Ssangyong are teasing a new version of the Rodius people carrier ahead of a debut at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.
The current Rodius (which sells as the Korando Turismo and Stavic in other markets) has been around for nearly a decade, and didn’t look remotely appealing even when it was newly launched.
But now, with new owners Mahindra pushing forward with cars like the Korando and a batch of concepts (well, variations on the XIV EV concept anyway, from cabriolet to EV), it’s clear Ssangyong now have more money to play with and ambitions to be another Korean car force.
Hopefully, the new Ssangyong Rodius – which will arrive in showrooms in the summer of 2013 – will still have the ability to swallow seven people and their luggage despite its redesign, and come with the option of four wheel drive, low price and lots of kit as standard.
Ssangyong tell us that the new Rodius will be offered with the choice of a 2.0 litre diesel (which we expect to offer around 175bhp) and a 3.2 litre petrol (although that’s unlikely to be sold in the UK or Europe).
But what Ssangyong do need to do is bring the dynamics of the Rodius in to the 21st century if it’s going to be credible – even at a low price and with lots of standard equipment. There’s promise from the brief release by Ssangyong on the new Roadius, which says:
Styled to be fit for outdoor, off-road driving as well as on-road driving with its streamline-shape of the radiator grille and headlamp, the new Rodius/Stavic also offers a whole package of convenience and practical values by fulfilling various needs from business, leisure, and travel.
But until we see the new Rodius at Geneva – and find out what it’s like to drive – we don’t know whether the new Rodius will just be the old Rodius wrapped up in a new skin, or a properly credible budget alternative to cars like the Ford Galaxy.