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Ssangyong Tivoli Test Drive Review

Date: 09 September 2015   |   Author:

Category: Crossover
Key rival: Nissan Juke
P11D: £17,195
On sale: September 2015

Ssangyong may be something of a mystery to most Brits, but the Tivoli should change that, battling against the immensely popular Nissan Juke. With bold styling, low prices and a new diesel engine, the Tivoli could help the Korean brand make a greater impact in the fleet market.

On the road, the steering and throttle are very responsive, while the relatively firm ride gives this crossover a surprisingly sporty feel, which is added to by sharp brakes and heavy steering when in 'Sport' mode (although lighter 'Comfort' and 'Normal' modes are available).

Despite this, the Tivoli is no sports car, rolling around corners more than the stiff suspension would suggest, but it does remain relatively comfortable, with only big bumps making themselves felt.

The gearbox in our test car was mostly easy enough to use, although fourth gear wasn't always particularly willing to engage.

The diesel motor can't match rivals for refinement - becoming gruff when worked hard - but it does offer plenty of pull from low engine speeds, making it feel faster than the figures suggest. High road and wind noise levels mean the Tivoli isn't the quietest motorway companion, however.

Where the Tivoli does win back points, though, is inside, with space for six-footers in the rear and a
high-quality feel.

We drove a top-specification ELX model, which costs just over £17,000. Thanks to poor residuals of just 25.7%, depreciation is greater than with the near-£20,000 Nissan Juke, Peugeot 2008 and Skoda Yeti equivalents. Similarly, the Tivoli's 65.7mpg economy is strong, but lags behind the 76.3mpg Peugeot 2008 and 70.6mpg Juke.

Consequently, the 44.3p per mile figure for the Ssangyong is beaten by the faster and more economical Juke 1.5dCi Tekna (42.8p) and even more economical and sprightly 2008 1.6 BlueHDI 120 Allure (42.6p).

While the Tivoli boasts a huge amount of kit for the price and a comfortable, spacious cabin, its running costs mean that rivals remain a more obvious choice for most business users.

Ssangyong Tivoli 1.6e-XDI 115 ELX

Model price range £12,950-£19,500
Residual value 25.7%
Depreciation £12,770
Fuel £4804
Service, maintenance and repair £2468
Vehicle Excise Duty £60
National Insurance £1424
Cost per mile 44.3p
Fuel consumption 65.7mpg
CO2 (BIK band) 113g/km
BIK 20/40% per month £57/£115
Warranty 5yrs/unlimited miles
Boot space (min/max) 423/1115 litres
Engine size/power 1597cc/115hp


A strong, value crossover let down by low refinement levels and poor RVs
  • A BIK rate of 20% is competitive, while the Tivoli is packed with standard kit
  • Low residuals mean more expensive rivals offer lower whole-life costs