When Renault revealed the first images of the new Dacia Sandero and Sandero Stepway early in September 2020, official details were scarce. Now, however, that’s changed.

While the models featured here wear Dacia badges, they preview the Renault-branded versions destined for South African shores.

So, what new information has been released? Well, the French firm has dropped the first images of the third-generation models’ cabins, as well as platform and initial engine details, plus exterior dimensions.

We’ll start with the latter. The new Sandero measures 4 088 mm long, 1 848 mm wide and 1 499 mm tall, with a ground clearance of 133 mm. The Stepway is a little longer and taller, at 4 099 mm and 1 535 mm respectively, with ground clearance hiked to 174 mm. Both variants boast a claimed luggage capacity of 328 litres, an improvement of 36 litres.

The newcomers run on the firm’s latest CMF modular platform, which Renault says results in “greater resistance and rigidity with less weight”. A new front axle has been fitted, too, complete with rectangular suspension arms that the automaker claims provide “effective shock absorption and enhanced steering”.

In Europe, the engine line-up kicks off with the “SCe 65” model (offered in Sandero form only), which employs a naturally aspirated 1,0-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine driving the front wheels via a five-speed manual transmission.

Then there’s the “TCe 90”, which uses a turbocharged 1,0-litre, three-cylinder petrol unit paired with a six-speed manual transmission or a new continuously variable transmission. Finally, the “TCe 100 Bi-Fuel” features a new LPG bi-fuelled turbocharged 1,0-litre, three-cylinder engine, also paired with a six-speed manual transmission.

Inside, Renault claims rear seat accommodation is “especially spacious”, with an additional 42 mm of space compared with the outgoing models. In addition, the firm says the cabin offers up to 21 litres of handy storage space.

Up front, you’ll find newly designed seats providing “greater comfort and support” and trimmed in a “more premium” upholstery. Renault says it has added a wider range of adjustment to the driver’s seat and steering wheel. The gearlever, meanwhile, is shorter than that of the outgoing model.

The Sandero and Sandero Stepway will be offered (in Europe, at least) with two different multimedia systems. The first, dubbed Media Control, allows smartphones to be placed in a holder in front of the driver, creating a remote infotainment system. Media Nav, meanwhile, brings an 8,0-inch touchscreen positioned at the top of the facia, angled slightly towards the driver and featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality.