Used Korean SsangYong SUVs with Mercedes units or a real Japanese Suzuki Jumny can be a good alternative to the new Lada Niva (aka the former Chevrolet Niva)
The new former Shniva will cost customers at least 738,000 rubles today. At the same time, in such a car there will be no air conditioners, no additional seat and windshield heaters, or even fog lights. And what kind of SUV can you count on in this price segment if you consider the secondary market?
For example, the compact Japanese Suzuki Jumny has an excellent reputation. It cannot be said that there are a large number of offers on the secondary market for the sale of this car, although the third generation lasted almost twenty years on the assembly line.
In the spirit of Jimny, it is rather closer to the three-door Lada 4 × 4 and has a number of disadvantages in common with it. These are modest dimensions, a tiny trunk and a weak 85-horsepower 1.3-liter engine. And in the cabin, the level of ergonomics is twenty years ago (although the air conditioner is present even in the “poorest” trim levels.
But those for whom the above features are not so important will get the most reliable and unpretentious real Japanese SUV. The Part-time all-wheel drive system with a switchable front axle and excellent geometric cross-country ability will allow you to feel confident where there are no roads at all, and the compact size will allow you to move comfortably in urban conditions.
For 700-730 thousand, you can find restyled Jumny of 2010-2012 with mileage of 80-150 thousand km, which is only the beginning of the journey for such a reliable car. However, before buying, it is worth doing at least a transmission diagnosis, especially on vehicles with off-road tuning, because sometimes they could be operated in rather harsh conditions.
Who wants a more spacious, richly equipped and dynamic car should pay attention to the Koreans of the SsangYong brand – the Kyron, Actyon and Rexton models. These cars have quite good off-road qualities, as well as a choice of various all-wheel drive transmissions, the most interesting of which is the TOD scheme with a reduction gear and a center differential lock.
However, Sanyeng also has its drawbacks. Despite the widespread use of units from Mercedes-Benz and ZF, “Koreans” do not differ in large resources of parts and reliability. Although there are relatively good configurations with motors 2,3 or 3.2 and with a Mercedes automatic, as well as with a rarer manual transmission, such units can walk without breakdowns and up to 300 thousand km.
Nevertheless, even with successful units, the owner of a Korean SUV will constantly suffer from various problems with fluid leaks, fragile suspension, low gear and steering resource, bursting tubes and tanks and other troubles.
However, Niva’s handy target audience can hardly be frightened by frequent breakdowns – they are no stranger to it. For 700-750 thousand in the secondary market, you can find quite decent copies of the 2012-2014 SssangYong models with runs of 50-100 thousand kilometers.