Ssangyong rolls out the new 11-seat Korando Turismo multipurpose vehicle it hopes will bolster sales both in its home market of Korea and overseas.
Hoping to sell 10,000 of the MPVs this year, 50% as exports, Ssangyong shows the Korando Turismo at the Gangnam Seoul Trade Exhibition and Convention Center in the upscale Gangnam district featured in the viral-phenomenon music video by Korean pop singer Psy.
Indeed, in terms of looks the Turismo is a welcome replacement for the bulky Rodius, and the new MPV is affordably priced at between 24.8 million and 35.6 million won ($22,725 and $32,600). It is powered by an e-XDi200 low-torque diesel engine producing a maximum 155 hp at 4,000 rpm.
A choice of 6-speed manual or E-Tronic Benz 5-speed automatic transmission is offered in Korea.
The vehicle makes its international debut March 5 at the Geneva auto show, where it will appear with the same specs as the model unveiled in Seoul but with a different hood ornament.
Ssangyong says development of the Korando Turismo took more than two years and required an investment of 180 billion won ($165 million).
The new-model rollout is another positive step in the beleaguered auto maker’s turnaround efforts since being acquired by India’s& Mahindra in 2011 for $463.6 million.
The auto maker says sales have exceeded 10,000 units in each of the past five months, and it recently opened an enlarged and better-equipped advanced-vehicle design center.
Spokesmen say deliveries have increased steadily since the M&M takeover, and Ssangyong’s 2013 goal is to sell 150,000 vehicles globally compared with 120,717 in 2012.