Compact, practical and superb value for money, the Suzuki Jimny is a 4×4 for all – and it’s coming to India. It is fun to drive and backs up its chunky looks with honest performance off the beaten track as well as in the cut and thrust of urban traffic.
Jimny received some minor updates at the end of 2012 which included a new front bumper, grille and bonnet design incorporating a central air intake as well as repositioned front fog lamps. These updates resulted in the Jimny growing in length – but only by 30mm, ensuring Jimny remains the most compact SUV on sale in the UK. Further refinements in November 2014 include a new design instrument cluster that includes a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) for added safety as well as a Gear Shift Indicator (GSI) to help the driver keep fuel consumption to a minimum. The 2015 model is also equipped with ESC (Electronic Stability Control) as standard.
Jimny has a neat and practical look and since sales began in 1998 it has accumulated a loyal following of repeat customers who enjoy a quirky alternative to a supermini or crossover SUV. The Jimny exceeds expectations off road whilst still being more than capable in any urban area, ideal for customers who want the best of both worlds.
The all-alloy 16 valve 1.3 litre engine benefits from variable valve timing, ensuring lively performance, and strong fuel economy. Maximum output is 85PS, with 81lbft of torque delivered at 4,100 rpm; a flat torque curve means near maximum torque is delivered from as low as 2,500 rpm, giving Jimny the kind of flexible driving character and pulling power that are integral to a successful SUV.
There are clear benefits in terms of fuel efficiency and exhaust emissions: with the manual transmission model returning an official 39.8mpg in combined cycle driving (38.7mpg for the automatic); respective CO2 outputs are 162 and 167g/km.
Inside, SZ3 models are equipped with fabric whilst both models in the range get new design front and rear headrests. ISOFIX child seat anchorages are fitted as standard across the range. The youthful, ‘wheel in each corner’ styling has helped Jimny develop a loyal following, appreciative of its characterful appearance. It’s neat, practical look is enhanced by curving body panels, body-side protective mouldings and bumpers, all colour coded to match or contrast with the paint finish. Integral roof rails emphasise the roof contours, and can be teamed with a range of accessories for secure carrying of items such as skis, bikes and surfboards.
Jimny offers a good level of standard equipment across two trim levels: SZ3 and SZ4. The entry level SZ3 models include the following specification; front fog lamps, roof rails, remote central locking, ABS with EBD, push button selectable four-wheel drive with high and low ratios and automatic freewheeling hubs.
SZ4 models add more specification as standard including air conditioning; Dark Silver 15-inch alloy wheels, latest design seat trim with ‘Jimny’ badging to front seat facings, Black and Silver-finish roof rails, leather steering wheel trim, chrome plated interior door handles and rear privacy glass. Smart in the city, tough in the rough With its practical character, compact size and high-value price tag, Jimny stands as an ideal choice for those motorists looking to explore the adventure of 4×4 motoring for the first time.
Its rugged and distinctive styling, separate body-on-chassis construction, all-round coil suspension and Drive Select 4×4 system equip it to tackle much tougher driving conditions than many “soft-roader” SUVs. All body panels are made of high-tensile galvanised steel and are mounted to the separate chassis, which provides a rigid basis for the whole vehicle. Jimny’s firmly planted stance gives it a presence that belies its compact dimensions.
An overall length of 3,675mm, width of 1,600mm, a high driving position and a tight 9.8m turning circle allow it to be manoeuvred about town and parked with ease in tight spaces. The driving position is high and commands an excellent all-round view. All on board enjoy plenty of headroom, increasing the sense of spaciousness created by the large glass area. Rearward visibility is aided by large, electrically operated door mirrors and a spare wheel mounted low on the rear door. Access to the rear is made easier thanks to a front passenger seat that slides well forward, wide-opening doors and low sills. Rear seat passengers are provided with armrests, storage for small items and a cup holder. Additional cup holders are located in the centre console between the front seats. The rear seat backs are split 50:50 and can be reclined and also fully folded forward to open up the luggage area when required.
Since its launch in the UK in 1998, Jimny’s separate, full box-section chassis has established a strong reputation for durability and toughness. The rigid front and rear axles are attached to the chassis by a three-link arrangement, with an anti-roll bar fitted at the front. This well-proven design, controlled by long-travel coil springs and gas dampers, is configured to cope with the demands of rough surfaces, while ensuring a refined and compliant ride on conventional roads. Suzuki’s Drive Select 4×4 system features a transfer box with high or low ratio four-wheel drive.
The freewheeling front hubs are engaged automatically and four-wheel drive can be selected on the move while travelling in a straight line at speeds of up to 62 mph. Jimny is fundamentally designed to cope with off-road conditions with 190mm ground clearance, approach and departure angles of 34° and 46° respectively, and a ramp angle of 31°. Jimny’s chassis offers extreme rigidity in the event of a collision and is designed to absorb energy from all directions in a controlled manner. Progressive, reassuring braking performance is provided by large front discs and rear drums, supported by ABS with EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution). Airbags for driver and front passenger, side impact protection beams and height adjustable front seat belt anchorages are all standard, and the powerful multi-reflector halogen headlamps are complemented by the front bumper-mounted fog lamps.
A wide range of Suzuki Genuine Accessories are available with recent additions to the range including a chromed front grill trim which can be complemented with matching trims for the front headlamps and door handles to give a more pronounced presence on the road. More sports focused customers can select a body coloured rear upper spoiler and aluminium running board set as well as a polished stainless steel muffler extension and three different options of alloy wheels. With drivers looking for added practicality from their Jimny, Suzuki also offers a detachable tow bar, cycle carrier and a multi roof rack for increased load capacity.
Additional exterior accessory options include both side and bumper protection sets and a choice of moulded or flexible mud flap sets. A four piece carpet mat or rubber mat set and centre armrest with an integrated storage compartment add to the highly regarded driver and passenger comfort in the Jimny. Also featuring in the Suzuki Genuine Accessories range is a partition grille, which is suitable for use as a dog guard. This can be combined with a large size, robust load liner to enable owners to further enhance practicality and protect the interior.