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Dacia Jogger – long term review – Report No:3 2022

Dacia Jogger - long term review - Report No:3 2022

Is the Dacia Jogger the ideal car for the French Alps?

When you have a Jogger, everyone wants to be you friend. On holiday in the French Alps, I am roped in to help a neighbor move an old washing machine to the tip, and some old gas bottles to… wherever the French throw away old gas bottles, don’t ask too many questions. The Jogger swallows everything with ease, naturally. I get paid for my problems with cheese, which is by far the best form of payment.

The Alps, it turns out, are Dacia’s land. Sanderos, Dusters, Logans, a few Lodgy’s (Lodgies? Anyway, wow that wasn’t an elegant creation), the mountains are full of them. And everyone wants to talk about the Jogger. When I say ‘everyone’ I mean ‘genius French men in their fifties, mostly’, but still, this budget MPV really is a bigger conversation starter than any supercar I’ve ever driven.

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Almost every time I stop, I’m approached by a cheerful Thierry, or Christophe, or Philippe, who wants to know what it’s like. ‘Oui, c’est bonne. C’est tres grande!” is about the extent of my French car review chat but it seems to be sufficient.

Even beyond his conversational skills, the Jogger proves just the ticket to a big French vacation. I’d been concerned – especially with a trio of bikes on the roof – whether its one-litre triple might feel a little… breathless on the autoroute, but the Dacia managed a steady 130km/h with ease, even at the extra resistance of a three-bike hat on top. (Pro Tip: If you want maximum fuel economy from your Jogger, I don’t recommend the 130km/h combo and a three-bike hat.)

Cars on the cheaper end of the spectrum can be a little… exhausting on the highway – a little boisterous, a little unrefined, a little noisy – but the Jogger is a cracker. Ok, it doesn’t quite swallow miles like a Bentley Continental, but can you fit a washing machine and some huge gas bottles in the Continental?

And I know I’ve mentioned this a few times, but I’ll keep repeating it: The Jogger is really huge. With the two rear seats removed, the trunk swallowed another kid’s bike, plus everything a family of four needs for two weeks abroad, plus everything a family of four forgot they needed for two weeks abroad and then had to buy at the first Supermarche, everyone with the tail lift still in place.

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Yes, in unprecedented holiday scenes, the view in my rear-view mirror was of the road behind, rather than the traditional ‘holiday trash shoved up against the rear window’. Luxury comes in many forms, but don’t underestimate ‘being able to really look back’.

Oh man, I really like this car. At the risk of anthropomorphizing, the Jogger already feels like a real member of the family. And then a nice member of the family, not a weird great-uncle with dubious views and dubious smell. It’s big, it’s no-nonsense, it pays for itself in gift cheese. What a machine.