Mahindra Ssangyong is expected to launch its second SUV, the Korando C, in India later this year. Mahindra owned Korean automaker has been producing SUVs with the Korando badging since 1983 and has spawned five generations of the vehicle.
The current generation Korando (short for Korea Can Do according to some reports), dubbed the C, was launched at the 2010 Busan Motor Show and was designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro of Italdesign fame. Initially this SUV was powered by 2.0-litre Isuzu engine and was later replaced by a 2.3-litre Mercedes-Benz engine – powertrain supplier that the company has stuck with till date. After the Korean automaker was purchased by Mahindra, it was expected that this would be the first model to be launched in the Indian market, but the seven-seater Rexton W was given priority.
The Korando is a proper five-seater SUV with aggressive and muscular styling. The most prominent features are the angular lines of the front bumper and prominently flared wheel arches. The hexagonal fog lamps complement the double section grille on which sits a large Ssangyong badge. The headlights are wraparound and get LED treatment that will continue when launched in India.At the back, the Korando C gets dual chrome exhausts, high mounted stop light, rear spoiler and a black plastic cladding on all four sides. Also included are body coloured roof rails and a stubby antenna mounted above the spoiler.
Inside, Korando is feature loaded like any other Korea car. It has a touchscreen sat-nav system with steering-mounted audio controls, ABS with EBD, two airbags, cruise control, 60:40 split- folding second row, alloy wheels, a four-wheel drive system and climate control.
The Korando, measuring 4.4 meters in length and 1.83 meters in width, is powered by a 2.0 litre turbocharged diesel engine that churns out 175bhp and 360Nm of torque. Available with the option of a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic transmission, it also comes with the option of front-wheel-drive and permanent all-wheel-drive.
Like the Rexton W, which is currently being built with 22 per cent localisation, the Korando too will be produced the same manner at Mahindra’s Chakan plant. This will allow the Indian SUV major to price the crossover in the range of Rs 15-20 lakh, and price it competitively compared to SUVs like the Chevrolet Captiva, Renault Koleos and the Skoda Yeti. Once the Korando is launched, we can expect to find many of its features, accessories and components to find their way into parent company Mahindra’s various models also.