The brand reports that around 89 per cent of its sales over the last year have been to private retail, with the Sandero Stepway its most popular model - around 60 per cent of all Sandero sold are the SUV-inspired version of the cut-price supermini.
At UK market launch eight years ago, the brand’s line-up consisted of basic versions of the second-generation Dacia Sandero and Duster SUV.
Dacia’s line-up has steadily evolved to incorporate more aspirational cars like the Stepway and high-equipment Laureate trim cars (now the most popular with buyers), while the latest Sandero moves onto the same platform as the current Clio. More new cars, such as the next-generation Lodgy and the Bigster mid-size SUV, are on the horizon.
The brand has also gone fully electric - but not yet in Britain. The Dacia Spring Electric is Europe’s cheapest EV, designed as a battery-powered city car based on the Renault Kwid, capable of 143 miles on a single charge and priced from the equivalent of £10,500, depending on incentives.
Speaking with Auto Express last month, Dacia CEO Denis le Vot said that the company was still “actively considering” bringing its electric city car to the UK, with a right-hand-drive conversion.
The Spring is a 3.7 metre-long electric car that mixes a modest power output of just 44bhp and a relatively small 27.4kWh battery. But it also weighs less than one tonne, helping to deliver an official WLTP range of 143 miles between charges - more than the likes of the Honda e.
The styling is similar to the closely related Renault Kwid sold in India. That means the city car shape is bulked up with some SUV styling cues like chunky wheel arch cladding, roof rails and above-average ground clearance.
Dacia claims plenty of space inside the spring, with even the rear seats being accommodating enough for two adults. The glovebox, door pockets and a central storage box provide 23.1 litres of storage for front occupants, with further door cubbies in the back, too. For more substantial storage, the Spring gets a 300-litre boot - well above average for the city car segment.
Upfront, the functional dashboard is lifted from the Renault Kwid. There are blue trim highlights on the doors and air vent surrounds, while an optional seven-inch touchscreen multimedia system, available with a reversing camera, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, sits below the centre vents. Also among the extra-cost features are air conditioning, electric door mirrors and a full-size spare wheel, while all-around electric windows, central locking and a 3.5-inch digital display between the dials are all standards.
Under the skin, Dacia has equipped the Spring with a 43bhp electric motor with 125Nm of torque. It’s paired with a 27.4kWh battery, which according to official WLTP testing allows for a range of 143 miles. Though Dacia says those who drive around the city exclusively should get much more than that.
Dacia will also offer a smartphone app that allows users to monitor charging status from their mobile device, locate the car in real-time, and pre-heat or cool the car in vehicles equipped with air conditioning.