Dacia Logan MCV 2017 Road Test

The 2017 Dacia Logan MCV, already Leeds favourite taxi, has been refreshed with a new 1.0 litre 3-cylinder 75PS SCe engine lifted from the Twingo and Smart and a raft of welcome improvements. The existing TCe 90 petrol and dCi 90 diesels continue.

From £6,995, it’s still Britain’s cheapest estate car, offering a 1,850mm (6 foot) load length and a luggage capacity of 1,680 litres loaded to the roof. Even with all seats occupied, the 1,120mm x 990mm load deck takes 573 litres under the cover. Cheapest diesel is the dCi 90 Ambiance, still at a reasonable £10,195 and now with air conditioning and a DAB radio as standard. An ‘emergency spare wheel’ is listed as a £100 option, but on our test car it was full size.

Dacia Logan MCV Headlight

The Logan gets a new front with double optic headlights and smart LED Daytime Running Lights standard across the range. The 2017 grille has a honeycomb design and there are sharper bumpers front and rear, with more prominent foglights.

Dacia Logan MCV Dash

Inside you’ll find smart satin-effect chrome finish on the air vent surrounds, trim strip and centre console fascia, poshing up the ambiance of the Ambiance trim level considerably. A new four-spoke steering wheel design has the horn push in the centre where you’d expect it to be instead of at the end of the indicator stalk. Lauréate versions have cruise control and speed limiter buttons on the wheel and a ‘Soft Feel’ authentic fake leather rim.

As on Sanderos and Stepways, front electric window switches have been moved from the centre console to a panel by the door handles. There is now a 12-volt power socket accessible to rear passengers, and various stowage spaces, including a front mobile phone cubby and a tray on the side of the console for small items. The new centre console also has a bottle holder at the rear.

Standard equipment is enhanced with DAB radio on all trim levels above Access. Air conditioning is standard on Ambiance versions and above. Top-of-the-range Lauréate versions now get a MediaNav navigation system incorporating a 7-inch touchscreen, AUX input, radio and USB and Bluetooth connectivity. Rear parking sensors are also standard and reversing camera and Hill Start Assist are options.

Dacia Sandero SCe 75 Engine

The new 998cc 3-cylinder 75PS chain cam engine just about hauls the car along, but with gearing of just 18.75mph per 1,000rpm in 5th it gets a bit noisier on the motorway. Yes, you can buy Access or Ambiance trim levels of the car for £6,995 and £7,995 respectively, but for just £800 more you can have an Ambiance with the perky TCe 90 turbo petrol engine, and those Leeds taxi drivers are going to be splashing out the full £10,195 for the dCi 90 turbodiesel, plus £50 for the essential seat and steering wheel height adjustment, £100 for the spare wheel and £450 for the satnav.

Dacia Logan MCV Spare Wheel

With more than twice the torque of the 1.0 SCe 75, the diesel takes hills in its stride or a driver plus a family of four and their holiday luggage heading to the airport. Gearing is 34mph per 1,000rpm in 5th, so it’s turning over at little more than 2,000rpm at the motorway limit.

The diesel engine also puts a bit more weight over the front wheels, making the steering feel more positive than the Sandero or Stepway, while the slightly longer wheelbase also gives it the best ride and handling of the threesome.

Dacia Logan MCV 1.5d Ci Engine

But if you’re not a taxi driver, don’t need the load lugging ability of the diesel and don’t fancy the potentially high maintenance costs of the EGR and DPF, go for the 90TCe Ambiance at £8,795 or the 90TCe Laureate at £9,995. Then all you really need to pay extra for is the spare wheel at £100.

For the same prices as the Sandero Stepway Ambiance and Laureate the Logan MCV makes a lot more sense to people who buy with their heads rather than with delusions of grandeur.

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