By THEODORE OPARA
SsangYong brand has fully returned to the Nigerian market as Stallion Motors, rolled out the three latest models from the company for a test-drive, over the weekend.
The test drive which began at the Headquarters of Stallion Motors Nigeria Limited, Ajose Adeogun Street, Victoria Island Lagos saw the journalists drove through the Civic Centre along Lekki-Epe Expressway to Falomo, Kingsway Road through Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS), Onikan to Ahamadu Bello Way, Bar Beach and back to the Head office.
Among the SsangYong models in the test drive were the 104kw (139 hp) Kyron mid –size sport utility vehicle (SUV), the stylish and modern Korando SUV with strong charismatic presence and the new Actyon Sports Pick-up utility truckthat is designed to competitionswith its atypical kerb weight of 1, 944kg (which is approximately 400kg more than several other contenders in its class).
Speaking shortly before the test-drive, Jatin Nadkarni, head, sales and marketing, SsangYong Motors Nigeria, described SsangYong as one of the products of acquisition partnership with Daimler-Benz.
He said SsangYong had in the quest for outstanding engineering prowess brokered quick-witted partnership with Daimler-Benz to use Mercedes Benz know-how.
The SsangYong Kyron for example is smart and sassy, offering competitive SUV package that is refined to drive though roomy and attractively priced.
“The Seat in arrangement is supportive and comfortable and he come in either the elegant deluxe cloth trim or leather upholstery material.
A peep into the cabin of the Kyronreveals how spaciousthe insideis. The switch-gear inside has a pleasant design, and the big chunky switches give another dose of manly strength to match the stylish, tough exterior lines.
However, the rear seat accommodation is practicaland could recline by up to 15 degrees the decently sized boot includes a neat floor storage compartment.
Also handy in the Kryon cruise control, power tilt/telescoping steering wheel with controls for the audio system as well as electric folding side mirrors, automatic air conditioning a climate function.
An electronic sunroof with an anti-trap blind, front headrests with a battery saver feature and front fully adjustable electric heated seats with memory and lumbar support positions are some of the standard features.
The new Ssangyong flagshop SUV, the Korando is well packaged.
Stylishly designed with modern SUV features and a strong charismatic presence, the SsangYong Korando is supported by an economic petrol or diesel engine that offers great value.
A top of the line suspension system including MacPherson strut front suspension and multilink rear suspension is incorporated in the Korando to diffuse impact and vibrations and enhance ride quality.
The steering power is alsointelligently assisted in low speed and lightly assisted in high speed to maximise stability and manoeuvrability.
But quite unlike the SUVs, the Actyon Sports Pick-upis uniquely designed with a rare kerb weight of 1, 944kg, which is approximately 400kg more than several other contenders in its class.
Nadkarni said the dynamism of the Actyon Sports Pick-up is manifest in the structure of the ladder frame chassis which ensures good-off road ability sophisticated Part Time drive systems.
He said the vehicle is built powered by – cylinder 2.3litre petrol engine that generates 149Ps of power and 214Nm of torque at 3500rpm.
And considering the hefty kerb weight, Nadkarni said the Actyon Sports pick-up has a respectable fuel economy 7.8L per 100kms for the five speed manual.
Interestingly, the Actyon Sports ‘up rides quietly on smooth surfaces when driven sensibly and it stay relatively refined with excellent power from an efficient 2.3litre petrol engine.
Aside Nigeria, SsangYong is sold in 1, 250 sales networks in over 96 countries and are actively entering emerging markets by establishing local bases.