Budget Time
4x4|March 2017
Budget Time

Ssang Yong has significantly updated its Korando Sports pick-up and changed its name. How does it match up to its more expensive rivals?

Nigel Fryatt

The Musso returns! Those with longer memories will recall that there has been a SsangYong Musso before, back in the 1990s. Originally introduced into the UK as the Daewoo Musso, this was a rugged and competent 4x4, aimed at offering a cheaper alternative to models like the Land Rover Discovery, Nissan Patrol and Toyota Land Cruiser. The specification, the dynamics and its highly competitive price should have made more of a sales impact, but sadly the model was withdrawn and spotting one still on the roads today is a bit like being a 4x4 twitcher spotting a rare migrating waterfowl. Now the name is back, this time on the much-revised SsangYong Korando Sport pick-up. We have always commented that the previous SsangYong pick-up deserved more success, given its specification, dynamics and price…

The new Musso is a very significant improvement on the previous model, this is certainly no mere cosmetic update, hence the completely new name. While the styling is revised, it still bears a strong resemblance to the Korando Sports, more importantly, the Musso gets a much-improved new engine and gearbox. The engine still has commercial origins, as indeed do many pick-up models, but this 2.2-litre turbo diesel is a lot quieter, smoother in operation and is now Euro 6 compliant. It is also much more powerful; the Korando Sports only had 153bhp, whereas the Musso now claims 176bhp, which is much closer to its competitors. Torque is up as well, now a claimed 400Nm at 4000rpm.

The engine is mated to new gearbox options; a six-speed manual or an Aisin six-speed automatic. The previous model only had five cogs, and this auto ‘box is a smooth changer and can be left alone, although it is possible to switch to ‘manual’ changes, very important if you are seriously taking this off-road.

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March 2017