South Korean car brand SsangYong had already put its foot in the grave and has now been officially declared dead. It now falls under KG Mobility. Also from South Korea and part of the large KG group. The first new logo and model remains KMG Torres. Other SUVs. How does he distinguish himself?
What’s so remarkable about KMG Torres?
The KMG Torres is an SUV in the D segment. It feels like a big boy and it is. Length 4.70 metres. This is longer than one Toyota Rav4 (4.60 m) and is approx Nissan X-Trail (4.68 m). electrical Volvo XC40 Much smaller at 4.42m. We don’t call it that for nothing, because the Taurus that will be coming to the Netherlands from February 2024 is also a fully electric SUV.
The Torres we drove – which you can see in the pictures – was powered by a 1.5-litre turbo petrol engine with 163bhp, without any electric assistance. We will not get this version due to the high RPM that the South Korean SUV is waiting for in our country. That means the Torres is pricing itself out of the market, according to a spokesperson, especially the automatic version we were on the road with.
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The KGM Torres coming our way is an electric SUV with 207bhp and a range of 420-450km (WLTP). The battery (73 kWh total) is of the LFP (iron phosphate) type and comes from the shelves of the Chinese battery giant BYD Which also works on developing and building electric cars.
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What’s good about KMG Torres?
The KGM (not to be confused with the Russian KGB) is a roomy SUV. Even those sitting in the back seat have enough room for their knees and heads. The seating position is good, although it’s questionable whether this also applies to the electric version that carries a battery pack. The back seat can be a little high at times.
The luggage compartment is also in good condition and holds 703-1662 litres. The driver and passenger also have ample storage space for all kinds of items such as a smartphone, water bottle or notepad. The card spaces are remarkably large and therefore very easy to use.
While driving the Torres, it’s surprising how quiet the SUV is. There’s no wind noise from the large outside mirrors, and the petrol engine is barely audible. For a moment we thought we were driving the electric version.
The bodywork did not budge on Belgian roads, which – as you no doubt know – are sometimes in very poor condition. The KMG Torres feels very solid and provides plenty of comfort. Overall, a very nice travel car
What can be improved at KMG Torres?
The KMG Torres is practical and comfortable. Handling is okay but not overtly sporty. As soon as you enter the corner, you will feel movement in the car’s body. That’s not a problem, but if you’re looking for more driving dynamics, you’re better off shopping next door.
The interior is well designed, but not all materials are equally attractive. We see hard plastic here and there (including near the map compartments) and the glossy black panel around the arm of the machine also looks a bit cheap. What we like is the beige covering of the dashboard and door panels, which is also available in olive green. The dashboard looks a bit cluttered due to the different materials, colours, numerous buttons on the steering wheel and the three digital displays. But in any case it is not uniform.
This is a bit strange, but we were bothered by the strange sound the turn signal made. Our passenger had it too, so it wasn’t just us. What we also find strange is the shape of the steering wheel. You get used to everything, but why not?
What is the price of KMG Torres?
The version we drove – the Torres 1.5 T-GDi – could be written on your stomach in the Netherlands. We drove it anyway to get a first impression of the space, quality and interior. The Torres is available with a petrol engine in Germany. There it costs 47,490 euros as a two-wheel drive version.
For that amount, you get several driver assistance systems, a heated steering wheel, heated front and rear seats, a power liftgate, a 9-inch touchscreen with navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (non-wireless), and a 12.5-inch digital instrument The block (with a very illogical design), keyless entry and 20-inch alloy wheels.
The price of Torres EVX is not yet known. The Torres electric car also features a different front design with a strip of LED lighting running across the full width of the nose. The dashboard consists of two large displays that merge into each other.
What is my opinion on KMG Torres?
My expectations were not high. Other SUVs. From a dying brand. But with Torres, everything has to change for the former SsangYong. It might be possible, because it’s not the car. KGM Torres is spacious, functional, well built and fully equipped. It drives remarkably quietly and provides plenty of comfort.
It’s also a great thing to see. In any case, it is not in vain. I like the handles on the hood, the spare wheel at the back – which isn’t actually a spare wheel but a design feature – the thick, aluminum-coloured C-pillar and the chunky design.
It remains to be seen how Torres EVX drives. However, the petrol version drives well. It’s a shame for KGM that it won’t come to the Netherlands due to the high BPM volume (20k for the auto version), because there are definitely business opportunities.
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