Dacia has picked up the title of What Car? 2015 ‘Best Small Car for less than £12,000’ with its Sandero 1.2 Ambiance hatchback for the third successive year.

After initially picking up the accolade in 2013 following the brand’s entrance into the UK car market, and confidently retaining it last year, the stylish, practical and affordable supermini has taken the honours once more to truly reaffirm its popularity alongside the rest of Dacia’s ‘shockingly affordable’ range.

Commenting on the decision to give the award to the Sandero, Jim Holder, Editor, What Car? said: “There are cheap cars and then there’s the Dacia Sandero. What really helps the Sandero’s case, and boosts its value for money, is its huge interior space. There are few cars in this class that offer this much room for passengers and luggage.”

“It’s quick enough to feel comfortable in and out of town, and our True MPG tests have revealed it’s possible to get within a stone’s throw of its official fuel economy. Consider the fact that the Sandero comes with a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty and the deal looks even better.”

Commenting on the result, Andy Heiron, Dacia UK Brand Manager said: “We’re delighted that the judges at What Car? have recognised the Sandero’s qualities for the third year in a row – especially given that starting from a ‘shockingly affordable’ £5,995 you can get one from just half the amount of the category it competes in.”

The Dacia Sandero is a five-door hatchback, available in three trim levels with a choice of two petrol engines and one diesel engine. Pricing starts from £5,995, making it the lowest priced new car on sale in the UK today. The specific Ambiance version chosen by What Car? comes with features such as Bluetooth connectivity, electric windows and an ECO driving mode, improving efficiency and fuel consumption figures.

Dacia continued its prodigious rise in the UK with another strong year of sales, with 23,862 new Dacia owners during 2014, up 39.2 per cent compared to 2013.