► All-electric concept SUV hints at new Korando
► Plug-in hybrid diesels could be in the pipeline
► All-new Musso pickup debuts, too
Covering a broad spread at the 2018 Geneva motor show, SsangYong has unveiled its new Musso pickup and an E-Siv all-electric concept car, the latter showcasing the Korean SUV brand’s future product direction.
With a name that stands for ‘Electronic Smart Interface Vehicle’, the E-Siv provides strong clues about the what the next SsangYong Korando will look like when it goes on sale in 2019.
As you can see, the E-Siv has a standard boxy SUV look, spiced up with a sloping roofline, full-width lights front and rear, heavily contoured rear three-quarter body panels and an imposing front grille.
What about the powertrain?
Powered by a 140kw electric motor - that's around 197bhp - SsangYong claims the E-Siv will have a range of between 199 and 280 miles, with 80% charge achieved after 50 minutes. Top speed is 93mph.
The battery charging process can be monitored from the users’ smartphone, along with other vehicle information such as air-con settings and vehicle diagnostics. So not much new there in terms of electric vehicles, but quite an upgrade voer typical SsangYong models.
Can it drive itself?
Like most contemporary concept cars, the E-Siv does have some autonomous driving capability. Using a radar and camera sensor system, it is capable of Level 2 self-driving functions, including lane guidance assist and adaptive cruise control.
SsangYong says an additional sensor can also be fitted to allow Level 3 autonomous driving later on.
How much of the E-Siv will be carried over to the Korando replacement?
Many of the styling cues are likely to be implemented (although don’t hold your breath for that zany interior) as will the Level 2 autonomous driving tech.
It’s not yet clear with the Korando replacement will offer an all-electric powertrain, although a hybrid/plug-in hybrid version is likely.
News: Ssangyong UK CEO hints at diesel hybrid future
At the same time as Mercedes-Benz unveiled two new preproduction diesel hybrid models, Ssangyong’s UK operations boss, Nick Laird, stated that Ssangyong sees a future for diesel in its product lineup.
‘Ssangyong is a smaller Korean brand, the total sales of the company are 150,000 vehicles a year and as such we need to pick our areas where we’re making our investments. We do see a long term place for diesel and petrol in the powertrain portfolio’, commented Laird.
Asked specifically on whether diesel hybrids would be a part of this, Laird replied, ‘it’s something we’re discussing as part of a longer term product road map as to how to keep both petrol and diesel technologies going in a hybrid environment.’
And what about the new Musso pickup truck?
Boasting 3.5-tonne towing capacity and payload in excess of 1.0-tonne, the Musso (which means rhinoceros in Korean) also benefits from an unlimited-mile five-year warranty, standard part-time all-wheel drive and space for five in the double cab interior.
It's based heavily on the recently introduced Rexton SUV.
At last, a no-frills pickup perfect for the farmyard
Err, not quite. See, SsangYong recognises the importance of going after the growing number of customers interested in a plush pickup that can also walk the walk when things get a little muddy.
As such, alongside the part-time four-wheel drive (power is delivered permanently to the rear wheels with assistance from the front axle on call should the conditions demand), there is Nappa leather upholstery on top of the line versions, and heated/ventilated front seats on ‘most models’. Posh.
Other creature comforts include DAB radio and Bluetooth on all models, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto available via an 8.0-inch touchscreen on all but entry-level versions. Top spec Mussos also get 20-inch alloy wheels for added visual appeal.
I’m not sure how I feel about this, tell me about that diesel engine
It’s SsangYong's own 2.2-litre diesel, already in service in the Rexton. Headline figures are 179bhp and 295lb ft of torque, delivered through either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.
Fuel economy is a claimed average of 35.8mpg for the manual, and 32.8mpg for the automatic.
And when can I buy one?
The official UK launch will take place this summer. Expect prices to be similar, if a little more, than the outgoing Musso.
A-Z of the Geneva motor show on CAR magazine