SsangYong Rodius

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SsangYong Rodius
SsangYong Turismo 2018 2nd facelift.jpg
SsangYong Rodius (second facelift)
Overview
ManufacturerSsangYong Motor Company
Production2004-present
AssemblyPyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea
Body and chassis
ClassMPV
Body style5-door MPV
LayoutFront-engine, rear-wheel-drive
Front-engine, four-wheel-drive
Chronology
PredecessorSsangyong Istana

The SsangYong Rodius (sold in Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and South Africa as the Stavic) is an MPV released in late 2004 by the South Korean automaker SsangYong Motor Company. Rodius is an inaccurate portmanteau of the words road and Zeus, which is intended to mean "Lord of the Road."[1] It is available in 7, 9 and 11 seat configurations (3 or 4 rows), a 5-seater version is also available in Hong Kong.[2] The seats can be folded to act as tables or folded further (double folded) to add extra cargo area. They can be turned around, encouraging conversation and can be sided forward and backward.[3]

First generation (2004–2013)[edit]

First generation
SsangYong Rodius 270 Xdi front 20100719.jpg
First generation Rodius (pre-facelift)
Overview
Also calledMicro Stavic (Sri Lanka)[4]
SsangYong Stavic
Ssangyong Rodius Euro (2012)
Production2004–2013
DesignerKen Greenley
Powertrain
Engine3.2 L M104 I6 (petrol)
2.7 L OM612 I5 (turbo diesel)
2.0 L I4 (turbo diesel)
Transmission6-speed manual
5-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase3,000 mm (118.1 in)
Length5,126 mm (201.8 in)
Width1,915 mm (75.4 in)
Height1,821 mm (71.7 in)
Curb weight2,007 kg (4,425 lb)
First generation Rodius (post-facelift)
First generation Rodius rear

The engines are the Mercedes-Benz licensed 3.2 L 6-cylinder gasoline engine (162 kW (217 hp) & 309 N⋅m (228 lb⋅ft)) and the 2.7 L 5-cylinder common rail diesel engine (121 kW (162 hp) & 342 N⋅m (252 lb⋅ft)). The diesel engine was criticised as 'old-school' and 'dated'[5], but praised for 'solid Mercedes underpinnings'.

The car was designed by Ken Greenley,[6] former head of the automotive design course at the Royal College of Art in London. The design goal was to capture the essence of a luxury yacht.[7][8]

In August 2008, the Rodius received a facelift which reduced criticism concerning its appearance, however the styling was still widely panned.[9][10] Afterwards, because of poor popularity, the Rodius was discontinued in Europe without a direct successor on December 31, 2011. However, on July 2, 2012, the Rodius returned with the new name Rodius Euro which comes with the e-XDi200 diesel engine that produces 155PS of power,[11] available with either a 6-speed MT or a 5G-Tronic automatic unit sourced from Mercedes-Benz.[12] The manual transmission was often criticised by reviewers for a poor gearchange.[13]

The car was criticised on release by many reviewers for poor build quality,[14] handling,[15] refinement, emissions, performance,[16] safety,[17] ride,[5] and interior finish[18], but praised for its space, practicality, value for money,[19] low price, number of seats, after-sales service,[16] the availability of four-wheel-drive, Mercedes-Benz mechanicals, and generous warranty terms.[20][21] Many were used as airport taxis due to the generous warranty and large space available, enabling the car to transport entire families while carrying luggage.

Appearance and styling[edit]

In the mass media, the vehicle received some negative reviews of its aesthetics, with many describing it as the 'ugliest car ever'.[22][23][24][25][26][27][28][29] Described by pundits as an 'R-Class with Down's Syndrome'[30] and 'awkward-looking',[16] the styling was unanimously derided by contemporary reviewers as 'curious',[20] 'no oil painting',[9] 'pot-bellied', 'abysmal', 'distinctive',[31] 'challenging',[10] 'hideous', 'disgusting', 'controversial', 'oddball',[18] 'outrageous',[32] 'strange', 'weird',[33] 'unusual',[34] 'peculiar',[16] 'pig-ugly', 'gopping', and an 'ocular insult'[35] with a 'gormless face',[36] 'barn-door' rear-end, 'shopping-trolley wheels', and 'grotesquely oversized front features',[14] 'put together by three blind mice'.[37]

The styling was also notably condemned by Top Gear regarding the appearance of the standard wheel trims and 'gloopy front', saying that 'the whole rulebook on what is ugly has been rewritten'.[38][39][40][41] As a follow-up, the car won the 2009 'WTF' award from Top Gear Magazine, which said that it 'looks like it got bottled in a pub brawl and stitched back together by a blind man'.[42][43] Jeremy Clarkson described the car as a coupe and a removal van 'nailed together in the most unholy merger since Caligula fell in love with his horse', with 'wheels... the size of Smarties',[44] while Richard Hammond criticised it as 'rather ugly'.[19]

Due to its appearance, the car was quickly dubbed the 'Odious Rodius' by automotive journalists, some of which described the car as a 'surprised hippopotamus' that was 'so ugly it could frighten small children'.[45] The car was voted by readers of the Daily Telegraph as the ugliest car on the road, taking 29% of the vote, commenting that 'even its own mother would call it ugly'.[45][30] In Australia, the car was described by the Sydney Morning Herald as looking like 'a collapsing bus shelter', and by Wheels as 'having a face like a burnt thong'.[32]

In response to this criticism, SsangYong denied that the car was ugly, and replied that the vehicle 'comes with a strong emotional component that will make it the focus of attention wherever it goes'.[45][14]

In 2017, Top Gear attempted to realise Greenley's design aspirations by marrying a pre-facelift Rodius with a boat chassis to create a luxury yacht, and sailing it in Monaco.[46][47]

Second generation (2013–present)[edit]

Second generation
2017 SsangYong Rodius Turismo EX 2.2.jpg
Overview
Also calledSsangYong Turismo (United Kingdom)
SsangYong Korando Turismo (South Korea)

SsangYong Stavic

SsangYong Stavic Rodius (Algeria)
Production2013–present
Powertrain
Engine2.0 L I4 (diesel)[48]
2.2 L I4 (diesel)[49]
Transmission6-speed manual
5-speed NAG 5G-Tronic automatic
7-speed NAG 7G-Tronic automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase3,000 mm (118.1 in)
Length5,130 mm (202.0 in)
Width1,915 mm (75.4 in)
Height1,850 mm (72.8 in)
Curb weight2,097 kg (4,623 lb)
Second generation Turismo(Rodius) rear
Second generation Rodius interior
Second generation Rodius facelift

The second generation Rodius, called the Korando Turismo in South Korea, was revealed on February 5, 2013 and was first shown at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show with sales commencing soon after. The new model comes in nine-, ten- or eleven-seat configurations (in addition to the standard 5 and 7 seat variants) and offers up to 3,240 liters of cargo volume. Powering the new Rodius/Korando Turismo is a 2.0-liter turbodiesel engine connected to either a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 5-speed Mercedes-Benz-sourced automatic transmission.[50] The current 2016+ Turismo offers an updated 7-speed Mercedes-Benz e-Tronic gearbox with the same 6-speed manual available. The 2016+ Turismo also complies with Euro VI emissions standards.[51] The car is based on the same platform as its predecessor.[52]

This generation of the car is badged as the Turismo in the United Kingdom due to the particularly negative reception of the previous model in the UK regarding its styling.[52]

In March 2014, the second generation Stavic was awarded “2014 Car of the Year – Best MPV Design” by Grand Prix, the most famous automotive magazine in Thailand, at the 35th Bangkok International Motor Show 2014.[53] The styling was praised as a significant improvement on its predecessor.[54][55][32][52]

In July 2018, a facelift version was launched with similar headlights, new front grille, new front front bumper, resigned bonnet, redesigned front fenders, new steering wheel and new infotainment unit. [56][57]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]