2011 SsangYong Actyon Q100 4x4 dual cab 2.0 litre turbo diesel from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

Well engineered, well built, and a pleasure to drive

Faults:

Nothing.

General Comments:

I bought this car very cheaply as it was a "repairable write-off" from a mining company. It had spent two years and 85000k at a iron ore mine in the hot desert, until it was accidentally driven into a ditch and then written-off by the insurance company.

This is a list of the damage sustained and the condition of the vehicle when I got it:

1. Both engine mounts cracked and gave way from the vertical drop into the ditch.

2. The engine sump/oil pan was holed, as the engine fell onto the front diff housing as the engine mounts broke.

3. Radiator fractured due to the impact and the engine dropping 100cm onto the diff.

4. Air-bags and seatbelts deployed due to the impact.

5. Windscreen cracked due to passenger air-bag deploying.

6. The body work was "straight", but the paintwork was pitted on the front from following other vehicles on gravel roads.

7. Chassis and under-carriage extensively 'sand-blasted' from driving on gravel roads. Even the plastic mudflaps had worn away.

8. Surface rust only on the bare metal exposed.

9. Every nook and cranny underneath was jam packed with red gravel, sand and dust.

10. The cab interior was dusty with sand and gravel up to 25mm thick in the foot well (more on that later).

11. Transmission gear selection out of alignment. As you can see, it had a hard life.

12. Front brake rotors worn out from the abrasive and acidic environment.

13. The eight bolts mounting the cab to the chassis were bent 30 degrees and the cab was about 20mm forward, so there were some horizontal forces involved in the impact.

14. Torn lower control arm bush.

I was told that the engine still ran, but I did not know the extent of any internal engine or transmission damage, so I was keen but worried to find out ASAP, and I had no intention of dismantling them to find out. Using second hand parts I replaced everything, and much to my relief, the engine and transmission had no problems.

I felt confident I could re-register the vehicle, so I replaced all filters and fluids, new disc rotors, second-hand 'crash-kit' for the dash, air-bags, seat belts and crash CPU, and a new windscreen. I extensively pressure blasted, scraped and cleaned the underneath of the vehicle (several times) and estimate I removed three buckets of dirt from the chassis rails alone. Repainted all the bare metal with several cans of anti-rust spray paint.

I then stripped out the entire cab and doors to remove dust, dirt and gravel, and had to replace the dash, air-bags and seat belts. This is where I really started to see the great quality of manufacture; the dust ingress was very minor and had only come from a body grommet on the floor that had not been refitted properly when wiring had been retrofitted in Australia for mining duties (not Ssangyong). The gravel and dirt in the foot-wells had only come in from the workers' boots. The pollen filter was thick with red dust and I simply washed it out. This car had remained sealed as tight as a drum, even after two years of corrugated gravel roads; I was impressed! To take this point even further, the car does not rattle or squeak, and I have not detected any fatigue in brackets and hinges etc. Two years is a long time for a passenger vehicle to be on a mine-site in Australia!

I eventually got the vehicle examined and registered, and it is my daily drive. It is very quiet and very smooth, and drives like a sedan. I have had no problems with it, and I would buy another without hesitation.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th January, 2015

2013 SsangYong Actyon from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

You get what you pay for

Faults:

Transmission slips and sticks in gear sometimes when slowing down. Been back to dealership for this, but they have yet to rectify it

General Comments:

Ugliest and stupidest looking vehicle on the road, but they are cheap... which is why my boss bought a few of them as company cars (maybe he wanted to punish us for not making him enough money?). It drives well, though it is not very fuel efficient for a diesel. Mine average 9.5 litres per 100km in mixed driving. By comparison, my 2001 Saab 9-3 high output turbo petrol averages 7.4 litres per 100km.

The Actyon is cheap and reasonably well equipped, but for a few grand more you could have a much better Mitsu Triton

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 26th September, 2013

9th Jul 2014, 10:47

You are making a very poor comparison between a ute and a passenger car. A ute weighs around 2000 kg, whereas your Saab would be around 1250 kg. Weight has a massive effect on fuel economy. You should be pleased you are averaging what you do.

You say a Mitsi would be better, but how so? The Actyon has a better interior, and you cannot seriously claim a Triton is better looking. The Actyon sports a 6 speed auto, rides better, and can tow a respectable 2300 kg.

10th Jul 2014, 08:29

Pickup trucks (or utes), as well as commercial vans (like a Toyota Hi-Ace or a Mitsubishi Delica/L300) are geared differently, to be able to pull heavy loads up hills, so they will not be fast, and they will use more fuel.

16th Jul 2014, 17:06

I also own one of these Actyon Sports, bought it in 2012. After 50,000 KM the transmission slips very often or is stuck in the default gear. Took it to the repair shop, they replaced the clutch kit, however the problem still exists. I am totally frustrated, as I am unable to determine what is the cause or to have the problem resolved.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

15th Sep 2014, 11:40

Hello,

Regarding the transmission problem, it sounds similar to what my brother's 2011 model with similar km is doing.

If you find the solution, can you please post it here?

Thanks and good luck.

22nd Mar 2015, 12:10

Are you talking about the automatic or the manual model here?

The 6 speed autos (the AUSTRALIAN made DSI units) are duds. They are prone to slipping and being a general pain in the butt. This is no doubt why Ford and Holden both unceremoniously dumped DSI from their supplier list - owners of those vehicles have reported the same problems.