New Suzuki Jimny detailed as the best lightweight off-road 4x4
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Suzuki UK are the first outfit to reveal full details about the fourth generation Jimny, touting the mini SUV as the 'one-and-only small, lightweight 4WD vehicle.'
Yet Suzuki has designed the all-new model with functionality and practicality in mind for both on- and off-road driving, while the Jimny's exterior appearance has been shaped by the model's 48-year history.
The design is simple and practical with a square body, flat 'clamshell' bonnet and upright A-pillars for easy manoeuvrability in any situation.
Subtle design changes have been made to improve 4x4 credentials, too. Drip rails on the roof edges prevent water entering the cabin when opening and closing doors and the extended wheel arches give the small SUV a tougher look while providing protection from stone chips.
The design also incorporates design elements from previous models like round headlamps, independent indicators and vertical openings in the front grille.
Under the retro-body, the new Jimny is constructed on a ladder frame with a new 'x-member' and two new cross members for added strength and torsional rigidity.
Suspension front and rear is a 3-link rigid axle setup with coil spring, allowing for an ample approach angle of 37 degrees, ramp breakover angle of 28 degrees and departure angle of 49 degrees without scarping the SUVs bumpers or underbody.
All Jimny models are fitted with a part-time 4WD system which can be switched from 2H, 4H and 4L modes with a shift lever connected directly to the transfer gear.
For the UK market, the new Jimny range will be powered exclusively by an all-new 1.5-litre naturally aspirated 4-cylinder engine. Although capacity is bigger than the 1.3-litre engine it replaces, the new engine is dimensionally smaller and 15 per cent lighter, while also offering more power, torque and better fuel efficiency.
The new engine produces 75kW of power and 130Nm of torque, enough to propel the 1.4-tonne Jimny around trails and onto a top speed of 140km/h with a 4-speed auto, or 145km/h with a 5-speed manual gearbox. If you felt the need.
Suzuki describe the cabin as 'straightforward, piratical and down-to-earth' - everything the Jimny stands for. The instrument cluster remains analogue, but Suzuki have added their latest audio system, Bluetooth phone connectivity and 7-inch touch screen infotainment unit on higher grades.
The Jimny also gains up-to-date safety features like Dual Sensor Brake Support (alerts and applies brakes when it senses a crash), lane departure warning, high beam assist and traffic sign recognition.
In the back, the rear row can fold flat creating 377-litres of luggage space, 53 more than its predecessor.
The UK range will be available in eight colours including two newly developed hues exclusive to the Jimny, bright 'Kinetic Yellow' and low-visibility 'Jungle Green'.
Suzuki New Zealand is expect to announce local Jimny line-up details before the end of the year.
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