Low-profile Korean brand growing at light speed

Low-profile Korean brand growing at light speed


With the spectre of chapter now within the rear-view mirror, Korea’s SsangYong has extra greater than doubled its Australian gross sales to the top of July in comparison with 2022.

The long-running battler model is finally residing as much as its potential, having offered 3795 pickups and SUVs between January and July, representing progress of 110 per cent.

With SsangYong Australia’s earlier full 12 months gross sales document (January to December) being the 3943 automobiles it offered in 2022, it’ll smash its all-time document. If the model retains on its present tempo it’ll end 2023 with round 6500 gross sales.

To offer this end result a bit of extra context, which means the corporate has offered extra automobiles in Australia this 12 months than Jeep (2937), Mini (2575) and Peugeot (1374).

Main the cost is the SsangYong Musso dual-cab ute with 2304 gross sales, up 220.9 per cent YoY. Subsequent is the associated Rexton massive SUV with 1117 gross sales (up 47 per cent).

The smaller Korando, a extra urban-focused crossover (374 gross sales, up 13.7 per cent), is the relative weak level in a three-model vary on account of a lot steeper competitors.

SsangYong has had a vibrant historical past in Australia since 2005, being distributed by unbiased importers Sime Darby and Ateco, earlier than a pause after which re-launch below a factory-led association from 2019.

Globally the corporate has gone from disaster to disaster, although its automobiles have for a while now belied this reality by being fairly aggressive.

Its most up-to-date disaster got here after former majority shareholder, India’s Mahindra, pulled the pin in 2020, putting it right into a interval of flux and giving the Korean authorities some complications because it sought to facilitate a rescue.

After a couple of suitors kicked the tyres and backed out, a consortium led by chemical and steel conglomerate KG Group took majority possession in August 2022 and set about steadying the ship.

At the beginning of 2023 the corporate made the decision to change the company’s name from SsangYong to KG Mobility, stating that “below the identify of SsangYong, the corporate has a fandom but additionally has a painful picture”.

The corporate shortly after this posted its first quarterly profit since 2016.

It’s not but been confirmed when SsangYong Australia will transfer to the brand new company naming and rebrand as KG Mobility Australia.

We do nevertheless know there’s some new and facelifted product coming by late 2023 or early 2024, together with the up to date Musso and up to date Rexton – coated here and here – in addition to a new medium SUV model called Torres with an expected EV option alongside the petrol.

KG Mobility/SsangYong Motor unveiled this electric version of the Torres on the 2023 Seoul Mobility Present and confirmed it will use a lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery from BYD.

Long term, KG Mobility used the identical occasion to indicate off a trio of concepts previewing production vehicles due earlier than 2025. Particulars stay scant presently, however the trio contains an electrical ute and two electrical SUVs.



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Alex Lorel

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