Redesigned SsangYong Rodius Shows Its Face in Geneva

The previous generation of SsangYong‘s large people carrier, the Rodius (also called Korando Turismo in Korea and Stavic in Russia, Australia and Chile) was widely acknowledged as being one of the ugliest cars in the world. However, due to a mix of interior space, practicality and versatility, many overlooked its less than successful styling and actually bought one. The Korean automaker, most likely aware of the bad design decisions they made in the past, have decided to completely redesign the Rodius, in order to make it more appealing. The new version, which has just been revealed at theGeneva Motor Show, does get revised (and improved) styling, as well as a host of other improvements in order to keep it relevant on the market. Even SsangYong itself admits that their designers “went to great lengths” to make the new Rodius less-ugly, and with the more conservative approach adopted here, I say they’ve succeeded. Sure, it’s still not a looker, but at least it has a solid and robust looking shape, which makes it a little bit easier on the eye. However, while the styling may have been the hot topic of discussion whenever the old Rodius came up in a conversation (if ever), there has always been a lot to like about it. First off, with its 3,000 mm wheelbase, the large MPV can accommodate up to 11 people (!). Furthermore, each seat can be folded or removed individually, thus making this vehicle practical both for carrying people, as well as a decent amount of cargo. Only one engine is offered in Europe, a 2.0-liter e-XDi200 turbo diesel, which is good for 155 PS (153 hp) at 4000 rpm. The engine’s torque figure is impressive, at 360 Nm  (265 lb-ft), and it is achieved and maintained over a wide rev-range, from 1,500 to 2,800 rpm. The power is sent to the wheels via either a six-speed manual transmission, or a Mercedes-Benz-sourced five-speed auto. There’s independent suspension on all four corners, and just in case things do go wrong, the MPV features Electronic Stability Program (ESP), Active Roll over Protection (ARP) and a Brake Assist System (BAS). By Andrei Nedelea