As part of its plan to increase its traffic in the Australian market, SsangYong has introduced its Kyron SUV at the Melbourne International Auto Show, with intent to distribute.

The bizzarely-styled 'ute (reminiscent of an Aztek/Rodius lovechild, but with somewhat more successful results) is at least well-equipped, sporting 18" wheels, rear parking assist, and anti-lock brakes. Underneath, a 2.0-liter common-rail turbodiesel comes yoked to either a self-cogswapper or automatic (both with five forward ratios) and the Kyron's part-time four-wheel-drive setup boasts a two-speed transfer box for minor Outback excursions. A larger 2.7-liter TD and a 3.2-liter gasoline six-cylinder are also expected to reach Australian shores.

Ssangyong's Down Under initiative is part of an almost $1.5 billion dollar (U.S.) infusion by majority shareholder Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC), which company officials claim will result in 10 new models by 2010, including a range of SUVs, sedans and a people mover.

SsangYong hopes to shift about 100 Kyrons a month in Australia, with an MSRP at $34,490 (that's about $25,500 to you Americans out there).

[Source: CarPoint AU]

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