RAC Cars News


Dacia Duster Rust Concerns

By raccars Published

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Right hand drive Dacia Dusters, up to now built at Renault-Nissan's Indian plant in Chennai, are being produced in Europe at Romania's Pitesti Dacia factory. This plant is already used to make left hand driver Dusters. While Dacia denies the concerns, it is believed that the move is the result of a number of reports of rust on right hand drive Dusters.

Dacia claims that moving production of the right hand drive Duster to Europe is economically and logistically more efficient for the company, and will reduce the lead time on the car, from eight weeks to three or four. However, there have been 90 cases of rust reported on right hand drive Dusters since June this year. Dacia asserts that it has enacted a 'robust fix' for the issue, which it was made aware of early in 2014. The company's response included using its website to contact customers and inspecting the relevant vehicles, performing any necessary repairs free of charge, with customers getting the use of courtesy cars while work is being carried out. All affected cars which have received repairs get their paintwork and corrosion warranties extended by a year.

Since attending to the problem, the owners of 161 Dusters have been in touch with Dacia. Seventy one of these had questions about the problem, while 90 reported rust on their cars. However, 20,000 Dusters have been sold in the UK since the car was launched in summer 2012, so the complaints comprise only a tiny fraction of owners. Only cars delivered from January 2013 to August 2014 are affected by the fault.

Dacia has explained that inconsistencies in the painting process were found in a small number of the cars built at the Chennai factory, leading to surface corrosion appearing around door sills and bonnet closures. As only limited numbers of vehicles were affected, no recall notice has been issued. No other models of Dacia are affected, nor is any other car produced in the Chennai facility, which is co-owned by Nissan.

The Duster is a compact SUV built upon the firm's B0 Logan platform. It comes in two or four wheel drive variants, the latter equipped with an all wheel drive system by Nissan, allowing three driving modes. The car displays a competence off road that's at odds with its economy price tag and which has seen it well received by the auto press and sell very well internationally for Dacia.

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