FORGET those hulking off-roaders with fat, whining tyres, stubbly aerial growth
and the silhouette of a Queenslander.
The compact SUV segment attracts
far more sophisticated clientele more interested in a broad-shouldered station
wagon that sits just a little higher than the rest of the traffic and is
usually – but not necessarily - fitted with all-wheel drive.
end, SsangYong has varied its tough 4WD menu and has added its own decaf soy
latte, the Korando - an attractive, car-like compact SUV.
you have to pose is, does the new Korando have enough substance beneath its
pretty face to give it legitimacy in what is now a highly competitive segment
with many entrenched, well-regarded competitors?
Model release dates: February 2011 - April 2014
THE third-generation SsangYong Korando – a re-working of the second generation
– reintroduced the Korando nameplate to this country in May 2004 as the Korean
brand made yet another foray into the Australian market.
both hard-top and soft-top variants, the Jeep-like three-door Korando came with
just one engine option – a 2.9-litre 88kW/258Nm five-cylinder diesel from
Mercedes-Benz – even though petrol engines were available overseas.
rough-and-ready Korando was renowned for its ruggedness, riding on a tough
ladder chassis – a cut-down version of the bigger Musso platform – and
no-nonsense, if unspectacular, off-road performance.
But, in the end,
its lack of on-road sophistication and style overwhelmed its virtues, with the
Korando going out of production in South Korea in 2006.
Sales of remnant
stocks drifted on until 2007 in Australia, before the then importer packed it