Ssangyong unveils new cars to rev up sales
Ssangyong Motor, the country’s smallest carmaker, rolled out five new models on Jan. 4, underscoring its efforts to recuperate from a life-threatening crisis that left the company under court receivership.
The automaker is looking to its latest lineup - the 2010 Rexton, Kyron, Actyon, Actyon Sports and Chairman H models - to help it regain traction in the market.
Industry observers say introducing five new models simultaneously is unprecedented in the local automotive industry.
“We see it as the beginning of Ssangyong’s aggressive marketing activities to stabilize its businesses through sales expansion,” Lee Yoo-il, the court-appointed receiver for Ssangyong, said in a statement issued by the company.
Chairman H is a large-sized premium sedan, while the others are all sport-utility vehicles.
To help drum up business, the company is applying its extended after-sales service package to the new SUV models. Previously, the warranty on these types of vehicles covered repairs for three years after purchase or up to 60,000 kilometers (37,300 miles) on the odometer. Ssangyong, though, has expanded that to five years or 100,000 kilometers.
Analysts say it’s worth paying particularly close attention to two of the latest models: the 2010 Rexton, the latest edition of one of Ssangyong’s best-selling brands, and the Actyon Sports, a variation of the Actyon. Following is a closer look at these vehicles.
The Rexton was first introduced in 2001, giving way to the upgraded New Rexton in 2003 and then the Rexton II in 2006. Based on the success of the line, Ssangyoung introduced the Rexton Euro in 2007 and the Super Rexton in 2008.
After a brief hiatus in 2009, the company unveiled the 2010 Rexton, which features numerous environmentally friendly technologies such as a catalyzed diesel particulate filter and a variable geometric turbine turbo charger. Based on these improvements, the government designates the 2010 Rexton as a low-emissions car, which makes it eligible for an exemption from a quasi tax related to environmental standards for five years after the purchase of the car.
Some of the other new features include enhanced parking brake technology, a tire pressure monitoring system, a forward collision warning and avoidance system and an electronic toll collection system, which enhance the safety and convenience of driving the vehicle.
The 2010 Rexton can be purchased for between 27.35 million won ($23,370) and 40.70 million won.
2010 Actyon Sports
The 2010 Actyon Sports is the newest model in a series that was first launched in 2006.
Although some market watchers classify it simply as a sport-utility vehicle, the Actyon Sports is in reality a mix between an SUV and a pickup truck.
The company calls it a sport-utility truck but counts it as a type of SUV.
Interestingly, the government recognizes it as a truck, and thus slaps only 28,500 won in annual auto taxes on it - less than a tenth of the tax imposed on other vehicles of the same size.
The 2010 Actyon Sports provides a roomy bed in the back, which can be utilized for work and leisure purposes. It also has an environmentally friendly diesel engine with 145 horse power.
To enhance the ride and ensure smoothness, the vehicle is equipped with upgrades that are often found in premium SUVs, such as double-wishbone and five-link coil spring suspension. The price runs from 20.40 million won to 25.75 million won.
By Moon Gwang-lip [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Left: 2010 Rexton
Right: 2010 Actyon Sports. Provided by Ssangyong Motor