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Test: Dacia Sandero, when the “low-cost” becomes very generous!

For its incredible starting price of € 8,990, it must be said that it really does not offer much this Sandero. On the outside, there is only one choice of paint, the bumpers are black plastic and there is not even a hubcap. As for the interior, there is only the bare minimum: seats, a steering wheel and that’s practically everything! In short, we are really in the low-cost, impossible to hide it… But as soon as we move towards a slightly higher finish, things become (much) more enticing.

Smart presentation

Dacia has really taken care of the general presentation of its new Sandero. With a body color that covers it completely, the styling of this Dacia is almost… attractive! Its daytime running lights which cross the entire headlight and extend in a “chrome” line on the grille even give it a certain character. While its design is not unpleasant to look at, Dacia has not forgotten to make some very smart compromises to cut costs. The rims, for example, are not made of alloy, but of sheet metal. But they are cut to perfectly match the shape of the hubcaps. Inside, the finding is similar. The general presentation is pleasant. Unfortunately, the first contact with a plastic or the manipulation of a ventilation reminds that we had to make budget cuts somewhere. But when you take a look at the final bill, you quickly forgive it.

Full option low-cost

It must be said: the beast we had for this test was full option! Well, it’s still a Dacia, so the price of additional equipment is also low-cost. Conclusion: this car in comfort pack equipped with the “big” 90 hp engine and practically all the options is displayed at 14,760 €. Of course, this is moving away from the base price, but it is a price that can still be described as aggressive. Because today, for less than 15,000 €, we do not find many new cars …

Ultra practical!

Not content with being particularly affordable, this Sandero also offers smart and very practical layouts! We start with the dashboard which directly integrates a smartphone holder with its USB socket installed just behind. We can also mention the multiple hooks located in the trunk and at the foot of the passenger seat. We bet that a good part of the clientele largely prefers this kind of practical attention rather than a series of sensors that allow a car to park on its own?

Pleasant everyday

Inexpensive and practical, the Sandero also handles very well on the road. And for good reason, it shares its platform with the very latest generation of Clio. The use of this modern chassis results in an extremely healthy vehicle, very gradually understeer. If we can hardly speak of dynamism at the wheel all the same, we must recognize that a certain comfort is at the rendezvous. The not always smooth terrain of Belgian roads is well absorbed by the suspension. Wind and rolling noises are certainly audible, but light and not very disturbing on a daily basis. For a journey of more than 1,000 km, however, they can become very present, we agree … The small 3-cylinder 999 cm³ is, meanwhile, discreet in the cabin. If you listen carefully, you just sometimes hear the whistle of the turbo, which is far from unpleasant.

An excellent engine

In addition, this engine fulfills its functions wonderfully! Coupleux, it allows to fit easily in the traffic and offers nice raises. Again, it doesn’t offer dynamic performance! But it gives a real comfort of use. As for its consumption, it is under control. The on-board computer showed 6.1 l / 100 km after our test, which remains reasonable for a turbo petrol car of this size.

Our verdict

If the Stepway version of the Sandero had already convinced us, the 5-door sedan drives the point home a little more. For less than € 15,000, all inclusive, Dacia offers a car equipped with all the necessary equipment, practical and even fun to drive! We really wonder what we could (still) ask him more?

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