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Old 26th January 2014, 21:02   #1
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Default My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Dear BHPians, this is my first time here on TEAM-BHP although I have been visiting this site prior to owning a car so I do apologize in advance for any errors in my report.
I would start of the ownership report with a small incident which prompted my dad to make the very important decision of purchasing a vehicle in India.

We are NRI’s and have been living in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for the past 18 years (still maintaining that status with regular visits). And for all these years we have been visiting India annually in every summer vacation. Come 2010 and I finished my high school over there and following suit like most expatriates who live in the gulf was returning to India for my undergraduate studies. My college gift was a TVS wego for regular commute and occasional use for my dad who visits us 4 times a year. 3 years pass and one fine day we were planning on a family dinner like we always did. So its me and my younger brother on the bike and dad, mom and sis in an auto. We always used to commute like this since we got here and were always happy although I used to pester dad to buy a car so that we could travel in comfort.

So this one evening my dad was waiting for an auto to come buy and suddenly our neighbor who owns an XUV steps right in front and offers us a ride with their driver, my dad refused and we went along the usual way in the auto. At the dinner table in the restaurant my dad whispers to me “Beta ab shayad gadi khareed lena hi accha hai” (Son I think its high time we buy a car). Here starts the story of exploring vehicles for the first time in India.

Requirements: Hyderabad is a crowded city with narrow roads. I’ve always admired small hatchbacks and so did we want one.

Contenders : Even Before arriving in India I was a huge fan of the Hyundai i20. This car used to blow my mind because of its space and huge feature list. But nevertheless price was also a constraint. When the FORD FIGO was launched I went gaga over it right when I saw it for the first time it was launched. I said right away to my dad that the FIGO is gonna be our new family car and so did he oblige. Till then I only had a two wheeler license so I had to wait for a month to get my 4 wheeler license.

I Visited Fortune Ford showroom in Tolichowki, Hyderabad for my first experience with the FIGO. A Salesperson immediately approached and explained all the details regarding the car and even offered a test drive which I refused because I was a learner till then. The car itself is marvelous and truly as mentioned here in TEAM-BHP “A value for money car”. We were looking for a Diesel Variant although our usage for very much less, my dad was conscious about the fuel pricing in india ! The price quoted then was around 7 lacs on road Titanium Variant with 10K discount for NRI’s included. I informed my dad about this car and he said if the family agrees then we shall proceed with it.

Then comes November’12 when I show my dad on Renault’s Website the then recently launched DUSTER. Coincidentally the whole family was present in front of the laptop and liked the car very much. My dad returned back after his vacation to the gulf and one day I get a call from him where he said “I think you should go have a look at the DUSTER at the showroom personally”. In a day or two I took my friend along to see the car.
Words can’t express the fact that this was the starting of the worst experience I was ever going to have with Renault, Banjara Hills. Neither a salesperson showed up nor anybody in the showroom approached us. They never even cared that a customer is present there and is interested in the car they had.

Booking Experience: Nevertheless I had to make some contacts and get the details of the car which I did and shared with my dad. After some days of thinking my dad finally approved and told me to make the booking. I called up my neighbor who had contacts at Renault and went there to make the booking. After a lot of negotiating with the home department for the livery of the car we came to a selection of SILVER color for the DUSTER and paid up 50K booking amount and were given a waiting period of 5 months no less than that, this was no problem to me cuz my dad wanted some time to arrange funds for the quoted 12.5L price tag for the 85HP RXL Option pack.
After 3 months of no contact with the showroom I thought it was high time I contacted them about the status of our car. Every time I called them up they would tell me it still is in waiting period. Nevertheless February’13 arrives and I personally visit Renault for a direct talk to the Branch Manager about the status of the car, He says that they had a Silver duster in stock . Voila ! I immediately tell him that I will make the payment in a couple of days which I did and that car was allotted to me. They give me a 1st March’13 delivery.

Delivery Day: Before proceeding I would like to tell you guys that in this purchase not a single call was made by Renault Showroom to us, not even for informing us that the car was ready for delivery that day. From Nov’12 to Mar’13 every single time only I have been contacting them for my needs. I myself made the call and reached the showroom at around 5:30 pm in the evening.

I Had went there with my bro, sis, uncle and neighbor because this was the first time for us ever buying a car in India. They bought the car up to the delivery area and I inspected the car as suggested by TEAM-BHP. And noted the odo reading to be 40 kms, got an explanation for that and was no issues to me.

Here starts the interesting part, it seems that Renault has a policy that only after a customer has inspected the car that they start the procedure of temporary registration and I thought this was a good thing although it took a lot of time. I was explained only a few features about the car and I made sure I got to know about the new MEDIA NAV (will come to this story shortly). Finally after all the paperwork had been completed my uncle who has experience in car showrooms asked the salesperson to tally the pricelist for the bills and receipts that were given to me. And there came a difference of around 346 Rs/- I fairly remember. When inquired none of the showroom people could answer this question! After a lot of research it was found out that online temporary registration fee cost us that amount and hence no receipt of that. After a heated up argument by my uncle I finally took delivery of the vehicle which was a February’13 manufactured vehicle as mentioned on the rear window of the vehicle.

PRICES STORY: There was a price hike once and the showroom guys told me that I will have to shell out 30K more so that comes up to 12.8L. Dad didn’t mind much. The second price hike was very much unique or must I say keeping us in the dark! Just a week before delivery when I went for payment the showroom guys told me that Renault Has stopped production of the 85HP RXL option pack instead it comes with MEDIA NAV as standard with it and I will have to pay 20K more !! Whoa ! This was unacceptable when I spoke to my dad he was like” This is the generation of high tech cars and there is nothing wrong with us getting a car with touch screen navigation display!, so go ahead and get that vehicle”. So we did have to shell out 50K more from the time of booking. I even asked about price protection policy once I heard the manager saying. He said it was applicable only if I had paid the full amount immediately after booking. Is this true?

Pre Price Hike (at the time of booking i.e., mid december)

Ex Showroom- 1048923
Road tax- 147349
Insurance- 39872
Essential kit- 4000
L&F Charges- don’t remember
Registraion-3k something

TOTAL- 12,50,134/-

Price for the car I got (after price hike and inclusion of MEDIA NAV Variant)

Ex Showroom- 1089400
Road tax- 153016
Insurance-43909
Essential Kit-4000
L&F- 9990
Registration-3500

TOTAL- 13,03,815/- (absolutely no discount or freebies whatsoever)


Experience with the car- Till date i.e., 26th January’14 the car has run just 3300 kms. As I mentioned earlier our usage was not that much. We mostly use our car for the 60km airport run (to and fro).
The main advantage of the car is its ride. It is really COMFORTABLE, it rides over potholes like a feather. Truly Renault has done a good job at this.

Pros-
-Spacious 5 seater, excellent for a medium sized family
-High seating gives a commanding position
-Boot space is great for those Airport Runs and monthly vacations
-decent mileage
-good for city runs
-head turner for sure
-gear changes are precise and slot well
-twin 12V socket (one in front and one behind the passenger seats)
-Excellent ride quality
-Great ground clearance, nothing to worry about underbody scraping
-good speakers for the music system
-A frugal, workhorse engine which is tried and tested by our famous cab drivers (K9K all the way)

Cons-
-Glaringly evident turbo lag below 1800-2000 RPM
-I hate the MID Display especially for the fuel meter which takes ages to update after a fill up
-always have to shift down to first gear after recovering a speed hump. Irritating this one
-Accelerator input is slow
-Clutch is too hard for city driving conditions
-Climate control is missed out but I can do without it
-No Driver side armrest and footrest as well
-I feel the headlights to be underpowered
-Accessories are too expensive. Don’t know about aftermarket stuff (need expert advice please)
-Using the navigation is a nightmare; it doesn’t have the famous landmarks and areas at all
-Air conditioner is better suited at position 3 at startup and later on 2 for continuous usage
-Diesel clatter can be heard inside the cabin and can get irritating at high speeds

Service:
Got my first free service done and already claimed a broken Airbag sensor unit under warranty. The light was up on my dash for several days and they cleared it up by troubleshooting but when it again appeared I had to replace the entire unit which cost about 7K but was under warranty so no problems.
Other than that no problems at all. Also got to do a free test drive of the Renault Fluence and indeed thats a great car !
Renault recently conducted a free check-up camp at its newly inaugurated Service Station at Madhapur, Hyderabad. They had some entertainment programs up for grabs and also had a driver’s presentation where they highlighted important tips for owners to take care of their cars. Good move by Renault.

Driving Experience
The Car Drives smooth. I've been in an XUV500 which is a proper Indian SUV and i can say that my Duster has a better ride quality IMO (No offence XUV owners).
-Exterior Styling is modern and i have no complaints regarding exterior styling.
-I wish Renault had put some more money on Interior Styling. Although i wouldn't complain but throwing in some design attributes in the center console and addition of a hand rest would have been a great idea.
-Built quality is average, the plastics feel a bit tacky and slippery when rubbed against.
-Interior Space is mind blowing. The rear seat passengers will enjoy every bit of the journey. Front seats offer good support and are spacious for a mid sized adult.
-Air Conditioner has to be operated at or above level 2 always. A bit of a problem during summer, as cooling effect takes time.
-Engine performance is totally great. At highways drivers will enjoy this car. In the city the clutch pedal might give some problems as its way too hard.
-Turbo lag is evident as i mentioned before. but the engine comes to power soon and that helps for lesser gear shifts.
-Gearshifts are smooth and slot in the exact place, but the response is slow.
-Steering in the city as well as the highway is no problem at all, it has the perfect weight and response.
-Braking is adequate, although i would have preferred rear discs as well. But the brakes do their job.
-I would have wanted some more punch in the headlights. The high beam is not adequate for me. After market suggestions anyone ?
-rear view mirror hampers the view. I would recommend a parking camera. but for those with parking sensors, no need to worry !
-Side view mirrors are perfect and i like the knob just below the hand brake. gives me ease of operation while sitting in the right position and adjusting it.

BHPians i need your expertise in aftermarket sales in hyderabad for the following accessories
- Car Body Cover
- Parking Camera ( anyone tried to just buy a camera and incorporate it with the MEDIA NAV Display ?)
- Seat Covers
- Door protectors
- Hand rest
- powerful headlight bulbs
and LED interior mood lighting

Pictures taken from my Smartphone, Sorry for the bad quality !
Thanks and hope you guys enjoy.

Looks like a Bull Frog from Behind or Thats what i like to call it !

My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150238.jpg

Rear Seat is a jolly place to be for my passengers. Just Because im kind of short !
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150257.jpg

Cockpit view
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150307.jpg

Media Nav Display. Can do with or without Case
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150327.jpg

As i mentioned it takes time to get accustomed with the complicated Navigation System.
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150341.jpg

Steering is of the Perfect size and grips well
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150356.jpg

My dad loves the ribbon, hence its been 10 months and starting to turn blackish
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150433.jpg

Boot Space eats up my Airport Trip Luggage. Notice the Car Vacuum, a Must for Indian Conditions
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150617.jpg

I love this thing. Such an ease to operate while driving. Although most would prefer on the steering wheel, I like it this way
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150656.jpg

Instrument Cluster
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150724.jpg


My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150447.jpg

Good Design input here from Renault. Easy grab handle for the boot
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150636.jpg

Passengers view of the cabin
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150627.jpg

I actually prefer the manual knobs for A/C. I find Climate Control Complicated. Also Note the switch for parking sensors
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150817.jpg

Footrest is sorely missed out. Notice the brake pedal which is out of proportion. Also the knob for headlight adjustment, Not much range
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150830.jpg

Engine bay, Neatly packed
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150902.jpg

Proudly reads, Renault-Nissan partnership. Notice the blue paint on the positive terminal. Sprayed upon by the servicing guys. Corrosion protection?
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150917.jpg

Headlights. Could have been brighter with a decent range
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150941.jpg


My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150538.jpg

Parking Sensors work just fine. It keeps me from buying a rear view camera kit.
My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation-20140201_150528.jpg

Last edited by AviationAFM777 : 14th February 2014 at 23:03. Reason: More information added as per instructions from moderator
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Old 15th February 2014, 16:41   #2
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Initial Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 17th February 2014, 09:50   #3
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Congrats on your new acquisition! It is such a sensible choice in Indian conditions - quite tough, good ground clearance & spacious. This is a vehicle I wouldn't mind owning (I prefer the looks of the Terrano tho') but for the fact that they do not have an AT version - and I find those bulging wheel arches pretty inconvenient.
Wish you many happy and safe hours of motoring!
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Old 17th February 2014, 23:49   #4
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

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Originally Posted by wilful View Post
Congrats on your new acquisition! It is such a sensible choice in Indian conditions - quite tough, good ground clearance & spacious. This is a vehicle I wouldn't mind owning (I prefer the looks of the Terrano tho') but for the fact that they do not have an AT version - and I find those bulging wheel arches pretty inconvenient.
Wish you many happy and safe hours of motoring!
Thanks a lot ! Yes indeed about the ground clearance !
At first even i had second thoughts upon those wheel arches. but when experienced in traffic, you can negotiate well enough. I'm planning to install those plastic cladding's they recently showed us in the Auto expo of the Duster adventure edition.
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Old 18th February 2014, 19:55   #5
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

congrats on owning this wonderful machine ! Its my dream to own one. With the excise duty cut hope to have my dream fulfilled soon.

Happy Mile Crunching !
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Old 3rd March 2014, 19:55   #6
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Hi
Could you please tell me about the Satellite Navigation system of this car? How well does it work? Are there any issues?
Looks like you had a terrible time dealing with the dealer in Hyderabad.
Sudipto
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Old 4th March 2014, 09:00   #7
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Congrats. You said (and the title says) yours is a top end 85. And still you say turbo lag is bad? How is that? 85 has absolutely no lag. Am I missing some thing?
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Old 4th March 2014, 09:08   #8
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Congrats on the Duster and thanks for sharing a well balanced review. Yeah, a bit confused reading about the lag and 2nd gear. I thought only the 110 PS had this trait.

And I think its high time you get that 10 month old ribbon removed from the car. It looks very awkward and can leave marks on the paint.
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Old 9th March 2014, 19:23   #9
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

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Originally Posted by Sudipto-S-Team View Post
Hi
Could you please tell me about the Satellite Navigation system of this car? How well does it work? Are there any issues?
Looks like you had a terrible time dealing with the dealer in Hyderabad.
Sudipto
Hi Sudipto
The Navigation System in this car is manufactured by LG. As a moving map and for popular destinations it works just fine but when you start typing out addresses into the system it takes up only a few letters in areas which it recognizes then the letters are blocked out. This irritates me and takes time to get used to. Otherwise the system is perfectly accurate and works perfectly. Bluetooth takes a lot of time to connect when moving, so its better to have your phone connected while at standstill.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Congrats. You said (and the title says) yours is a top end 85. And still you say turbo lag is bad? How is that? 85 has absolutely no lag. Am I missing some thing?
After you engage second gear and press the accelerator and if you are at around a 1000 rpm, it takes time and when it gets around 1800 rpm there is a kick of power from the engine. this happens only in second gear, all the other gears have perfect timing
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Old 9th March 2014, 21:39   #10
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Default Re: My SilverDUST Experience: Renault Duster 85HP RXL Option pack with Navigation

Quote:
Originally Posted by AviationAFM777 View Post
After you engage second gear and press the accelerator and if you are at around a 1000 rpm, it takes time and when it gets around 1800 rpm there is a kick of power from the engine. this happens only in second gear, all the other gears have perfect timing
1000 is too low. I thought even in petrol engines we may go a bit higher than that before we up-shift. In 85 the turbo kicks in by around 1200-1300. Hence you should not feel the lag.

Last edited by ampere : 9th March 2014 at 21:52.
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