Ed’s take: The Terrano’s interior get an upgrade in quality and even the fit and finish of most of the materials is good. However, there is some plastic which will remind you of the Duster.
The interiors of the Terrano have revamped if you are thinking to compare it to the Duster. The instrument panel skeleton is the same, but a major revival has happened. The musix system, the air-con vents and even the steering wheel has been replaced on the Terrano. The quality of the replaced bits is better, however the other parts have the same styling. The Terrano is also available with the option of six-inch touchscreen infotainment system and also steering mounted audio controls too.
The interior quality is a lot similar to the Duster, and when you are seated behind you do not feel much of a difference between the Renault and Nissan badge even existing. The seats are large and comfortable. The Terrano has spacious interiors and even the seats are comfortable for long journeys. There is space for four people and even the boot is large for a weekend getaway.
Ed’s take:The Terrano comes with three engine variants, one is a petrol and other two are diesels. The pick of the lot is the 1.5-litre diesel with 108bhp.
1.5-litre diesel, 108bhp:
This engine comes mated to a six-speed manual transmission. This engine has the typical diesel clatter and it is wee bit louder than one’s liking. However, Nissan has worked on the insulation and there isn’t much intrusion of sound into the cabin. The power delivery is fairly linear, however there is some amount of turbo lag present in it. The Terrano’s power is decent and it does a good job when it comes performance and even fuel efficiency. The sixth gear is tall and it makes it easy to cruise on the highway. The six speed manual transmission feels rubbery to shift.
1.5-litre diesel, 83bhp:
The 83bhp 1.5-litre diesel comes mated to a five-speed manual transmission. This is the same engine block, with a detuned engine. However the power delivery is linear and one doesn’t feel much of a turbo lag. It is this oil burner that is perfect for city driving. You do not even have to downshift most of the times to overtake or even potter around in city conditions. The five-speed box is also more slick than the six-speed that feels a bit rubbery. The shifts are also a lot more smooth and short.
1.6-litre petrol, 102bhp:
The 1.6-litre petrol produces about 102bhp of power and has low NVH like any other petrol engine. Most of the power is developed in higher rpm, however the engine feels to be tuned for better fuel economy. The petrol motor needs some extra pushing to extract some good performance out of it. The engine is extremely quiet, however one needs to downshift to overtake.
Ed’s take:The 83bhp has a softer rear and the focus is more towards better ride, however the 108bhp is more fun to drive with a stiffer set-up for the springs.
The handling of the Terrano is good and the good thing is there isn’t much body roll despite the ground clearance of 205mm. The 83bhp has a softer rear and it can be felt while taking corners. The steering response is a bit vague and it isn’t as light as other Nissan’s are. We do miss that.
The ride on the Terrano is sorted and pliant. The underpinnings of the Terrano do a good job of ironing out most of the road bumps and shocks. The ride is good even when you drive on bad roads. The steering feedback is vague and doesn’t feel like Nissan, which is generally extremely light to use.
It is only the interiors of the Duster that failed to appeal us. The plastic quality isn’t up to the mark, even though the fit and finish is decent. The space in the Duster is just phenomenal, with large and supportive seats.
The interior quality on the Duster is decent. It isn’t phenomenal for its price, but it is good enough. The overall fit and finish of the plastics is good, but it is the feel that doesn’t impress. Even the inside has been designed ergonomically. The black and beige interiors look good and feel premium, as most of the Indians consider beige to be superior over black or grey.
There is loads of space in the front row and the Duster doesn’t feel cramped. The seating is a bit low, but the view is good as the overall visibility of the car is good. The support offered by the seats is good for the back and the thigh. Move into the second row and there will be no disappointment with the space for your knee and head. The space is immense and so is the thigh support. Even the boot is large for 4 people’s luggage. The Duster comes with a dealer fitment option of two additional seats forming the third row.
The Duster comes in three variants, RxE, RxL and RxZ. The latter two come with option packs as well. The RxE is the base model and it comes with basic features like black interiors, keyless entry, power windows. It misses out on airbags and also on ABS.
The RxL is the mid-model and it gets additional features like rear defogger and wiper, front fog lamps, trendy beige fabric seats, the centre console becomes glossy black instead of the charcoal black, electrically adjustable ORVMs, integrated music system with four speakers and USB connectivity, on board computer, glove box lamp and reading lamps being the major upgrades.
The RxZ is the top of the line version and it comes fully loaded with various bells and whistles like dual airbags, ABS, reverse parking sensor, driver seat reminder, body coloured door mirrors with satin, rear AC blower, leather wrapped steering wheel. These are the major add-ons, except for those that were already mentioned in the RxL.
With the Duster being a compact SUV, most of the buyers will prefer the 85bhp 1.5litre diesel engine. This engine has good drivability and sufficient torque to potter around in the city. There is no turbo lag either and it does make its case for a good buy.
The Duster comes with a 1.6-litre petrol engine that produces 102bhp of power at 5850rpm and a torque of 145Nm at 3750rpm. This is a four-cylinder that earlier powered the Logan. It comes mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The NVH levels are fairly refined and the engine isn’t noisy. The power delivery is linear and the shifts on the box are also good. For quick overtaking one has to downshift as the power is most available in the higher rev range. The ARAI mileage for the petrol version of the Duster is 13.4kmpl.
Duster comes with two power ratings in the diesel variant. One is 85bhp and the other is 108bhp. The 84bhp is available on the RxE and RxL trim levels. This is the same engine that powers the Nissan Sunny as well. The NVH (noise vibration and harshness) levels on the diesel Duster are quiet low and Renault has done a fabulous job on reducing the clatter. This version of the Duster produces 84 bhp at 3750rpm of power and 200Nm of torque at 1900rpm. The power delivery is good enough and the engine is fairly drivable even when in the city. Overtaking in the city is easy and most of the time a downshift is required. The 5-speed transmission is good enough and the shifts are positive. The ARAI claimed fuel efficiency of the 84bhp Duster is 20.64kmpl.
The 108bhp of the Duster is available only with RxL and RxZ trim levels. This engine produces 108bhp of power at 3900rpm and a maximum torque of 248Nm at an engine speed of 2250rpm. The refinement level of the engine is the same, as the lower powered diesel engine, and there is no clatter drama. Once you pass 1800rpm, there is sufficient power to lug around the town. For better utilization of power, this engine comes mated to a 6-speed manual box than a 5-speed that powers the de-tuned version of this K9K engine. The shifts on this 6-speed manual box are also smooth and positive. However, there is a drop in fuel economy by ARAI standards to 19.1kmpl. On the highway, the sixth-gear will help to increase the fuel efficiency.
The Duster excels in the ride and handling department. It doesn’t just have a well sorted ride, but even the handling is good for its size and ground clearance. So, the Duster is makes a strong case for itself.
The Duster is based on the Logan platform and so it gets independent McPherson strut with coil springs & anti-roll bar at its front and torsion beam axle with coil springs & anti-roll bar at its rear. The ride of the Duster is fairly supple. All the road shocks are absorbed by the utility vehicle and the occupants get a smooth ride. The ride is similar even at higher speeds.
The handling of the Duster is similar to that of a sedan. It can be chucked around corners and its chassis responds well. Despite the high ground clearance the handling characteristics of the Duster are good. The steering wheel also is light at low speeds and weighs up well as the vehicle gathers speed.
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