History of Ssang Yong automobile company dates back to 1954. Then В«Hadongwahn Motor CoВ» was founded in South Korea. Initially the company focused in production of public buses, chassis for medium-duty trucks and truck tractors. Model line of the company included even quarry lorries with capacity over 30 tons. In 1986 В«Hadongwahn Motor РЎРѕВ» company has merged with В«Dong-AВ» company and it was renamed into В«Dong-A Motor Co LtdВ». New company launched Korando offroadsters. The first car was produced in 1986. By the way, Korando is abbreviation of Korean Can Do. Most part of new jeeps was sent to Korean army. The same year automobile company was renamed into В«SsangYong Motor CompanyВ».
1991 is a next stage in company development. This year В«SsangYong Motor CompanyВ» has signed cooperation agreement with В«Mercedes-Benz AGВ». World famous German automaker became an investor of young automobile company after purchase of small interest in В«SsangYong Motor CompanyВ». The company launched production of Mercedes engines and in cooperation with Germans started designing of new cars. Cars under Ssang Yong brand were exported to Europe via В«Mercedes-Benz AGВ» dealers. In 1993 SsangYong Musso model has won popularity in the Old World. South Korean company has managed to attract serious investors for business development, and Changwon city began construction of company's new plant.
Till 1998 В«SsangYong Motor CompanyВ» was independent but Asian economical crisis has predetermined company acquisition by В«Daewoo GroupВ» corporation. However, the new owners stay afloat not for long, and in 2001 SsangYong regained independence. Chinese national SAIC corporation has bought 55.4% shares of В«SsangYong Motor CompanyВ» in December, 2003. At the time production facilities of Ssang Yong allow to produce up to 180,000 cars per year.
Not so long ago SsangYong Rexton cars assembly was launched in Russia.