2008 SsangYong Stavic SV270 SPR Review & Road Test
If you're more of a features person, Stavic may suit you down to the ground
Full of Features, Smooth Auto Transmission, Roomy second Row
Awkward Appearance, Rough and Noisy Ride, Quality Issues
- by Matt Brogan
To kick things off, let's tackle the big one, the not too delicate matter of Stavics' polarising looks. With large headlights and somewhat classy chrome grille the Mercedes influenced front end is almost bearable in isolation, and if you were to see the car solely from the front you could almost be forgiven for thinking it’s quite smart to look at. But start to get a little profile in to the picture, or worse still wander round the back, and everything just becomes a little Pablo Picasso.
The rear window is of particular intrigue, almost seeming like a wedge of glass has been sat atop the curved rear window to form a wagon. It’s a bizarre design but not only does it make for a peculiar exterior, it also deprives the rear passengers from seeing out while at the same time hindering the driver's blind spot.
Luggage space is disappointing considering the overall size of the vehicle too and I think that if you were to head away with seven people and their gear for even a weekend then you'd struggle to find a place for it all.
The centrally mounted instrumentation display appears cheap and suffers inaccuracy due to parallax error. Furthermore its vivid green back lighting cannot be dimmed at night which makes for a disconcerting glow in your peripheral vision.
But for all the downsides surely the state of the art common rail turbo diesel engine must provide some relief, or at least decent fuel economy right?
Sadly though it can do nothing to recover the fuel economy figures which although claimed to be 8.7-litres per 100km combined, were in reality a shocking 18.6 litres average round town and 10.0 on the open road (seven people on board - no luggage).
Dual wishbone front end and ten point multi-link rear suspension is rather stiffly sprung affair and seemingly counteractive to the rigid chassis. It’s hard to file smoothly through corners without rear end drift and the extended ratio rack and pinion steering does little to sharpen response.
The ESP too is quite well sorted and is neither overly sustained nor brutal in its approach to sorting your directional control, meaning you can still maintain momentum rather than being brought to a complete halt before setting off again.
Curiously some of these features whilst good on the outset are a little flawed in execution. Take for example the speed activated locks. Although common place in many cars these days, on Stavic they don’t activate until 60km/h. So close to home I managed to drive all the way to the shops (50km/h zone), stop at several intersections, park and jump out, all without the feature having activated.
Keeping you safe are dual front airbags, ESP, traction control and ABS with Electronic Brake Force Distribution, though side and curtain airbags don’t make the list, even as an option. But perhaps of most concern I was unable to find an ANCAP or Euro NCAP rating with even the NHTSA listing the crash test as 'not available'.
CarAdvice Overall Rating:
How does it Drive:
How does it Look:
How does it Go: