renault nissan alliance

9

Spot the difference Alternating pics of Nissan NP300 NivaraMercedes-Benz Concept X-CLASS and Renault Alaskan. The new Mercedes pick-up concept previews their new X-Class utility vehicle. Both it and the Renault Alaskan pick-up are a product of the agreement between Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance and are derived from the Nissan Nivara.

Good news! It’s the 380bhp Dakar Duster

Christmas has come early: two V8-powered Dusters will contest the 2015 Dakar rally

At next year's Dakar Rally, the official Renault Duster Team will field two very powerful and very modified Dusters. If you’ve been reading Top Gear at any point over the last few years, you will quickly realise this is Good News.

Renaultsport is in charge of building and fielding the two Dusters in the gruelling rally next year, in a bid to finish in the top ten. As such, the two teams have already competed in three rounds of the Argentinian Rally Cross-Country championship in preparation (one win, three runner-up results).

Both Dusters - marketed as Renault Dusters in South America, Dacia for us in the UK - will be equipped with V8 engines from the Renault Nissan Alliance producing 380bhp. That’s right, 380bhp in aDuster.

No more technical information has been given, but you can expect the full suite of Dakar-friendly gear - roll cage, upgraded suspension, brakes, cooling, underbody protection, stiffened chassis etc etc - to be applied. [x]