SsangYong Tivoli XLV (2016) Review
SsangYong Tivoli XLV (2016) At A Glance
The SsangYong Tivoli XLV falls tantalisingly short of being one of the best value crossovers you can buy. It offers practicality in spades, a comprehensive list of standard equipment and an extremely competitive price. Launched in 2016 and updated in 2018, the Tivoli XLV is like a Nissan Qashqai with the boot space of a Dacia Logan MCV. Sounds like a match made in heaven, but the car is let down by slightly awkward styling and a pair of inefficient 1.6-litre engines. That’s not to say that the Tivoli XLV isn’t worth a look, because few cars offer such a compelling blend of price and practicality.
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‘Extra-long vehicle’. That’s what the XLV in the SsangYong Tivoli XLV stands for. Don’t worry, you’re not going to require a detailed logistics report before venturing into the city, but the XLV is longer than the standard SsangYong Tivoli.
If you haven’t heard of the Tivoli, it’s a thoroughly competent compact crossover with a comprehensive list of standard equipment, a long warranty and a spacious cabin. The Tivoli XLV takes all of the car’s strengths and weaknesses, but adds a bigger boot. It’s what would happen if a compact crossover had intimate relations with a small estate car.
Which means it’s hard to pigeonhole the SsangYong Tivoli XLV. On the one hand it’s a rival to cars like the Nissan Qashqai, Suzuki Vitara and MG ZS, but it’s also a competitor to the cavernous Dacia Logan MCV estate car.
Put it this way: you’re unlikely to need more space than you’ll find in the Tivoli XLV. The boot is large, there’s room in the cabin for five adults, and there are plenty of storage pockets and compartments. Pound-for-pound, you won’t find a better value crossover with this amount of space.
There’s also a very long list of standard equipment. Because the Tivoli XLV only comes in the lavish Ultimate trim, nothing is left on the options list. Stylish 18-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, keyless start, heated seats, seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are just some of the features that are making us sweat over our allocated word-count.
It gets better, because all this could cost as little as £20,000 if you opt for the 1.6-litre petrol version, but no more than £23,000, even if you opt for the 1.6-litre diesel with an automatic transmission. A cavernous crossover for the price of a top-end small hatch – where do we sign?
As you might have guessed, there are one or two drawbacks. Starting with the engines, which lack the efficiency, smoothness and punch of the modern breed of small turbocharged engines. The combination of high CO2 emissions and only reasonable fuel economy puts a large dent in the car’s appeal.
Then there’s the interior, which is okay for the price, but lacks the fit and finish of the car’s Japanese and European competitors. It’s likely to be hard-wearing, but the plastics feel cheap and hollow, so you’re advised to keep your hands on the key touch-points, which feel reasonably good. We’d also argue that the Tivoli XLV looks a little awkward from some angles.
If nothing else, we’d recommend adding the Tivoli XLV to your shortlist. If you can live with the car’s obvious shortcomings, you’ll appreciate the extra-long benefits.