|SsangYong Motor's Rexton Sports, left, and Rexton Sports Khan / Courtesy of SsangYong Motor|
By Nam Hyun-woo
SsangYong Motor is expecting a sales boost in its SUV-rich lineup, after local regulations on camping car makeovers were lifted amid the growing trend for outdoor activities here, according to industry officials, Wednesday.
In July, the National Assembly passed a revision to the Motor Vehicle Management Act, allowing the customization of cars for the purpose of leisure and livelihood.
Following the revision, cars registered as passenger vehicles can be customized for camping purposes from the first half of next year.
The revision came amid the fast growth of the country's camping market. According to Statistics Korea, the number of Koreans going camping was tallied at 6 million in 2018, showing a tenfold growth from 600,000 in 2011.
The country's camping gear market has also shown sharp growth, with its value standing at 1.7 trillion won ($1.42 billion) last year, up from 20 billion won in 2008.
SsangYong Motor said this is expected to boost its sales, as its SUVs provide fine options which campers find handy for outdoor activities.
According to the company, gaining the most attention from campers are the 5.1-meter-long Rexton Sports and the 5.4-meter-long Rexton Sports Khan pickup trucks.
Along with their scalability for camping gear, their loading capacity and spacious cabin room are appealing for campers who want to makeover their vehicles and sleep in them. For the 2020 version, SsangYong said it improved the two pickups' fuel economy and power by 3 percent.
For customers who prefer glamping, SsangYong said the G4 Rexton large SUV is drawing popularity, as it offers load capacity and ride comfort at the same time. As the flagship model of SsangYong, the G4 Rexton features multiple advanced driver assist technologies including blind spot detection and lane change assist, as well as using suede and other premium material trim for its interior.
For younger customers, the Korando gasoline model and the Tivoli are drawing attention, SsangYong said. This Korando features intelligent adaptive cruise control, which keeps the car inside the lane and at a safe distance from other vehicles. Also, the model won a low-emission car certification, which provides discounts in toll charges and fees for public parking.
"As a growing number of people enjoy camping, they tend to choose SUVs for their trip, because they have the strength of camping vehicles and daily passenger cars at the same time," a SsangYong Motor official said, adding various benefits are available for those purchasing SsangYong vehicles this month.
|Models promote SsangYong Motor's Korando gasoline model. Courtesy of SsangYong Motor|