The car that we have driven is a top-of-the-line RXZ variant. It gets climate control, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatible infotainment system with a 6.9-inch display, reverse camera, height adjustment for the driver’s seat, start-stop technology, cruise control, audio switches on the steering column and two 12V sockets at both ends of the cabin. Now on paper, this is the minimum standard expected from a car in this part of the market, which the Duster meets….somewhat.
Where the Duster’s exterior design has stood the test of time and looks good even today, the same cannot be said for the cabin. The feature list, as we said earlier, is minimum standard but how it has been packaged shows the age of the car. The quality of plastics used all around is tough and hard-wearing and feels well behind in terms of what the competition offers.
Equally a notch down is the touchscreen system which is the same one used on the Kwid and Triber. This is fine in their segments but here with the competition offering connected car technology and more connectivity options, it is in desperate need of an upgrade. The ergonomics and practicality too are dated with odd things like only a single step for the driver’s seat height adjustment, driver armrest blocking access when lowered, no pockets on the rear doors and an odd placement for both front occupant window controls.
The Duster claws back an advantage in terms of a large glass area, wide second-row seats as well as ample headroom all around. The front seats are equally impressive with good side bolstering and under-thigh support. The 475-litre boot is easy to access and can be expanded significantly with the rear seats folded down.