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Geneva show: SsangYong offers up SIV-2

Future proof: SsangYong is looking to ‘future-proof’ its brand with the development of new models that can run with hybrid, plug-in hybrid and full-electric powertrains, as shown by the mild-hybrid SIV-2 which looks to preview the next Korando.

Another show, another SsangYong SUV concept – but could this be the next Korando?

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SsangYong logo2 Mar 2016

By TERRY MARTIN

THREE years after the SIV-1 was unveiled at the Geneva motor show, SsangYong has used the annual Swiss world auto exhibition to present the SIV-2 – a mid-size SUV that looks to preview the next-generation Korando.

It is difficult to read too much into the latest creation given the South Korean manufacturer has presented no fewer than 11 SUV concept cars over the past five years, with only one all-new production model – the Tivoli – materialising during this period.

That said, the SIV-2 concept (for Smart Interface Vehicle) is a clear departure from the first iteration and, in presenting the car in Geneva, SsangYong Motor Co chief executive Johng-sik Choi was upbeat about the “glimpse into the future” the new version provides.

“By launching the Tivoli B-segment crossover in 2015, SsangYong clearly demonstrated its ability to design, manufacture and sell a contemporary car that absolutely addresses customer demand it is already our most successful new car launch, and has well exceeded expectations,” Mr Choi said.

“Based on the experience and confidence we have taken from Tivoli, we are keen to create cars with the style, technology and features motorists will be looking for tomorrow.

“Projecting that thinking forward is essential, and I am delighted by the glimpse into the future this exciting new SIV-2 concept demonstrates.”

No firm word on a production model was provided other than confirmation it “will evolve to become a key strategic model within the SsangYong range”, but the third-generation Korando enters its sixth year in October, meaning a redesigned model should be reaching the market in 2017 or 2018.

Few concrete details of the concept itself were provided in Geneva, although it is known that the SIV-2 uses a mild hybrid powertrain – 1.5-litre direct-injection turbocharged petrol engine that combines with a 10kW electric motor-generator and a lithium-ion battery.

Without going into specifics, the car-maker said the concept features “a lightweight body, a low centre of gravity and a chassis and suspension system that can be further developed to create alternative models with high-efficiency powertrains such as HEV (hybrid electric vehicle), PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) and EV to future-proof the SsangYong brand”.

Design-wise, the SIV-2 has similar – though reworked – elements as the SIV-1 such as severe bodywork creasing down the side panels and across the rear flanks, but with a more aggressive front-end design, particularly the revised lower grille section.

SsangYong says the vehicle was developed under its ‘dynamic motion’ design creed, with a development theme of ‘robust, specialty, premium’.

For the record, the other 10 SsangYong SUV concepts shown in the past five years that we have noted include the XAV Adventure and XLV Air (Frankfurt 2015), XIV Air and XIV Adventure (Paris 2014), XLV (Geneva 2014), LIV-1 (Seoul 2013), SIV-1 (Geneva 2013), e-XIV (Paris 2012), XIV-2 (Geneva 2012) and XIV-1 (Frankfurt 2011).

SsangYong also used this year’s Geneva show to present a stretched version of the Tivoli, dubbed the XLV, which remains off the agenda for Australia – as does the regular version – while importer Ateco Automotive and the South Korean car-maker remain deadlocked over pricing (see separate story).

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