Our cars: Dacia Sandero - January

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  • Filming the Sandero's final video update. The interior stood up well to daily use

    Filming the Sandero's final video update. The interior stood up well to daily use

  • Cup holder in the Sandero gets so warm, it caused trouble for Matt's iPhone

    Cup holder in the Sandero gets so warm, it caused trouble for Matt's iPhone

  • Sandero and Sandero Stepway seem to be holding value well in the used car market

    Sandero and Sandero Stepway seem to be holding value well in the used car market

  • The Sandero now has another award to its name

    The Sandero now has another award to its name

  • Speed alert warning bongs aren't always accurate but get seriously noisy

    Speed alert warning bongs aren't always accurate but get seriously noisy

  • Dacia's tax disc comes at a cost for the first time, but it's only £30

    Dacia's tax disc comes at a cost for the first time, but it's only £30

  • Sat nav has been keeping Matthew from picking up speeding points

    Sat nav has been keeping Matthew from picking up speeding points

  • Sandero is being fuel tested this week

    Sandero is being fuel tested this week

  • Interior mirror is distracting and unnecessary

    Interior mirror is distracting and unnecessary

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Dacia Sandero 0.9 TCe Laureate

Week ending January 31
Mileage 8345
Driven this week 100

Read the full Dacia Sandero review

I've sung the praises of the Sandero's heater before but I hadn't appreciated quite how effective it is. A colleague borrowed the Dacia for a couple of evenings and discovered that the heater was very good at warming her iPhone, too.

There's a neat little cubby hole directly in front of the cupholders that looks like the perfect spot for your mobile. Unfortunately, when you have the heater on maximum, this area gets really hot.

So hot, in fact, that the iPhone stops working and displays the message: 'Temperature - iPhone needs to cool down before you can use it’. I'll have to find somewhere cooler to store my phone.

By Matthew Burrow
Matthew.Burrow@whatcar.com

Week ending January 24
Mileage 8245
Driven this week 21

Read the full Dacia Sandero review

The Sandero and the Sandero Stepway account for just over half of all Dacias sold in the UK. In its first year on the UK market, Dacia sold 17,146 cars. The Sandero made up 5025 of these while the Sandero Stepway sold 3770.

Used examples are starting to trickle onto the market and first impressions suggest that the Sandero holds its value well. I found an 8000-mile 1.5 dCi Laureate with Medianav and alloy wheels for sale for £9490. That looks a bit keen considering the original list price would have been £10,590, but I'll keep an eye out to see how it performs.

By Matthew Burrow
Matthew.Burrow@whatcar.com

Week ending January 17
Mileage 8224
Driven this week 377

Read the full Dacia Sandero review

For the second year running the Sandero has been honoured at the What Car? Awards as the price point winner in the small car category. It was voted the best small car to buy for less than £12,000.

The practicality it offers is one of its main attractions. There's plenty of room for four adults and the boot is one of the biggest in the class. Throw in a starting price of £5995, a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty and it's no surprise that Dacia had another award to add to its collection.

By Matthew Burrow
Matthew.Burrow@whatcar.com

Week ending January 10
Mileage 7847
Driven this week 192

Read the full Dacia Sandero review

The Sandero’s touch-screen nav system is great. Straightforward to use, big icons that are easy to hit precisely on the move, and I particularly like the huge, clear images to show which lane you should be getting into.

However, I viewed all of this through a red mist the other day, after an hour of motorway driving spent listening to the camera alert noise. It’s not dissimilar to the classic submarine radar ping, and it becomes seriously agitated if you approach a camera over the speed limit, rising to a constant screech.

Given that the Sandero misread many of the variable speed limits on the M25, it was generally pinging unnecessarily.

It’s one of the most irritating noises I’ve encountered among the ever-more creative array of warning bongs employed on modern cars. Mercifully, it can be turned off and I
had a more peaceful return journey.

By Vicky Parrott
Vicky.Parrott@whatcar.com

Week ending January 3
Mileage 7655
Driven this week 120

Read the full Dacia Sandero review

The Dacia has been on the What Car? fleet for almost a year - we were reminded of this by the need to pop a new tax disc on the windscreen. Cheap motoring is the name of the game with the Sandero, so I was pleased to see that it costs just £30 a year in VED from the second year (it's free for the first year).

It's even better news for those buying the 1.5-litre diesel; with emissions of just 99g/km of CO2, it doesn't cost a penny in VED. The news isn't so good for buyers of the entry-level Access model, which is available with just the 1.2-litre petrol engine - they have to pay £120 to keep their Sandero on the road, having had to fork out the same in year one.

By Matthew Burrow
Matthew.Burrow@whatcar.com

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