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Old 16th November 2014, 21:18   #136
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

Hi
After the compelling TBHP test drive & a couple of suggestions to try out the Duster, I thought I must keep the Sedan obsession at bay for a while.

I tried the Duster AWD (top version) a while ago. The response from the Renault team was super quick & they got the car in no time. I drove it through:-

- Rough roads.
- Winding roads.
- Blinder corners &
- Straight roads.

My feedback is:-

- Steering moves with road conditions. The reps expressed shock & claimed this was the first time someone reported such action on the steering wheel.
- Steering response is a wee bit inconsistent (slow at times)
- The car doesn't care about road conditions, but there's a bit of a bounce. Dampening is a big slow.
- Cornering is not all that sedan like. Though car is stable on the road, body roll is evident, though not alarming. Tyres didn't squeal on pushed at the corners.
- Engine noise evident at any rpm & speed. Not too obtrusive though.


Have others too experienced something similar?

On the positive side:-

- No turbo lag. The very slight sluggishness is quite acceptable for a mini SUV
- Eats up roads. No thumping & rocking on the underbody (deliberately passed over a nasty pothole)
- The back seat hump is almost no hindrance. (Rapid & Yeti have a useless middle seat)
- Absolutely no drama on braking hard/panic braking.

My observations on cornering & steering response is based on my experiences with the Rapid & Yeti, which I drive often. Just did a Mumbai - Ankleshwar round trip on Thursday (drove for a good while & was on the front & back seats).

The obvious & evident differences (Yeti vs Rapid)

The steering wheel of the Yeti is firm at any speed & doesn't twitch or move on uneven surfaces. Inspires supreme confidence.

Body roll on the Yeti definitely is well controlled.

The torque boost is beastly in the Yeti. This helps during tight spaced overtakings (especially between undisciplined trucks) Torque flow is well controlled in the Duster.

Cornering is very evidently easier on the Yeti. Though not bad, the Duster is miles behind Yeti.

On back seat leg space the Yeti wins hands down. Being based on a larger platform sure helps. But Duster isn't bad at all. For average Indian heights, I doubt if someone would complain. Shoulder space too seemed adequate. Also, the useful middle seat helps. The Yeti's middle seat is good for the handrest. The huge hump take away its utility.

The Yeti, with all its refinement, has no silent cabin. Though wind noise is cancelled, road noise is evident, especially at high speeds. And it indeed is annoying. Didn't drive the Duster so long to make comments. But if its on the same level, it wouldn't be a pleasant experience.

The Dashboard & interior quality of the Yeti is far too ahead of the Duster in every way. Duster simply can't get there. And this is unjust for the price you pay. We drive the 2WD Yeti whose on-road pricing is only a little more than Duster. For that price Duster isn't giving the money's worth.

But here's the strange part. The ride quality (back seat) of the Yeti doesn't measure up to Duster. Its my personal feeling & I could be wrong. Except for the slightly bouncy dampening (which probably can be tuned to be stiffer), the Duster beats the Yeti here.

Rapid vs Duster

The segments are different, but since the Rapid was the car I almost finalised & since I drive it or travel on it frequently, I'd like to make a personal feedback.

- Driving dynamics of the Rapid beats Duster's & Yeti's by multi miles. The car sticks to the road adamantly, at any speed. Body roll is almost non existent. Ofcourse, here we are talking about a sedan with much lesser G.C. Its the perfect runaway car.

- Again, Duster's ride quality has no match in the Rapid's. While the Rapid indeed soaks up bad roads, you still have to slow down. The Duster doesn't care a damn.

- Again, mid seat is useless in the Rapid.

- The steering, though lighter than the Yeti's, is evidently firmer than Duster's. Response at any speed is super quick.

So well, it seems like my choice of a new car has a new contender - The Duster.

Tomorrow I shall be testing the 2WD Duster (Torsion bar). Shall take a decision after that & trying the Mobilio as well.
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Old 17th November 2014, 06:50   #137
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

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Originally Posted by DessertOnWheels View Post

- Steering moves with road conditions. The reps expressed shock & claimed this was the first time someone reported such action on the steering wheel.
- Steering response is a wee bit inconsistent (slow at times)
- The car doesn't care about road conditions, but there's a bit of a bounce. Dampening is a big slow.
- Cornering is not all that sedan like. Though car is stable on the road, body roll is evident, though not alarming. Tyres didn't squeal on pushed at the corners.
- Engine noise evident at any rpm & speed. Not too obtrusive though.
Hi DessertOnWheels, Point no:1 & 2, even i am listening to it for the first time, I had test driven 2 85 PS, 2 110 PS 2WD & 1 RXZ AWD from the showroom before buying my RXZ AWD (completed 1200 KMS in 1.5 Weeks), I have never experienced steering movement, There is definite feedback but not as bad to be called as steering movement. And Steering response has been excellent for an EPAS unit. I come from a pure HPS unit before Duster.
Regarding Cornering again i felt Duster to be more calm and composed and you just have to make sure that you are in 1700 to 2000 RPM while doing that to be in the Turbo Zone, i got used to this in no time.
Regarding the comparison with Yeti - I totally agree that Yeti is better, be it interiors or drive quality - Which was my original choice. Vinayak Skoda's attitude and pricing of the New Yeti has successfully pushed me away from them. That being said, Rapid is no comparison to Duster except for the Silent cabin. Duster gets noisy, and takes in heavy wind noise as well - It's no way a silent cabin.
Skoda is all drama, if i had the money and patience to deal with them, would have definitely gone for the Yeti instead of the Duster.
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Old 17th November 2014, 06:59   #138
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

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Originally Posted by micrographics View Post
Rehaan

I did checked but first KM/L shows the fuel efficieny but the other one always shows ---.--
Rakesh, As Rehaan mentioned above you need to be moving for that to Change as it's instantaneous mileage. Just check if readings change when you drive.

On a Different Note, Went to JC Road yesterday in search of better lights.
On talking to different shops, found that P8 HID Conversion kit is very good and costing around 9K. Planning to install that on High beam and go for NBU for low beam - Any thoughts?
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Old 17th November 2014, 08:22   #139
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

The Amazon Green that I seem to like in the Duster. I looked at a few pictures here (Renault Duster AWD launched at Rs. 11.89 lakh (pg. 15))

But this one looks like the normal Woodland brown touched up with some green paint!

Also, is climate control present on the AWD. The discounts at this point seem good, though it is still quite expensive? Is is not?
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Old 17th November 2014, 08:58   #140
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

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Originally Posted by DessertOnWheels View Post
The Yeti, with all its refinement, has no silent cabin. Though wind noise is cancelled, road noise is evident, especially at high speeds.

The Dashboard & interior quality of the Yeti is far too ahead of the Duster in every way. Duster simply can't get there. And this is unjust for the price you pay.
I think the culprit would be the tires. A change to Michelin in the Yeti does good to the road noise and ride department.

Those HVAC controls...

Quote:
Originally Posted by johy View Post
The discounts at this point seem good, though it is still quite expensive? Is is not?
Parting with the T-Jet or replacing the Waggie with this?
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Old 17th November 2014, 09:15   #141
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

Mod Note : There are several spelling & grammatical errors in your posts. This negatively affects the forum experience for other readers.

Kindly ensure that you proof-read your posts prior to submission. Also, it would be a good idea to use spell-checkers.

Last edited by GTO : 18th November 2014 at 09:08.
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Old 17th November 2014, 10:12   #142
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

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Originally Posted by Sheel View Post


Parting with the T-Jet or replacing the Waggie with this?
As of now just window shopping. But the lack of a Fiat service center here has made me start thinking. My initial plan was to hold on to the TJet for a few years, and then upgrade to a smallish luxury SUV in the next few years. That is the only thing that is keeping me away from going for a similar segment car. But we just can't stop thinking wheels, can we?

Have you test driven the AWD Duster?

The Wagon R stays as of now. It is abuse friendly and the drivers these days do not drive them very carefully, as you will appreciate.
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Old 17th November 2014, 10:49   #143
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

Precisely the reason the Yeti is on classified. Skoda has shut shop at Siliguri.

I haven't driven the AWD. The Duster is a good package. Save for interiors at that price point and tire/wind noise. Brakes/GC is very good. Feels car like to drive.

After moving away from a sedan, you will appreciate that, now, you don't have to scan the road surface always and neither have to steer away from potholes. Much less fatigue/stress free driving.
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Old 17th November 2014, 12:28   #144
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

Hi
I'm unable to find the pdf catalogue for the Duster AWD. Could someone help me?

The Reps specifically mentioned ESP is only available on the top end version. Whereas on this thread the specification table mentions its standard on both variants.

The price difference (after discount) is around Rs. 2 lakhs between the variants. Most features not available on the RxL can be lived without on , except front passenger airbag. While its compelling to have one, I wonder if the huge difference is really worth it.

Every other feature can be retrofitted with after-market substitutes, but not the airbag.

Though I'm not keen on the AWD feature, the gear ratios & the independent rear suspension (semi independent, as the reps would like to call it), make for a strong consideration.

What would be the evident difference between ride quality on the Torsion bar & the I.R.S.?

Considering the 2WD, with 2 airbags is priced a good Rs. 1 lakh lesser than AWD, how much of repentance would one have for not having gone with the AWD instead?

Will the Gurus please elaborate?

Thanks :-)
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Old 17th November 2014, 18:23   #145
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by DessertOnWheels View Post
Hi
I'm unable to find the pdf catalogue for the Duster AWD. Could someone help me?
=====
Will the Gurus please elaborate?

Thanks :-)
Exactly the kind of thoughts i had on my mind before 2 hours back. Went to the showroom to book the RXL+ 85PS variant and came out with AWD RXL instead. All in all, we had about 10-15 hrs of conversation among friends and family debating on the variant to be selected.

Had to compromise on the Passenger airbag but wanted the independent suspension, so had to back off. The RxZ variant on the other hand was way above my budget.

BTW..which one do you rate higher in terms of safety among the two - ESP & ASR or Airbags?
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Old 17th November 2014, 18:44   #146
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

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Originally Posted by johy View Post
The Amazon Green that I seem to like in the Duster. I looked at a few pictures here (Renault Duster AWD launched at Rs. 11.89 lakh (pg. 15))

But this one looks like the normal Woodland brown touched up with some green paint!

Also, is climate control present on the AWD. The discounts at this point seem good, though it is still quite expensive? Is is not?
Yes, Amazon green under white light looks exactly like woodland brown. But in Natural light looks green and an amazing one at that. Wouldn't be happier with any other colour on duster

@ micrographics : Then Service center it is. Please show it to them and take them on a test drive. It's working fine for me and goes upto 29.9 in real time

Quote:
Originally Posted by DessertOnWheels View Post
Hi
The Reps specifically mentioned ESP is only available on the top end version. Whereas on this thread the specification table mentions its standard on both variants.
ESP is available as standard on both the AWD versions. IMO RXL is vfm as you miss out on Media Nav, Cruise control/Speed limiter, Alloys and Passenger side Airbag. unless Cruise/Passenger airbag is important to you

Quote:
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BTW..which one do you rate higher in terms of safety among the two - ESP & ASR or Airbags?
I would definitely recommend the AWD over 2WD as the suspension, Clutch and gear ratios make a huge impact on driveability, even if you don't need 4x4 function at all. 2WD clutch was too strong even after the corrections made and 110PS was literally dead between 1250 to 1750 RPM range. Those glitches has been removed in AWD and drives like a petrol car except for the slight turbo boost you feel in 2,3,4 th gears. regarding the safety features, typically i would pick both. If i had to choose one among them, it has to be airbags which can save you 10/10 times as opposed to ESP which may save you 6/10 times (impact on stationary vehicle for eg)

Last edited by GTO : 18th November 2014 at 09:09. Reason: Quoted post deleted
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Old 17th November 2014, 18:51   #147
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Exactly the kind of thoughts i had on my mind Went to the showroom to book the RXL+ 85PS variant and came out with AWD RXL instead.

BTW..which one do you rate higher in terms of safety among the two - ESP & ASR or Airbags?
Congrats on your thoughtful purchase. I'm sure you'll also share your experiences with prospective Duster buyers.

Any particular reason to reject the 85PS?

Frankly, wanted to know about ESP to be sure I'm not being bluffed (or maybe the reps weren't too sure about it). I'd rate the twin airbags as priority to ESP. I believe it kicks in & is useful during offroading & high speed cornering, especially in slippery conditions. Nevertheless, its a safety feature & counts.

My imaginary worry now is about my purchasing the AWD RXL & then Renault introducing twin airbags in the impending version.

But again, congrats & wish you thousands of happy miles on the unassuming little beast :-)
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Old 17th November 2014, 19:47   #148
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Default Re: Renault Duster AWD : Official Review

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Originally Posted by DessertOnWheels View Post
Congrats on your thoughtful purchase. I'm sure you'll also share your experiences with prospective Duster buyers.

Any particular reason to reject the 85PS?

My imaginary worry now is about my purchasing the AWD RXL & then Renault introducing twin airbags in the impending version.

But again, congrats & wish you thousands of happy miles on the unassuming little beast :-)
No reasons I can put on the paper to reject the 85PS. Infact, I went to showroom to book a 85PS model.

Well, we can't really predict the manufacturer's. In all probability there would be an AWD adventure edition which would be brought with the twin airbag option. Invariably that's what manufacturers do 6 months after product launch. But can you wait for that long?


On my thoughts about ESP vs Airbags, please have a look at the google maps image herein.

I have been through an accident when my car went off the tarmac and I hit an electric pole which was on the pedestrian footpath. It was a rainy day and if it wasn't for that accident, I wouldn't be here on this thread reading about AWD. Because of the lack of ESP, my car lost traction and it hit an electric pole and the airbags deployed. I was saved because of the airbags but wonder if I would have been in that situation if the ESP was available in my earlier vehicle.
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Old 18th November 2014, 10:15   #149
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Exactly the kind of thoughts i had on my mind before 2 hours back. Went to the showroom to book the RXL+ 85PS variant and came out with AWD RXL instead. All in all, we had about 10-15 hrs of conversation among friends and family debating on the variant to be selected.

Had to compromise on the Passenger airbag but wanted the independent suspension, so had to back off. The RxZ variant on the other hand was way above my budget.

BTW..which one do you rate higher in terms of safety among the two - ESP & ASR or Airbags?
Congrats on your purchase!!!, it will be very helpful if you could provide a breakdown of the price.
Which dealer did you buy the vehicle from? I am in the market and have almost zeroed down on the 85ps Rxl+ and i see that you too where in the same boat before purchasing AWD Rxl. What made you take the plunge?

Thanks a lot in advance
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Old 18th November 2014, 11:15   #150
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Congrats on your purchase!!!, it will be very helpful if you could provide a breakdown of the price.
Which dealer did you buy the vehicle from? I am in the market and have almost zeroed down on the 85ps Rxl+ and i see that you too where in the same boat before purchasing AWD Rxl. What made you take the plunge?

Thanks a lot in advance
The Ex-Showroom price was 11.29 + 14% Road Tax + 9.9K Handling charges. I am getting insurance from my own source. Not much of freebies.

Well as I have said earlier, the suspension setup, the availability of the safety kit sealed the deal in the favour of AWD.
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