The History of SsangYong Motor Company
The SsangYong Motor Company is the 4th largest South Korea – based automobile manufacturer. The Company name “SsangYong” means double dragons. The Ha Dong-hwan Motor Workshop was established in January of 1954, the beginnings of the corporation we know as SsangYong Motor Company today. By 1967 the group became Korea’s largest exporter of buses to Vietnam.
SsangYong formerly started out as two separate companies; Ha Dong-hwan Motor Workshop (1954) and Dongbang Motor Co (1962). In start-1963, the two companies merged into the Ha Dong-hwan Motor Co.
In 1964, Hadonghwan Motor group started building jeeps company for the US Army as well as buses and trucks. Starting in 1976, Hadonghwan produced a variety of particular purpose vehicles. Following changing its name to the Dong-A Motor in 1977, it was taken over by the Ssangyong Business Group in 1986 and changed its name to the SsangYong Motor. In 1987, it acquired UK-based specialty car maker Panther Westwinds (1972).
In 1991 SsangYong started a technology partnership business with Daimler-Benz. The contract was for SsangYong Company to develop an SUV with the Mercedes-Benz technology. This was supposedly to allow SsangYong group to gain footholds in new marketplace without having to build their personal infrastructure while giving Mercedes-Benz a competitor in the then-booming SUV bazaar. This resulted in SsangYong Musso, which was sold 1st by Mercedes and later by the SsangYong.
The SsangYong further benefited from this grouping, long after Daimler-Benz (1926) stopped selling the Musso, producing a badge engineered version of Mercedes-Benz MB100, the Istana and using Daimler designs in many other models, including the 2nd-generation Korando , Rexton (transmission), the Kyron and the Chairman H (chassis and transmission).
In 1997, the Daewoo Motors, now Tata Daewoo (2002), bought a controlling stake from the Ssangyong Company, only to sell it off again in 2000, because conglomerate ran into deep financial troubles. In late 2004, the Chinese automobile SAIC took a 51% stake of the SsangYong Motor Company.
In 2010, the Daewoo Motor Sales was dropped by GM. The long-time partner then signed a contract with the SsangYong Company to supply new vehicles to sell (Rodius, Chairman W and Chairman H), in come back for the injection of ₩20 billion ($17.6 million) into car-maker still improving from bankruptcy. The contract is non-exclusive, meaning SsangYong Company will also sell vehicles through personal dealers.
In April 2010, the company released a statement citing interest of three to four local and foreign companies in acquiring SsangYong Motor Corporation, resulting in shares rising by 15%. The SsangYong companies were later revealed to be Mahindra & Mahindra Limited and Ruia Group of India and the SM Aluminum, Seoul Investments and French-owned Renault Samsung of the South Korea. In August 2010, the Mahindra & Mahindra Limited was chosen as the preferred bidder for SsangYong Motor Company.
The SsangYong Motor Company Website: www.smotor.com
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