With most of today’s most popular SUVs being built on monocoque, car-based platforms, news of manufacturers plugging away with old-school ladder chassis SUVs warms the cockles of our heart. And, SsangYong’s entrant in the segment has just been given a midlife makeover.
After its face-lift was uncovered in leaked images last October, the new SsangYong Rexton has made its formal debut — showcasing all the styling tweaks we detailed months back. The biggest of these changes is the big, proud octagonal grille. Updated headlights, taillights, and aggressive front fog light shrouds also feature.
Things are a little different inside, too. A plush flat-bottomed steering wheel and snub-sized gear-stick give the Rexton’s cabin a more premium look. The diminutive gearknob points to the Rexton’s new transmission — an eight-speed automatic, which replaces the sixer in current models.
The new transmission accompanies a beefed-up version of the current 2.2-litre turbo-diesel. Torque and power have been increased by 15kW/21Nm, making for an outright output of 148kW/441Nm. This moves the Rexton past the 133kW/430Nm Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.
Braked towing is unchanged at 3500kg braked. Standard features include an 8.0-inch touchscreen, nine airbags, dual-zone climate, AEB, and rear-cross traffic alert. The flagship model in Australia gets 20-inch wheels, leather, a 360-degree camera, heated steering wheel, and more.
Those keen on the Rexton should expect it to launch in the first half of 2021 — perhaps in some form of tandem with the firm’s updated Rhino double-cab ute.