With a soft rand, threatening interest rate hikes and an economy dragging its heels, affordability and value have become key parameters for anyone considering the purchase of a new car. And yet, new car buyers also want safety, luxury, convenience and performance. Enter the new, second-generation Renault Sandero - a car that promises to offer the best of both worlds. By DEON SCHOEMAN.
The Renault Sandero can trace its roots back to Romanian brand Dacia, which started out in the mid-1960s, producing various Renault-based models under licence from the French automaker.
Renault eventually acquired Dacia, and the first-generation Dacia Sandero, featuring modern engineering and Renault technology, became a champion of affordable motoring in Europe because of its accessible pricing, high safety standards and decent comfort and convenience features.
For its South African debut in 2009, the Sandero ditched its Dacia badge for a Renault diamond, and was assembled by Alliance partner Nissan at the Nissan SA plant in Rosslyn. The Sandero soon found a ready market among budget-conscious motorists seeking a reliable, affordable and modern hatchback that was also safe and economical.
But let's face it: the Sandero wasn't the sexiest or most advanced hatchback around, especially when compared to...