With the rising popularity of car camping in South Korea, the size of pickup truck market in the country has surged in recent years, up from around 22,000 vehicles sold in 2017 to 42,000 in 2018.
The trend has spread further with the COVID-19 pandemic with more people opting for outdoor and social-distancing activities that require larger storage and stronger off-road driving capacity.
Leading the segment is SsangYong Motor’s Rexton Sports, which has pioneered the Korean market for open-deck sports utility vehicles since 2018.
Since its launch, a total of 41,717 units have been sold in 2018, and 41,326 in 2019. As of April this year, 27 months into its introduction, the sales surpassed the 100,000 units.
Rexton Sports shares the premium interior and specifications of SsangYong’s flagship sport utility vehicle G4 Rexton.
Targeting both adventure and daily driving, Rexton can operate in a two-wheel drive mode in normal driving conditions and four-wheel drive mode for worse weather conditions and off-road experience.
The vehicle has dynamic suspension, off-road undercover and off-road side step to improve off-road driving performance. It provides a maximum of 187 horsepower and 40.8 kilogram-meters of torque.
Its cargo space is also one of the strong features for those needing to carry hefty gears for outdoor activities.
It boasts a wheel base of 3,100 millimeters, a full length of 5,095 millimeters and a full width of 1,950 millimeters.
Rexton Sports Khan, which is more spacious than Rexton Sports, has a wheel base of 3,210 millimeters, a full length of 5,405 millimeters and a full width of 1,950 millimeters. Khan’s deck with an increased capacity by 24.8 percent from Rexton Sports can be loaded up to 700 kilograms.
The 2020 Rexton Sports is priced from 24.19 million won ($20,392) to 32.6 million won while the 2020 Rexton Sports Khan is sold at the price between 27.95 million won and 35.1 million won.
“The Rexton Sports Series is specialized for outdoor activities. With its unique design, ample cargo space and diverse convenience features, it has been receiving positive reviews in both domestic and overseas markets,” SsangYong Motor said.
This year, the vehicle received the “2020 Pickup of the Year” award by the British magazine 4X4 for two consecutive years. It was also cited as the best pickup — among less than 12,700-kilogram pickups — by another UK automobile magazine What Car this year.