Ssangyong Philippines just released their latest offerings, namely the Ssangyong Rexton SUV and of course, the Ssangyong Musso Grand 4×4 pickup. While both are fine vehicles worth mentioning, we’ll focus on the Musso Grand 4×4 first.
Available in 3 variants: namely the base 4×2 MT, 4×2 AT and the top-spec 4×4 AT. While it retains the basic shape; the Musso Grand has a notably longer and deeper bed, the largest in its segment. In fact, it’s difficult to get small items on the bed floor from outside the vehicle, proving the taller height of the bed wall.
The Musso Grand 4×4 utilizes the traditional leaf-spring suspension, as opposed to its sibling, the SsangYong Musso 2.2 4×2 AT, which utilizes SUV-like coil springs. While it’s gives out a more rigid ride, it can haul heavier loads. However, it still gives a softer ride, as compared to the competition. 4-wheel disc brakes are on all corners provides stopping power, is standard. The Musso runs on 17in rims and street tires. However, options for off-road tires are limited, as the front double wishbone suspension of the Musso sits a bit lower, compared to other makes.
The Musso Grand is also powered by the popular 2.2L diesel engine with an output of 181 horses. Torque rating is more than enough at 420Nm. Incidentally; the base MT variant has a lower rating of 400Nm. While 2200cc engine might be small on paper, it’s more than enough to propel this small truck faster, even at full load. The 6-speed automatic transmission is engineered to maximize potential of all gears.
We’ve saved the best for last.
Since the Musso is basically a variant of the Rexton, it’s basically an SUV with a pickup bed. Therefore, all amenities of the SUV are present in the Musso. Comfy 2-tone leather seats, with cooling option for the front pair and heating for the rear bench, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, also with heater option and a dual-zone automatic climate AC system, with vents for the second row.
An 8-inch infotainment system with Apple Carplay and Android Auto is standard on the top variant. Other features include automatic headlamps with adjustable leveling, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, speed-sensing power steering and a sunroof. Comfort is the main consideration here.
Oh, did we mention that there is an accessory charger port in the bed?
- Musso base 4×2 Php1,180,000
- Musso mid 4×2 AT Php1,230,000
- Musso 4×4 AT – Php1,650,000
Test drive in Sand and Water
We’ve tested the Musso Grand 4×4 in the sandy but wet Sacobia River, both in High and Low 4×4. The Musso performed flawlessly, with almost no loss of traction despite the street tires. Torque was readily available from 2500 to 3500rpms and the 2.2 engine did not stumble. While wreaking havoc on the terrain, there was nary a sound inside, a testament to quality of bodywor and sound insulation. While larger displacement engine can do more, the Ssangyong Musso can hold its own.
If we were to modify the Musso Grand, we will start with bigger diameter all-terrain tires, lift the front about 2 inches, and replace the front bumper with a smaller angled one, so the Musso’s “angle of approach” is better (climb from a horizontal plane without interference).
Breaking from the traditional pickup mold, the Ssangyong Musso Grand gives more value for money by offering more in their pickup line. The Musso is well worth considering.
For more information, go tour nearest Ssangyong dealer or visit www.ssangyong.ph
The Musso in action!
Text/Images by Earl Manalansan