Fresh Start For Ssangyong

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Tlie troubled SsangYong brand - largely know for producing rugged 4x4s and SUVs - has secured what it hopes will be a healthier future following confirmation of an agreement between the South Korean company and Mahindra & Mahindra - an Indian-based manufacturer of 4x4s.

Hie news has been greeted with delight by the UK's SsangYong importer, with Paul Williams -managing director of Koelliker UK -welcoming the creation of what will be a jo:nt producer of SUVs: 'This is great news for our customers, dealers and staff here in the UK. It secures a firm footing from which to move forwards, and - with the imminent arrival of the SsangYong Korando, our new C-sector crossover vehicle - means we can look forward to a successful new era for the SsangYong brand.'

The first shipment of the new Korando (pictured) is due here in the New Year, and Williams insists it will be competitively priced to compete against the Hyundai ix35, Kia Sportage and Nissan Qashqai: 'The new car is attracting much interest in the motor trade. We arc on the point of appointing five new dealers, and interest in the franchise has never been stronger.'

According to Jeremy Clarke, SsangYong's PR representative in the UK, the first 2011 shipment of vehicles will also include updated versions of the current 4x4 models - the Kyron and Rexton - which will continue as part of the line-up. Clarke told 4x4 Mart: 'Korando will be on sale from January, but obviously as a crossover it takes the brand into a whole new - and rapidly expanding -market sector.'

For further details of the current SsangYong line-up and to sign up for further news, visit www.ssangyonggb.co.uk.

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