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Dacia Sandero

The independent definitive Dacia Sandero video review
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    FAMILY FRIENDLY WITH PRIMARK PRICING (some text hidden) SECTIONED_new_daciasandero_2021

    By Jonathan Crouch

    The third generation Dacia Sandero could very well completely change the way you think about budgeting for a new compact family car. Jonathan Crouch drives the improved version.

    Ten Second Reviewword count: 87

    Wouldn't it be good if the Dacia Sandero could feel properly modern as well as being properly cheap. Well, we're promised that this MK3 version is. Really modern that is. It still pretty cheap too - still the cheapest family car you could choose - but at the same time as being a far better quality hatch in this rejuvenated third generation form. If you're just about to buy a mainstream brand city car, supermini or family hatch, you need to stop right here and read on....

    Backgroundword count: 166

    From Renault's point of view, it was a great concept. Buy a struggling Romanian car brand using factories with cheap labour. Then take a last-generation Renault hatch design, freshen it up with modern styling and a different badge and sell it at the kind of super-cheap prices that all of these short-cuts could facilitate. So was born the Dacia Sandero in 2013, which was then - and still is now - by some margin Britain's most affordable compact family hatch. With the original version, lightly freshened in 2017, you very much got what you didn't pay for, but loyal owners didn't care. Some of us though, wondered whether this car's sales prospects wouldn't be considerably improved if just a fraction of that affordability could be sacrificed in favour of creating more modern, efficient engineering. In a cabin that didn't feel quite so much like a Bulgarian thrift store. The rather more palatable product we were picturing has arrived. And this is it, the rejuvenated MK3 model.

    Driving Experienceword count: 332

    Owners of the original Sandero model didn't care too much about drive dynamics - which is just as well because they weren't up to much. This MK4 model's stiffer, more sophisticated CMF-B platform means it can deliver a little bit more - and there's a better engine beneath the bonnet too. It's almost certain that your Sandero will come with a Renault-derived three cylinder 90hp TCe 90 petrol engine, which comes with 6-speed manual or automatic transmission. Acceleration is acceptable, with 0-62mph taking 11.7 seconds, to the accompaniment of a slightly off-beat feel that's unique to three-cylinder engines. You can also have a Sandero with much the same engine in TCe 100 Bi-Fuel LPG form if you fancy a more eco-minded route. In that Bi-Fuel version, with both the petrol and the LPG tanks filled, you'd have a range of over 800 miles. The final engine choice, available on plusher variants, is a perkier TCe 110 petrol turbo unit, which makes 62mph in 10 seconds and only comes with manual transmission. Built on a contemporary structure that's closely related to that of the current (rather than previous-generation) Renault Clio, the Sandero still majors on ride comfort like its predecessors, but this MK4 version's body movements are much better controlled and the car wanders far less over larger bumps. There's also more grip than you might expect, thanks to the wider track, lower stance and a fresh front axle fitted to this current design. Electric steering was introduced for this generation and the rack is light without much meaningful feedback, but it's precise and predictable enough for everyday driving, and the turning circle is usefully tight at 10.5 metres. The more modern underpinnings of this MK4 Sandero have made it a noticeably quieter car than before, which emphasises its improved refinement. The result is a supermini that often feels like a car from the next class up. Which is not bad considering that it's still priced alongside cars from the next class down.

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    Pictures (high res disabled)

    Statistics (subset of data only)






    Insurance group 1-50:



    CO2 (g/km):

    119 (TCe 90)

    125 (TCe 110)

    Max Speed (mph):

    115 (TCe 90)

    0-62 mph (s):

    11.7 (TCe 90)

    10 (TCe 110)

    Combined Mpg:

    45.6 (TCe 110)

    53.3 (TCe 90)

    Length (mm):


    Height (mm):


    Boot Capacity (l):


    Scoring (subset of scores)

    Category: Small Runabouts

    Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

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