Founded in 1954 and owned by Daewoo until 2010, Ssangyong is a one of the leading auto manufacturers in Korea. After its acquisition by the Indian auto giant Mahindra & Mahindra in 2010, the Indo-Koreans launched a luxury segment Sports Utility Vehicle in Auto expo 2012 and tagged it as Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton. M&M already has XUV 500 under it which sold like hot cakes in 2011. But they claim that this 7-seater SUV will be altogether a difference experience. The SUV is competing with only one Indian competitor, Tata Safari Storme at this stage and may likely get competition from other SUVs like Renault Koleos, Honda CR-V and Hyundai Santa fe. By far, Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton is the most expensive product by M&M ranging between 18.4-20.6 lakhs.
M&M have not left a single stone unturned while designing the exterior of Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton. The overall structure of the car renders an aerodynamic and sleek shape. From the front, the long sloping bonnet with 4 ridges, bold front grille in the form of three horizontally placed chrome plates endorsing the Ssangyong logo, aggressive hawk eye shaped headlamp cluster, body shaped front bumper with integrated long and sleek horizontally placed fog lamps on either sides with turn indicators, large centrally located hexagonal meshed air dam, carbon colored skid plate and the prominent windshield with panoramic sunroof, all add up to the get up of the car.
From the side, Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton gets a long, sturdy and an aggressive look with features like body colored door handles and outside rear view mirrors (ORVMs) with arrow shaped turn indicators, bold wheel fenders, 16 inch alloy wheels with tubeless radial tires, silver colored roof rails, shark fin antenna on the rear portion of the roof and stainless steel side steps between the front and rear wheels. At the rear the SUV is adorned with rear spoiler with high mount stop lamp, huge wraparound windscreen integrated with rear washer and wiper with defogger, large tail lamp cluster with reversed ‘L’ shaped parking lights, rear bumper posing the rear reflectors and the word ‘REXTON’ engraved on it and chrome finished rear exhaust pipes. Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton measures 4755mm in length, 1900mm in width and 1840mm in height with a ground clearance of 252mm.
Where the exteriors of Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton are incredible and outstanding, the interiors are lavish and elegant. The small yet classy dashboard houses the central console with the touch screen infotainment system, the simple and outdated instrument panel and the high quality air condition vents. The dual color combination of beige and black gives it a rich and elegant look. Interior features include leather wrapped four spoke steering wheel having controls for gear shifting, hand brake, audio and cruise control, premium quality leather upholstery on the lumbar supported seats, 60:40 foldable rear seats, electrically foldable and adjustable ORVMs and IRVM, independent blowers for all seat rows, ample storage space (cup holders, armrest, sunglass holder, door pockets, front glove box, etc.), sun visors, fully automatic sunroof, adequate leg space for first and second row of seats, but small legroom for the last row.
Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton comes only in two transmission variants; manual (5-seater RX5) and automatic (7-seater RX7). Both the variants are run on a 2.7 liter 5 cylinder direct injected common rail diesel engine capable of producing a displacement of 2696cc. The manual variant can produce a maximum power of 162bhp at 4000rpm and a maximum torque of 340Nm at 1800-3250rpm whereas the automatic variant can generate a peak power of 184bhp at 4000rpm and a peak torque of 402Nm at 1800-3250rpm. The 5-speed transmission gearbox also has the capability of reducing the NVH (Noise, Vibration and Harshness) levels which increase the performance and efficiency of this SUV.
Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton is a class apart when it comes to handling and safety. Handling features include double wishbone coil spring suspension system for the front, rigid axle 5 link coil spring suspension for the rear, ventilated disc brakes, EBD, ABS, traction control, electronic stability program, collision avoidance system and power assisted steering wheel. Safety and security features include airbags for the front row of seats, engine immobilizer, big halogen headlamps and hill descent control.