Fleet News

Daewoo rebadges former SsangYong models for UK

THE name of SsangYong has ceased to exist in the UK car market. Daewoo, which acquired a 53.5% controlling interest in the fellow Korean motor company in January, has made it clear that it will take over both its existing UK models and refine and rebadge them.

The first fruits of Daewoo's takeover of SsangYong are the four-wheel-drive Korando and Musso models which went on sale on March 11 in showrooms alongside Daewoo's existing range of family saloons, estates and hatchbacks.

Their arrival broadens the company's appeal and potential market penetration. SsangYong has an annual production capacity of 200,000 units and already exports to 110 countries. The aim is to be exporting to 190 countries by the millennium. Both the Korando and Musso have previously been on sale in the UK under the SsangYong badge, but Daewoo has 'refreshed' them, mainly cosmetically.

Daewoo expects to double SsangYong sales. Before the takeover it was selling around 600 units a year in the UK. The Daewoo name is expected to boost residuals, but to protect them further the company will limit the number of Korando and Musso going into the used car market. The number of demonstrators will be kept to an absolute minimum and there will be very few available to employees.

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