Or, it turns out, you could buy a new family car. One with air-con, hill-start assist, electronic stability control, emergency brake assist, Isofix, LED daytime running lights, front fog lights, tinted windows, electric front windows, DAB radio, USB slot and Bluetooth. It has five seats, and a decent boot that would fit a couple of small suitcases or 10 bags of supermarket shopping. It’s called the Dacia Sandero; it’s been around since 2013 but it’s been refreshed. Air-con now appears as standard a trim level lower, Ambience; there’s a new grill, new lights, changes to the dashboard and steering wheel, and a 1.0-litre three-pot petrol engine replaces the entry-level 1.2-litre engine in the summer.
The Dacia Sandero is not a great-looking car. It’s pretty boring; tail-lights a bit like a Polo’s, a ubiquitous Euro-car, made in Romania, designed by people who long ago gave up on aspiration.
And yes, the doors close with a cheap ping, the interior plastics are very plasticky, the wind and road noise mean you have to really raise your voice on motorways, the rear windows have manual handles, and the change from fourth to fifth gear is a bit sticky.