Ssangyong Tivoli

Posted on: 3rd November, 2015

Category: Car Reviews

Contributor: Sean Creedon

It was Brendan Behan who said that there is no such thing as bad publicity. And since another famous Dubliner Bill Cullen ended his connections with Renault, both Bill and his partner Jackie Lavin are seldom out of the news. The pair are never shy about talking up their new venture, a Ssangyong dealership at Bluebell on the Naas Road out of Dublin.

Bill has survived the downturn and so has the Korean company; they were saved by a huge investment from Indian conglomerate Mihandra and Mihandra , who acquired a 70 per cent share in the debt-ridden company four years ago.

Ssangyong, who returned to Ireland in 2013 after a five-year absence, has a reputation for building huge, powerful diesel people carriers, most of which were not very pretty, but functional. You may be familiar with the Korando, Rodius and Rexton. Now they have introduced their first car since the take over and last week I got to test drive the Tivoli.

I was expecting a saloon or hatchback. So I was a bit surprised to pick up a mid-size SUV instead. But it has its own name, Tivoli. Now that’s a good start. I like cars that have their own name, not a Ssangyong ZX1 or Ssangyong ABC2.

The Tivoli is a high vehicle with a boxy-look to it and you will enjoy the view over the hedgerows. I’m told it’s aimed at the 25-35 age group and especially women. Now I can see some men going for one, but I think ladies might take a bit more time to be won over as there is huge competition out there with attractive mid-size SUVs.

At the front the design doesn’t really grab your attention; it’s fairly bland and only has the logo to give it a lift. It’s unusual to say, but the tail end seems to have a more attractive design.

Inside there is plenty of leg and head room for the front and back seat passengers and the seats are very comfortable. As with most cars I have driven recently the infotainment screen dominates the dash. Naturally there is decent space in the boot and you get a ‘mini’ spare wheel, which is always appreciated.

Did I like it? Yes, it’s a decent effort. I drove a dark blue-coloured version, but then when I saw a picture of the red Tivoli it looked much better. As I have often said before on these pages colour makes a huge difference to everything in our lives.

Prices start at a very reasonable €19,995 for the 1.6 petrol, while the 1.6 diesel version I drove will cost you €21,495. I drove a manual version, but it’s also available in automatic in petrol and diesel. Road tax is only €190 in the diesel, while it’s €390 for the petrol.

Ssangyong has 12 dealers countrywide and Cashman’s Midleton are the only dealer in Cork.

I started with an Irish saying and will end with a Chinese one: ‘‘A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.’’ Welcome back to Ireland Ssangyong, the competition is fierce and naturally it will take time to gain a foothold in the Irish market. I think that maybe you may need more smaller cars to really win over the Irish motorists.

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Wave to Mary! 65-year-old Mary Nolan Hickey is running around the entire coast of the Island of Ireland to raise funds & awareness for the RNLI and is currently running the roads of West Cork.

Mary is the only woman to have completed every single Dublin Marathon (all 38 of them). She’s also completed the grueling Marathon des Sables in the Sahara Desert, known as the ‘toughest foot race on earth’.

To mark her 50th year involved in Athletics Mary is taking on her biggest challenge yet (even though she thought she’d already done that when completing the Dublin Marathon when she was over six months pregnant!) She wants to raise as much money as possible for the RNLI.

Mary started her epic journey in Arklow, Co. Wicklow, on New Year’s Day. She aims to cover up to 5000 kilometers, using coastal routes, over the next five months. She hopes to get back in time to get her first pension payment in June when she turns 66.

Mary will stop off at as many RNLI stations as possible, on her once in a lifetime adventure. As far as she knows no other woman has ever taken on this challenge.

Speaking about her journey Mary said:

“I wanted to prove that age not a barrier. Coming from a coastal town I have a deep affinity with our local RNLI station & volunteers and have huge admiration for the brave men and women who risk their lives to save lives at sea”.

Mary, who’s depending on the goodwill of communities along her route for accommodation, has been astounded by the response so far. “The support has been overwhelming,” she said. “I have met the most amazing and encouraging people along the way”.

To see more about Mary’s adventures, and to pinpoint her location today, check out her Facebook page - rnlilapofthemap2018.
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20th March, 2018  ·  


This Saturday the 10th March, will see some magically curious activity as local Bandon national schools compete in a Wizarding Harry Potter Quiz. The prize will be the beautiful Bandon Banshee Perpetual Cup.

As any Harry Potter enthusiast knows, Bandon has the unique honour of having a character named after the town. The Bandon Banshee, was referred to as the nemesis of Gilderoy Lockhart in the Chamber of Secrets. The book grossed €60 million in sales and was the 7th highest earning film of all time.

Locals, looking to enhance the town for young people, saw the quiz as an ideal way promote the connection. The universally absorbing book series brings young readers on a huge adventure of magic, adversity and triumph. It is also an exploration of loyalty and friendship, good and evil – so it is not only popular way to engage young people, it is a hugely positive connection.

Zoe Tennyson, one of the organisers said they were delighted with the response from schools who ran a qualifying quiz as part of World Book Day. On Saturday Bandon Town Hall will be transformed into Hogwarts Great Hall, with proceeds going Bandon Playground Group, and to cover costs of the event.

Bandon Books will be rewarding the winning team with vouchers to each of the five members. The Bandon Banshee, or Bean-sidhe na Bandaan Perpetual Cup will be hotly contested – but which school will the Banshee go to??

If you have any questions please call Marguerite McQuaid on 087 900 9494
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8th March, 2018  ·  

Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition 23 February 2018

The inaugural Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition will take place in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen this Friday 23rd February. As part of Engineers Week 2018, leaders and members of Ballineen Foróige Club have organised an exhibition which will showcase a diverse and exciting range of engineering projects that have been undertaken by members of the club over the last few weeks, with the aid of leaders and a number of local engineers.

With the aid of local pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, along with the support of STEAM Education, a UCC based company focused on promoting science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths subjects in primary schools, Ballineen Foróige has been engaging members and leaders in all things engineering over the last six weeks. From researching, designing, and prototyping a project based on local problems, to participating in various workshops on coding and careers in engineering, Ballineen Foróige have been extremely busy in preparation for the exhibition this coming Friday night.

On the night itself, Michael Loftus, Head of Engineering at CIT, Fintan Goold, Manager at Eli Lilly and All-Ireland Cork winning Footballer, along with Geraldine Coughlan of GCA Architects & Designers, a local business, will act as judges on the night, evaluating the different engineering projects and offering some advice to the members of the club. Also in attendance will be the CEO of Foróige Seán Campbell, along with a number of local councillors, TD’s and Senators.

Leading the team of Ballineen Foróige leaders organising the event, is Rebecca Dwyer, a bioprocess engineer at Eli Lilly. Rebecca recently became a leader in the club and says that Ballineen Foróige Young Engineer Exhibition 2018 “promises to be a fun, challenging and rewarding experience for all involved and we look forward to welcoming parents, relatives, friends and members of the public to the exhibition and film screening on the evening of Friday 23rd February.” Overall, there are twelve projects entered in the exhibition. One project, led by Cian Kennefick and Charlie Nolan, members of the starting out club, examines the possibility of installing speed ramps on the road near local primary school. Fourteen-year-old Charlie says he got involved in the project as it was something to do and it gets you thinking. Cian says the most exciting part of the project was the building of the prototypes.

Both Cian and Charlie, along with thirty other members of the club will display their projects this coming Friday 23 February in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen. Doors open at 8pm and the event runs until 10pm. All are welcome to attend, and admission is free. Catering, including tea and coffee, will be provided on the night.
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20th February, 2018  ·  

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Main course

17th February, 2018  ·  

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