The SsangYong Musso doesn't exactly fit your bog-standard definition of a pickup. It has softer curves more suited to cityscapes rather than dirt roads or worksites. It's wheel arches aren't flared to give it an aggressive look. It prefers to look sleek and refined rather than aggressive. It is, after all, based on an SUV before becoming a pickup truck.
Enter the Musso Grand. The bigger brother of the standard Musso. The exterior of both are almost identical save for a couple of minor details and the huge bed at the back. So let’s get on to it and discuss the differences between the two.
The power plant between the Musso and its Grand variant is the same. They share the 2.2-liter engine and 6-speed Aisin transmission. While the Grand is slightly slower thanks to the weight of its four-wheel-drive system, performance is about the same.
On the exterior is where the differences between the two become a little more evident. For starters, the Musso Grand comes with auto on/off HID headlights while the regular Musso comes with halogen bulbs. They do share the same LED DRLs. The regular Musso comes with bigger sized wheels compared to its Grand variant. The regular Musso gets 18-inch wheels while its longer variant gets 17-inch wheels.
Where the true difference lies is in the suspension and the bed. The Musso Grand comes with leaf spring suspension at the rear. It’s the best suspension to handle heavy loads pretty well. For its class, the Musso Grand actually has the biggest bed measuring in at 65 inches in length, 63 inches in width, and 23.5 inches in depth. That's practically a small jacuzzi in terms of space, plus it comes with an accessory port in the back.
The interior and its features are the same across the Musso and its Grand variant, save for the exception of the drive train selector right below the shifter. The Musso Grand, after all, has a part-time four-wheel-drive option. The regular Musso, on the other hand, only comes in a rear-wheel-drive configuration.
When the time comes to travel off the beaten path, the Musso Grand, despite its city slicker looks, does well. The engine is strong enough to get the behemoth going without the need to floor the throttle. The vehicle doesn't feel heavy either in 4x4 mode. It has a gentle way of climbing obstacles without too much drama. The traction control balances the power and grip well. It allows the vehicle to get up to speed without losing traction. When you want to have a little fun, the Musso Grand lets the rear slide out within reason. If the pickup detects that the traction loss is too much it immediately cuts power and applies the brakes to certain wheels to regain traction.
When it comes to the twisties, here is where the Grand gets a couple of drawbacks. The rear live axle makes it hard to predict where the bed is going to go on bumpy roads. The regular Musso, thanks to its 5-link suspension makes the vehicle easier to control and predict. The ride on the Musso Grand is also stiff due to the leaf spring suspension. It can be jarring when the road has quick and successive bumps but when conditions improve, the ride is smooth, comfortable, and predictable.
With both of the variants being roughly the same, the deciding factor is purpose. If you want a pickup that can carry large and heavy objects, then the Musso Grand is a good choice. On the other hand, if you prefer a shorter bed and don’t need the four-wheel-drive option, then the regular Ssangyong Musso fits the bill. Whether it’s the regular Musso or the Musso Grand, with the value for money they offer, it’s hard not to consider them as an option.
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