Dacia Duster Tuning

"Thanks for reading my Dacia Duster tuning guide."

The Duster is a good car tuning project to fill your spare time. If you do your homework then you can create an awesome Duster but don't be fooled there are lots of modified kits out there that will simply not suit it read our unbiased guides first.

We can see why the Duster won Bargain car of the year, and Best small SUV, it offers so much and is actually pretty good on the road to drive.

TorqueCars will provide a guide to Duster tuning and report on the greatest modifications for your car. Dacia Duster are good project cars and with the optimum sports upgrades like remaps, turbo improvements and camshafts you will maximise your driving experience.

Tuning tips and articles

Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums


Handling/Suspension upgrades

Improving the handling for car enthusiasts first priority in your Duster tuning project.

If you set the toe out to 0.9 to 1.5 degrees on the front, and add a small amount of negative camber then cornering will often be enhanced.

We suggest that you fit modified suspension and lower the car by 24mm - 41 mm. Larger drops require arch work - especially on models already equipped with uprated suspension.

Don't just look at the peak power figures, you need to see the whole torque curve when determining if a mod is right for you Duster.

With our guides your Duster can become an awesome performer and yet still reliable daily run around.

Smaller engines do not provide much of a return in terms of power so start with a bigger engine. Engine swaps are a good option if you have a small engine size.

Power mods.

These are the modified mods are usually fitted by our members, decide how far you want to push your car before you start.

  • 1.2 TCe 125 H5Ft DOHC Turbo 123hp @5250rpm 151lbft @2000 rpm
  • 1.5 16V H4K DOHC 105hp @5600rpm 105lbft @4000rpm
  • 1.6 16V 105 K4M 690 DOHC 103hp @5750rpm 109lbft @3750 rpm
  • 1.6 16V Ethanol K4M Hi-Flex DOHC 113hp @5750rpm 112lbft @3750 rpm
  • 1.6 16V LPG K4M Bi-fuel DOHC 101hp @5750rpm 106lbft @3750 rpm
  • 1.6 16V 105 K4M 606 DOHC 103hp @5750rpm 109lbft @3750 rpm
  • 2.0 16V F4R DOHC 133hp @5500rpm 144lbft @3750 rpm
  • 2.0 16V Ethanol F4R Hi-Flex DOHC 139hp @5500rpm 151lbft @3750 rpm
  • 1.5 dCi 85 K9K 796 I4 SOHC Turbodiesel 84hp @4000rpm 148lbft @1900 rpm
  • 1.5 dCi 110 K9K 896 SOHC Turbodiesel 106hp @4000rpm 177lbft @1750 rpm
  • 1.5 dCi 110 K9K 898 SOHC Turbodiesel 109hp @4000rpm 177lbft @1750 rpm

The 1st generation production run will continue into 2023 in some markets, namely India and Mexico where a third generation model will replace it.

2nd Generation 2017-

  • 1.0 L I3 turbo (petrol)
  • 1.3 L I4 turbo (petrol)
  • 1.6 L i4 (petrol)
  • 2.0 L i4 (petrol)
  • 1.5 L i4 (diesel)

Getting the right uprated mods for your planned usage of the car is vital. Stage 3 competition upgrades just don't work well on the road hard to control in slow traffic.

Typical stage 1 mods often include: Sports exhaust, Alloy wheels, Panel air filter, Lighter flywheel, Remap, Suspension upgrade (drop 24mm - 41 mm.).

Typical stage 2 mods often include: fuel pump upgrades, Fast road cam, Ported and polished head, high flow fuel injector, Power/Sport clutch.

Typical stage 3 mods often include: Sports gearbox, Internal engine upgrades (pistons/head/valves), Adding or upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Engine balancing, Competition cam.

Your goal when modding your car should be a nice flat torque band. You want to avoid sending all the torque to be at the top end of the rev range unless you are creating a motor sport car.

In this article we shall give an overview and introduction to the best mods for your car, but we'd encourage you to spend some time on the site looking into the details of each type of performance mod.A fast road camshaft usually proves to be one of the best NASP power modifications you can do from a single upgrade to your engine.

The exhaust and intake valve durations play a large part in your cars power band, but be careful here, getting this wrong can upset the idle and make the car awkward to drive in traffic. You'd need to follow a camshaft upgrade with other mods and finish with a reflashed ECU to fully release the power gain.

When pushing up the power you will need to uprate to the fuelling. More power needs more fuel.

Using higher octane fuel is another option if you find you are suffering from pinking or premature ignition on your Dacia project after fitting other motorsport upgrades. Upgrading the injectors is another beneficial modification and will deliver sufficient fuel.

If have increased your fuelling with bigger injectors you will also need to get a bigger fuel pump to supply it.

Intake and Exhaust Tuning.

Now we move on to the intake and exhaust and ensure proper flow through the engine. Air induction kits only help to add performance if your cars air intake is restricted! Adding an induction kit to most standard engines will see ZERO LOW END POWER GAIN AT ALL. If you have heavily modified your engine and it's need for air INCREASES DRAMATICALLY then an induction kit is the answer and will help remove this restriction.

For most Duster engines TorqueCars would suggest you just go with a washable panel air filter. On heavily tuned engines and turbo vehicles an induction kit will help release the power providing you address the problem of supplying cold air.

Sports exhausts can usually air flow through the engine but do not go too big or you might just stuff your flow rate and make things worse. So generally speaking, keep to a size of 1.5 to 2.5 inches for best results.

Airflow through the head can be dramatically increased with some professional gas flowing. These should match and be setup to take into account any other engine mods. A good multi plate fast road power clutch will help to keep that power going where it should. Never skimp or think that the standard clutch to cope. The best mods we would do for your Duster are remaps, sports camshafts and induction improvements.

NASP engines do not achieve big power gains if you remap them, unless you have done extensive modifications. With turbocharged engines this is another story. A remapped turbo will give impressive power gains and fully release the potential power of the engine.

We've also seen some tuners toying with twincharging conversions and making some impressively high power gains.

The most significant power gains for NASP engines usually involve the addition of forced induction. It is generally cheaper to bolt on a supercharger than it is to fit a working turbo. Turbos provide boost in exponential proportion to increasing engine speed and this can make mapping difficult.

It is easier to map a supercharger because the boost is correlating to engine speed on a linear curve. Decreasing the engines compression ratio will allow you to add forced induction, water injection may also help prevent detonation.

Alloy wheel upgrades.

The benefits of alloys include reducing your unsprung weight and better brake cooling via the extra air flow they allow. We can't go into too much detail here about tires but they are how the car puts the power down on the road so are a critical choice. directional tread pattern tires work well on Duster, and make a big difference over budget tires. It is worth noting that although they can look cool on the Duster big alloy wheels will actually decrease your performance. The larger you go the lower your acceleration will be - this to the change in your effective final drive ratio.

Although some people have gone larger than this without issues we would stick to a 17 inch rim size as the maximum.

If you would like to know more, or just get some friendly advice on Tuning your car please join us in our friendly forum where you can discuss Duster options in more detail with our Duster owners. It would also be worth reading our unbiased Dacia tuning articles to get a full grasp of the benefits and drawbacks of each modification.

Please help us improve these tips by sending us your feedback in the comments box below.

We love to hear what our visitors have got up to and which mods work best for them on each model of car. Comments are used to improve the accuracy of these articles which are continually updated.

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