SsangYong Rexton Tow Test
Focus on Towing by Dean Evans
SsangYong’s Rexton already made a lasting impression with us last issue. We raved about its equipment, ride quality and looks, with a price starting at $59,990 for the Sport, up to $67,990 for the top-spec SPR. The seven-seat Rexton is one of the best SUVs money can buy, and with a 2.2-litre turbo diesel producing 133kW and 440Nm, it really only left us with one unanswered question: can it tow?
So a visit to our friends at the recently opened Kennards Hire, Hamilton, had us sorted with some towing ballast to really give the Rexton a workout. Rated to 3500kg thanks to a solid rear axle – the industry standard amongst the workhorse utes from Ford, Holden and Toyota – the Rexton’s abilities are well beyond what most are likely to use it for, but with a seven-speed auto, hill-start assist and hill descent control, we wanted to challenge it a little more than just a box trailer and furniture.
So Kennards supplied one of its portable power generators, weighing 2000kg including trailer. With two drivers and some gear, we’re closer to 2300kg, which represents around 65 percent of its standard towing capacity.
We toured our standard loop, from Hamilton to Raglan return, mixing motorway, with urban, B-roads, hills and some sharp twists and turns.
Hooking up the trailer came with a slight oddity: with the Rexton SPR’s presence sensor recognising the keyfob was close, it would automatically open the power tailgate. We had to shut it a few times while hooking up the hitch, at least before moving the key to the front seat. Same happens when refuelling. It’s a good system, though the wait time is often a few seconds, and for the amount of times that’s useful – handfuls of shopping or loading up armfuls of gear – it’s often faster to simply press a button. The automatic system is easily disabled, but that’s somewhat defeating the purpose and feature.
The large touchscreen with guidelines makes reversing easy and safe and we’re quickly away and powering down the motorway, marvelling at the Rexton’s pulling power...
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