The Ssangyong Korando S petrol has launched in Australia, introducing a new low-cost entry-level variant to the compact SUV range and ending the South Korean manufacturer’s long-running diesel-only local strategy.

Priced from $23,990 driveaway, the petrol-powered Ssangyong Korando S undercuts the base model Korando diesel by $2300, making it one of the cheapest SUVs on the market.

While the bargain basement Chery J11 is untouchable at $17,990, the new Ssangyong Korando S petrol matches the price of the Great Wall X240 and undercuts the list prices of more established players like the Nissan Dualis and the Mitsubishi ASX by $1000 and $2000 respectively.

Under the bonnet of the Korando S petrol sits a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine producing 109kW and 191Nm. With a combined cycle fuel consumption rating of 6.2 litres per 100km for the six-speed manual, the petrol model is bettered by its diesel counterpart by just 0.1L/100km – although the petrol is also 20kW/169Nm adrift in terms of engine output. A six-speed automatic is available as a $2000 option.

Standard features include cruise control, Bluetooth phone connectivity, reversing sensors and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Six airbags and electronic stability control are also standard, as is Ssangyong’s five-year/100,000km warranty and five-year roadside assistance.

The Korando is Ssangyong’s top-selling model in Australia and the introduction of the entry-level petrol variant is expected to see volume grow significantly. Ssangyong sold 750 Korandos across the country in 2012, up 20 per cent over the previous year.

Neville Crichton, the owner of Ssangyong’s new Australian distributor, Ateco Automotive, said the positioning of the Korando petrol model was an expression of “the huge commitment that both Ssangyong and Ateco are making to ensure the success of the brand in Australia”.

The Korando S petrol becomes Ssangyong Australia’s first petrol model since the brand adopted its audacious diesel-only strategy in 2008. The company signalled its intentions to move away from the hard-line stance in 2011 when it changed its slogan from ‘We live diesel’ to ‘A lot of car, a little price’.

The brand is looking at other non-diesel options beyond the compact SUV range too, currently considering a 3.2-litre petrol engine for the next-generation Stavic, which is a chance to reach local showrooms before the end of the year.

  • Zaccy16

    you would have to be really desperate to consider one of these or any of the chinese suv’s! there are lots and lots of better used cars for 24,000!

    • Aazz

      A bit harsh grouping the Korando with the rubbish coming out of China. It actually looks alright for a Ssangyong.

      • $29896495

        I’ve seen one of these in the metal in the street a few months back and I can tell you, it is a very nicely put together car. Almost exactly the same size as a Focus so comparing it to larger SUVs is a bit unfair. Pricing as such still isn’t cheap. But it does appear to be well styled and nicely put together. 

        Again the Stavic will pull the brand backwards again. They used to run on Mercedes chassis and engines, one reason for the higher price, don’t know where they get the engine now.

  • Westie

    There goes Ssangyong. Prices will be up and down, models dropped, marketing non existent.
    Why do makers bother?

  • Sturmgewehr

    the sx4 awd is a far better option. its lighter, more power, same torque, same price and its made by same guys that make the gsxr 750

  • Blair Waldorf

    The Guigiaro/Italdesign styling on these looks great, both in person and in pictures. While I’d take one over anything out of china, it’s not worth the gamble.

    I also wonder how that petrol engine is so efficient? 6.2l/100km from a 2.0l without start/stop and stuff? This car is also pretty heavy so I doubt it’s that efficient.

  • Kiran SB

    ‘ a lot of car, a little price’ is a horrible slogan – it doesn’t exactly invoke feelings of sturdiness or quality. They shouldn’t use the term Car as a quantifiable object. it works for appliances, not for cars. We live diesel really is miles better, even if they also make petrol cars, they are experts in something. Not some silly equation: lots for little—— its a 23,000 thousand dollar purchase DUH

    • Frank

      Kiran SB, great comment but you’ve spoiled it by stating that it’s a 23,000,000 dollar purchase! (23,000 thousand)…..DUH…..sorry couldn’t help myself.

    • Al Tungupon

      “A lot of car for a lot less” should have cut it.

    • $29896495

      I don’t know about recently but they used to use Mercedes engines.

  • Peter Ms

    I would imagine that the car will struggle with a petrol engine.  While these cars are sturdy, they are also quite heavy.  And who picked that colour?! 

    • $29896495

      It’s quite a small car. (small medium)

  • Hung Low

    They have always had issues with spares and replacement parts, but the quality and Diesel engines are pretty good.

  • Kyronowner

    I have a Korando diesel and comparing a Ssangyong to a chinese made car is like comparing a Toyota to a Bentley – there is absolutely nothing in common with them except that they are cars. Ssangyong is a sadly misunderstood name brand here in Aussie and the cars are far better than most give them credit for. I know because I currently own a Korando and a Kyron and I had a Musso before that. Every single one of them has been top notch in terms of build quality and reliability. 

  • Garry M

    I have Ssangyong Korando 2011 with 49000 Kms pulling a 2oooKg full size caravan witch it does with ease not one fault returning 10-9 L per 100 Km I have had many new cars and this is defjnately the best and most reliable