One of the best small cars money can buy, the Dacia Sandero has proven to be as popular with automotive critics as it is with motorists. That’s not surprising considering how affordable it is, while putting many in its class to shame. For a start, it’s roomier, more comfortable and just as practical as many, much more expensive city cars.
There are five trim levels to choose from, beginning with the well-specified Essential and ending with the aptly named Stepway Prestige. And there are plenty of exciting colours available, including Fusion Red, Iron Blue and Desert Orange.
A practical, roomy supermini
Thanks to its five-door body – standard across all trim levels, the Dacia Sandero provides easy access for rear-seated travellers. Take a look inside and you’ll soon notice there’s more space than you might have anticipated. Certainly, the third-generation model benefits from a larger platform, providing greater occupancy and luggage capacity than ever. The cabin is replete with useful stowage cubbies, while a class-competitive 328-litre boot increases to 1,108 litres once 60/40 split-folding rear seats are dropped.
The Dacia runs on a 1.0-litre petrol and/or liquid petroleum gas (LPG) engine. It’s a 90bhp petrol unit which is installed as standard, producing CO2 emissions of 120g/km and returning 5.3 L/100 km. The most balanced option is a 100bhp bi-fuel engine (using both petrol and LPG). This produces emissions as low as 109g/km (LPG mode) and returns a 5.4 L/100 km figure (petrol mode). It delivers optimal power too: 0-100 km/h in 11.6 seconds.
Entry-level Essential trims come well-appointed, with attractive Y-shaped LED signature lights and automatic LED daytime running lights, for example. On the inside, an AM/FM tuner and DAB digital radio provide plenty of audio entertainment options, while Bluetooth connectivity allows music streaming and hands-free telephony. The Dacia features several essential driver aids too, such as Hill-Start Assist, which provides the driver with complete control of the vehicle when starting the engine on an incline.