SsangYong Musso – best pick-up trucks

SsangYong Musso – best pick-up trucks

SsangYong Musso - best pick-up trucks

The SsangYong Musso is really more of an update to the SsangYong Korando Sports, but the changes go deeper than just the obvious new nose and new name. The biggest change is the new 2.2-litre diesel engine. It’s received a bump in power, pushing it up from 153bhp in the Korando Sports to 176bhp in the Musso – and it’s now Euro 6 compliant, too.

As well as power, economy has improved, with manual models now achieving a claimed 40mpg on the combined cycle. Opt for the automatic and that drops to 37mpg, but that’s still a competitive figure.

The updated engine is less rattly than its predecessor and quite refined most of the time, though it can’t disguise the Musso’s commercial vehicle status. It offers flexible performance, despite suffering from some turbo-lag at low revs, and there’s definitely ample pulling power to make the most of the Musso’s 3,000kg towing limit and 1,075kg payload. However, the Musso has a shorter load bed than most double cab rivals, limiting its versatility somewhat.

The decent engine and gearbox are let down by the Musso’s steering, though. It’s city-car light and completely lacking in feedback, which isn’t reassuring on tight and winding country roads. Despite multi-link rear suspension that’s sophisticated for a pick-up truck, the ride is bouncy – even when fully weighted down with a tonne in the load bed.

The interior design is less than impressive. Controls are laid out anywhere and everywhere, with a central column of four identical knobs controlling the seat heaters, switchable four-wheel drive and the angle of the headlamps. Meanwhile, the foglights are consigned to a cluster with the electric mirror controls off to one side, and the ‘trip reset’ switch takes pride of place high up on the dash. You’d get used to it eventually, but we would have liked to see a more intuitive layout.

Materials inside aren’t quite up to scratch either. With competitors like the Nissan Navara fitting in ever more car-like interiors, the Musso’s cheap and hollow-feeling plastics don’t quite cut it. At least everything feels hard-wearing, and the wipe-clean upholstery should prove easier to keep tidy than the cloth fitted to many rivals.

SsangYong’s effort is behind the current pick-up curve in many respects but it’s affordable with a starting price under £20,000 for a double cab model. It’s hard to argue with that.

The best pick-up trucks to buy now

  1. 1.Mitsubishi L200
  2. 2.Fiat Fullback
  3. 3.Nissan Navara
  4. 4.Mercedes X-Class
  5. 5.Volkswagen Amarok
  6. 6.Toyota Hilux
  7. 7.Ford Ranger
  8. 8.Isuzu D-Max
  9. 9.SsangYong Musso

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