Many of the pickups seen on UK roads are fashion accessories, rather than working vehicles. In many cases, it’s obvious that a Ford Focus would have been a more sensible — and easily usable — choice.
Buyers who really need a working pickup aren’t always so keen to splash a lot of cash on something that will have a hard life. That’s where budget competitors like Korean firm SsangYong come into play.
The firm has just updated its 1-tonne payload Musso pickup with Euro 6 diesel engines and increased its towing capacity from 2.7 tonnes to three tonnes. Previously known as the Korando Sports, the firm has decided to reintroduce the Musso nameplate for this model to differentiate this light commercial offering from its passenger car range.
Musso means rhinoceros in Korean, so the choice of name is hardly subtle. But this updated truck should be able to make fair claim to being a tough workhorse. The 1-tonne payload and 3-tonne towing capacity are class competitive, although some more expensive peers can pull 3.5t.
The new and more refined 2.2-litre Euro 6 engine also promises to offer a worthwhile improvement to power and torque compared to the outgoing model:
|Peak torque||360Nm||400Nm (from 1,400-2,800rpm)|
The new double cab Musso is fitted with multi-link rear suspension and progressive rear coil springs – the only pick-up at this price to offer such a system – which gives a relaxed and comfortable car-like ride, while also carrying over a tonne weight on its load deck.
There are two models in the range. The entry-level SE includes an updated front grill and dashboard, plus silver finish 18″ alloy wheels and hard-wearing wipe-clean TPU (Thermoplastic polyurethane) seat upholstery.
The more upmarket EX model is available with an optional six-speed automatic transmission and boasts black 18″ alloy wheels, roof rails, LED running lights and heated leather seats. There’s also a power operated driver’s seat, automatic air conditioning, automatic headlights, rain sensing wipers, 7” touchscreen RDS radio with iPod and Bluetooth.
The SE model starts from £15,995 +VAT, while the EX starts from £17,995 +VAT, or £18,995 +VAT for the automatic model.
By way of comparison, the starting price for a double cab Mitsubishi L200 Series 5 is £20,249 +VAT. The Nissan Navara starts from £23,520+VAT, while the Volkswagen Amarok starts from £26,150 +VAT.
These are potentially big savings for owners planning to keep the Musso for a few years. Heavy users might also want to consider the fact that the Musso has an unlimited mileage five-year warranty.
While the L200 does have a five-year warranty, it’s capped at a modest 62,500 miles. The Navara’s five-year warranty is limited to 100,000 miles. The Amarok’s manufacturer backing is limited to just three years.
It’s easy to see that if the Musso can deliver the goods, SsangYong could increase its foothold in the UK’s fast-growing pickup market.