Car Review: SsangYong - Rodius  Series 05 (2 stars)

The SsangYong Rodius will seat seven in comfort, but they won't want to be seen getting out.

The SsangYong Rodius is perhaps the best known of the Korean company's cars, but for all the wrong reasons. It is celebrated across the country for being the ugliest car on sale, which is quite hard to dispute. It has been a long time since any manufacturer produced something so wilfully ugly and expected people to take to it.

The Rodius is a great sagging beast of a car, with a rear end that looks like it has had an attic conversion put in. This car sails past quirky (see the Fiat Multipla) and onto shame-faced embarrassment. Of course, the starting price of just under £15,000 might help you look past appearances and see the value within.

Not that there's really a great deal - you get what you pay for when it comes to cars, and the interior quality of the Rodius isn't what you'd expect from a family car of this size. Plastics feel hard and brittle - it is plain to see that the company has not been able to invest a great deal of money on the car.

The Rodius is well-suited to motorway cruising, but the wallowing suspension will likely leave passengers feeling quite queasy if you opt to drive along something with more corners. The suspension is set far too soft, and doesn't make any effort at all to reign in the car's weight through a bend.

It's not so practically around town, either - you'll need tug boats to help guide you into a parking space and the Rodius doesn't get enthusiastic about urban driving. The positive side of the soft suspension is a comfortable ride which absorbs all the bumps the road can throw in your way, but that can only be appreciated if you're not feeling seasick.

The biggest point in favour of the Rodius is the cavernous amount of space you'll find inside - there is plenty of room for seven people plus a reasonable amount of luggage. There's a Korean version on sale with eleven seats in it, so you'll at least appreciate the amount of legroom on offer in this one.

If you need lots of seats and can't stump up for a minibus or decent-sized MPV then the Rodius makes a minor case for itself - personally we would check the classifieds, because this SsangYong provides the sort of bargain basement shudders we've not seen for a long time in this country.

SsangYong Rodius Series 05 StatisticsCar Reviews

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