£18,995 - £24,995 Price range
36 - 39 MPG
SsangYong has revamped its old, infamous Rodius and brought forth the marvel that is SsangYong Turismo. Considering the unpleasant design of Turismo’s ancestor, SsangYong had nowhere to go but up. The Korean car manufacturer has answered the criticism by showcasing the Turismo with a design that’s improved to a certain extent.
On first site of this five-metre long vehicle, it’s impossible to overlook that SsangYong Turismo is a big car. However, its ginormous size means lavish interior space. The MPV is capable of holding up to seven adults at a time and still have enough for storage in the boot that could put the Land Rover Discovery and Ford Galaxy to shame. That said, despite many renovations, the interior still feels a little cheap with the remnants of the Rodius still sticking around in the form of cheap-looking shiny plastics.
Driving the SsangYong Turismo is not one of the best experiences in the world, its massive size makes the vehicle difficult to control. The vehicle range is available with only one engine; a 2.0 litre 153hp e-XDi diesel. But you can chose between a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission. Reviewers believe that the steering is completely lifeless, so turning this vehicle is no easy feat. However, the SsangYong Turismo EX variant is equipped with four-wheel driving providing better grip on and off road.
One of the biggest selling points of the SsangYong Turismo is its low cost, which makes up for its follies in other categories. However, running costs in the long run are higher.
The SsangYong Turismo is great for extra-urban routes, especially if you frequently make runs to and from the airport. Its large storage and seating capacity make it a great car for big families on a budget and those who generally carry a lot of luggage on their trips.
The SsangYong Turismo measures at around 5.1 metres in length and 1.85 metres in height, making it one of the biggest vehicles of its kind on the road. At first sight, it is difficult to notice the details that make the Turismo not-so-pretty, as you gasp at the sheer vastness of space inside the MPV.
After the facelift that the Rodius received, turning it into the Turismo, SsangYong included soft-touch plastics and a leather steering wheel. However, despite the improvements, there is still some traces of cheap-looking, shiny plastics which are visible within the interior of the car. The centrally placed instruments and the warning lights are hidden behind the large steering wheel, making it difficult for the driver to read. However the steering is height-adjustable as per the driver’s need.
The interior is simple, but looks sturdy enough. All variants include electric mirror doors, automatic air conditioning front and back, six speakers, Bluetooth connectivity and two 12-volt ports to charge your electronic gadgets. All models, apart from Turismo S which has delux fabric, include leather seats to give a posh interior look.
The SsangYong Turismo sports seven seats in a 2-2-3 formation, with enough space between the middle two seats for an adult person to walk their way to the back, albeit while ducking. This means you will not have to fold down the middle seats to get to the bench at the back. SsangYong has not applied any space-saving techniques within the Turismo, allowing even six-foot-tall adults to easily avail the acres of space available for every passenger. The vehicle also contains ISOFIX fittings for the middle seats so you can fit child seats securely.
The massive space ensures that seven adults can easily stretch their legs inside the car and keep their luggage or shopping bags with them. Not just that, even with the seven seats intact, the Turismo hosts an 875-litre boot that is a useful boxy shape. The middle and the back seats are removable, which then create space for 3,146 litres of load space, more than anything that competitors like the Land Rover Discovery, Vauxhall Zafira, SEAT Alhambra and Ford Galaxy can offer. The middle seats can also be easily folded and turned into tables for use by those sitting in the back.
Even though the experts says that the Turismo’s driving experience has moved leaps ahead since its rejuvenation from the Rodius, it is still not the best. The suspension system of the Turismo has improved significantly which can pillow most bumps on the road. SsangYong has installed a double wishbone front suspension and rear independent multi-link suspension in all variants of this MPV, providing a comfortable ride for everyone inside, even those sitting in the back rows.
The transmission in almost all variants is rear-wheel drive, however you can opt for a 4×4 selectable drivetrain in the EX (Auto) variant which provides better grip and control, on and off the road. The EX (Auto) also includes a low-ratio gearbox providing added grip on slippery surfaces.
The 153hp engine means that it is not the fastest vehicle to drive, however the Turismo will do well on motorways and major roads, where the Turismo will spend most of its working life.
When buying an MPV, you have to mentally prepare yourself for a tough driving experience. This is particularly importantl for the Turismo, which does not boast great steering control. The reviewers believe that the slow-steering of the vehicle makes turning this MPV a hefty exercise for the driver. The large body also means that there is quite a visible lean while going around corners.
SsangYong has provided the same engine for all the four variants of the Turismo. The S, ES, ES (Auto) and EX (Auto) all sport a SsangYong produced 2.0 litre 153hp e-XDi diesel engine which has a 1998cc capacity and four cylinders in line. Given its capacity, the engine is said to give a fairly decently level of performance and fine-tuning. However, the CO2 returns and fuel economy is not perhaps the best feature of the SsangYong Turismo, especially when compared to Ford Galaxy or a Volkswagen Sharan.
All variants come with rear-wheel drive, except for EX (Auto) which has a selectable 4×4 drivetrain.
The manual variants of the Turismo give fuel economy of 37.2mpg on average, however they fare better on the extra-urban routes where they go upto 44.1mpg. With the 80-litre tank supported by the vehicle, it gives a pretty good range.
The automatic variants, especially the 4×4 EX (Auto) gives an average of 34.9 mpg with the CO2 emissions of 212g/km, making it not exactly the greenest car out there. This, however, is not a huge pay-off for the automatic transmission, which makes the driving experience much better.
The Turismo is a big car, thus it comes with big costs in the long run. Considering its low fuel economy and a not-so-green CO2 emission rate, the first year road tax on the manual variants is £485 followed by £265 in each subsequent year. For the automatic transmissions, you will have to pay £635 at first and then £285 for the subsequent years.
In terms of insurance, the S, ES and ES (Auto) variants fall in insurance group 27, while EX (Auto) is in insurance group 29. It also comes with a 5-year unlimited mileage warranty.
Since SsangYong is not a very popular brand in the United Kingdom, it has a long way to go before Euro NCAP tests its cars for crashes. It falls short of safety features when compared to the vehicles produced by more mainstream manufacturers.
Nonetheless, the SsangYong Turismo comes equipped with dual front airbags on all variants and side airbags in the ES, ES (Auto) and EX (Auto) variants. There are also speed sensing door locks, front and rear fog lights, along with alarm and immobiliser in all variants. The Turismo also has traction control for extra grip on slippery roads.
With the SsangYong Turismo S priced at £17,995, the car is unbelievably cheap considering its size and features! Despite high running costs and road tax, the entry level variants of Turismo are still £7,000 cheaper as compared to the rival SEAT Alhambra.
There is a list of add-ons that you can get with your car, which cost the same for all the variants of the SsangYong Turismo. Depending on your choice, you can go for a metallic paint for an added £500, a Kenwood touch-screen satellite navigation DAB for £999 or a simple Kenwood DAB with radio for £460. You can also get a reverse camera either on your touch screen or rear-view mirrors, depending on how much you want to spend.
Apart from the optionals, each model comes pre-fitted with six speakers, remote audio controls, CD and RDS radio with iPod and Bluetooth connectivity, roof rails, spare wheel, and air conditioning for front and rear along with air quality control system.
The SsangYong Turismo falls way behind the European competition in most areas. But, if you are looking for a spacious seven-seater MPV on a budget, then the Turismo has few rivals at this price. The fact that it comes reasonably well equipped (and with the option to fit four-wheel drive) will likely make it even more appealing – as will the security of a five-year warranty.