The new Renault Sandero should be the car that really puts Renault on the map in South Africa. It should sell in droves. It is good looking, handles nicely, is guaranteed for 5 years and is very affordable.
The Sandero is a budget small family car with a generous boot.
In Dynamique guise it has all the bells and whistles and is really good value for money.
All new Sanderos come with a full suite of electronic safety aids, even hill start assist, front airbags and ISO childseat anchors. They also all have central locking, electric front windows, radio fingertip controls, Bluetooth and power steering.
The top model of the new Sandero adds airconditioning, cruise control, onboard computer, rear electric windows, 2 more airbags and foglamps.
In a nutshell, the new Sandero is well equipped.
I found the seats comfortable. The fabric looks and feels good and appears to be durable. The interior is functional, smart and seems well put together. Five adults can fit in, if for shortish distances. It also has a large boot.
The multi-function steering wheel feels good and the steering is good for its class and actually gives you feedback.
The engine is a new generation turbo petrol delivering 66kW and 135Nm of torque. Do not worry that it is a 3 cylinder 900cc unit. It has a very low inertia turbo combined with Variable Valve Timing which results in exceptional performance. All the manufacturers are going in this direction. It felt more powerful to me than a typical German 1.2 turbodiesel engine. I found it to be willing and well suited to the Sandero.
Handling and roadholding is good and at least matches its competition. It is based on the same platform as the fourth generation Clio so inherits the good road manners of its sibling.
The first three gears are quite close, giving you lots of grunt when you need it, but the last two are designed for the open road and good economy.
Renault claims a mixed cycle fuel consumption of 5.2 litre per 100km. This is very optimistic. Expect between 6 and 7 l/100km. Top speed is 175km/h and you will get to 100km/h in just over 11 seconds.
Interior space and a big boot
Great price, exceptional value
Good looks, modern design
Expansive standard equipment list
I think the new Sandero has shifted the goalposts in the affordable small car market. It is a very good affordable small car with space to seat 4 adults in comfort. You get a lot of car for your money.
It should make a good business car, especially considering the five year warranty.
Price as tested: R141 500. The base model Expression is R123 900 (R133 900 with aircon).
Warranty is a very good 5 years or 150 000 and the service plan is for 2 years or 30 000km.
Also look at the Toyota Etios, Volkswagen Polo Vivo and Ford Figo.