, Neat ADR Angles, and Front Engine FWD configuration.

In August, Tyrestore Deepak (Chordia) suggested the same to, Vimal Chordia, CEO, Khivraj Pearl.

Khivraj were very keen on giving their customers a very different experience, and sent a Duster and a Koleos for the September SUV off-road Excursion, so that we can do a detailed trial.

This was re-inforced by another exhaustive trial on 23rd November SUV off-Road Excursion.

Post the Trial, we decided to have the event on 7th December, fully sponsored by Khivraj Pearl.

These events objective is to train and give off-road experience to Renault Duster owners through the year.

Conduct a Selection Program and field a team of Renault Duster owners & their Vehicles for the Raid-De-Himalaya 2014 and the Desert Storm 2015.

A Teaser Clip --


Regards,

Arka
Attached Thumbnails
Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)-hindumetro-pluspg2111213.jpg  

Attached Files
File Type: pdf Off-Road Program-7Dec2013.pdf (1.56 MB, 500 views)
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Old 12th December 2013, 11:20   #2
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Default Group#1

Hi Guys,

The Marshals setup the Park Firme and Driver's Briefing Spot, and were waiting for the participants to arrive.

The plan was to take 7-10 Participants and divide the lot of 30 Vehicles (expected) into 4 Teams and do a run of the various trails and obstacles.

The first 6 vehicles arrived in rapid succession, and we were running 1 hour behind schedule, so we decided to take the first 6 vehicles to the Bonus Trail (Slush Trail).

2 Marshal, in a Gypsy and Duster 110 lead the group into the slush trail.

On entering the trail we had a briefing session, on off-road basics, and started out.

Immediately vehicles started loosing traction, either because of too much power or too little power. The Vehicles were towed out and the suitable technique was explained and we continued further.

The Renault Duster 110 has sufficient power is applied properly can easily move through ankle deep slush trails, more aggressive tyres will definitely help.

We also had a Lady Driver Miss P Prakash, encouraged through out by her Parents, her dad happens to follow TEAM BHP very actively

There were a variety of of obstacles from slaloms to small ruts, deep ruts, where the wheels had to placed on the mounds instead of the ruts.

All the vehicles were stuck atleat 6 times, and on the return leg, I got stuck a couple of times .

In the mean while another 8 vehicles reported to the Campsite at PNC Farms, and the Marshals took them to the Main Trail.

Regards,

Arka
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Old 12th December 2013, 11:45   #3
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Default Main Trail - Obstacle#1 Snake Pit

So while Group#1 was heading back to PNC Farms, Group#2 Lead by Vikram (Headers) carried on to the main trail.

The First Obstacle was the snake pit, which is a long undulating channel.

The objective was to drive the vehicle in the Channel, between the flags and then drive on off-camber on the channel walls, this was tricky since the Duster isn't 2WD, and has no Low-Range to slow the vehicle down.

The technique was to use the 1st Gear, and ease the clutch to allow the vehicle to move forward, regulating the vehicle speed with ONLY the Clutch.

Regards,

Arka
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Old 12th December 2013, 12:03   #4
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Default Snake Pit

This Obstacle surprised the Duster owners, the vehicles were lifting there wheels, negotiating turns and ruts in the channel.

Slowly driven the Duster is quite stable on 3 Legs.

This also helped prepare participants for the next two obstacles, which were more demanding.
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Old 12th December 2013, 13:24   #5
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Default re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Note to Renault:

Add 4WD to base version of 85 BHP diesel Duster. And maybe 4WD to top end 110BHP Duster.

And watch your sales go up by atleast 25%!
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Old 13th December 2013, 16:08   #6
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Default re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

I took the Duster all the way down here. The camera conceals the angles. Plus, the grass was wet from a recent shower.



For a soft-roader, it left me pleasantly surprised! No part of the SUV hit the surface and the approach / departure angles weren't too bad either. It's light weight definitely helps it in the rough.

On the flip side, the OEM tarmac-based tyres lose grip easily. And the 110's turbo-lag was a nightmare on the slippery stuff. The sudden turbo whoosh made precise accelerator inputs impossible. Would prefer the 85 PS variant.

A Duster with 4x4 and all-terrain rubber would be capable enough to keep 98% of the aam junta satisfied.

P.S. The rest of us shouldn't look away from our basic body-on-frame Jeeps & Gypsies.
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Old 13th December 2013, 17:36   #7
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Quote:
Originally Posted by smartcat View Post
Note to Renault:

And maybe 4WD to top end 110BHP Duster.

And watch your sales go up by atleast 25%!
reliable info says 4x4 Duster , 110Ps slated for launch next year mid or diwali
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Old 14th December 2013, 11:20   #8
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

@Arka : That looked great. No Tbhpians among the participants? Would love to hear a first hand account from the participant - a off-road novice's point of view

And, perhaps, you & Headers can also elaborate more on where the Duster aced and where it lacked
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Old 16th December 2013, 11:05   #9
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Wonder if a FWD Duster any better than a Maruti SX4 for "Off roading".
Any half decent off road enthusiast would cringe look at these pics.
Looks like a cheap marketing gimmick by Renault.
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Old 16th December 2013, 12:29   #10
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Default ADR -Climbs

Quote:
Originally Posted by JediKnight View Post
Wonder if a FWD Duster any better than a Maruti SX4 for "Off roading".
Any half decent off road enthusiast would cringe look at these pics.
Looks like a cheap marketing gimmick by Renault.

Hi Jediknight,

The initiative was from the Dealership, if Renault catches on, even better for the Duster owner, and prospective owners

The Next Set of obstacles was to make the driver understand the terrain variations in a short span, and to challenge the vehicles ADR angles.

Regards,

Arka
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Last edited by ex670c : 16th December 2013 at 12:31.
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Old 16th December 2013, 19:25   #11
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Interesting thread; thanks for sharing 'ex670c'. I wasn't aware that so much was happening on the off-road front for a 2 wheel-drive Duster.
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Old 17th December 2013, 11:25   #12
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

If this is what a front wheel drive Duster can do, a four wheel drive or all wheel drive variant will surely end the days for Mahindra owning off road terriroty. I had my reservations about the Duster going off road. With this post, its all out of the window. I still find the Duster expensive for what it is. It is rugged for sure, so is a Logan and it is a car on stilts. With that, I don't think it should cost twice over.

It is time Renault considered bringing in the all wheel or four wheel drive variant cause we clearly don't have a problem paying big bucks for something that is reliable and has already proven itself well.
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Old 18th December 2013, 08:47   #13
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Hey guys,
Its nice to see duster do some spirited moves.
Guessing what a 44 can do.
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Old 18th December 2013, 10:21   #14
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Hi - thanks for posting these. I am quite interested to know how you compare the dusters performance with other softroaders - XUV, Storme, Ecosport etc and where it lacks from a Gypsy/Jeep in a 2WD mode.

Given that we are getting a bunch of softroaders into our market, it would great to do a test to see how they fare in a mild offroad scenario - which most of us face if we have a farm, live in a semi-urban setting or if we were to move out of the urban jungle and go on a holiday - slush, ruts, big humps.

What are the parameters that really make a difference - Ground clearance, approach/departure angles, suspension setup?, power delivery, tyres, ?

I am in the market to a buy a softroader - ecosport, duster, storme, xuv, yeti (yaah, thats a wide range). While the Tbhp reviews do a superb job of taking about the onroad abilities, would greatly look forward to a offroad comparison. Just to clarify, by offroad, I dont mean climbing boulders or doing the jeep stunts. I am talking about tackling bad village roads with ruts & humps in the monsoon rain.

Thanks!
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Old 18th December 2013, 10:49   #15
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Default Re: Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)

Quote:
Originally Posted by JediKnight View Post
Wonder if a FWD Duster any better than a Maruti SX4 for "Off roading". Any half decent off road enthusiast would cringe look at these pics.Looks like a cheap marketing gimmick by Renault.
Jediknight - I would agree it a marketing tactic, but what is so cheap in it? It way better to educate the owners of the vehicle of what they are capable off.. I don't see any OEM taking part in any of the Indian rally scenes, other than TATA.

I would love to see a SX4 par on a rutted road though, let alone Off road.

I'm not sure how many duster owners know Duster is an accomplished vehicle in one of the most grueling rally's of the world. The 2013 edition of the Dakar has been characterized by Renault mark the return of the world's toughest rally. The French brand was present in the car division , one of the strongest and most competitive in the race.

Renault Duster Off-Road Excursions, by Khivraj Pearl (Dealer)-emiliano_spatano_dakar_2013.jpg
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