First drive Suzuki Jimny
THE cult classic returns – it’s the all-new Suzuki Jimny. The previous (and third) generation spanned a decade and gained a deserved reputation for being brilliant off-road, incredibly reliable and cheap to buy as well. Now, there’s a new one. It may follow a similar platform – its chassis is still a ladder frame design, for example - but a variety of tweaks and touches have been implemented to make this Jimny just a little more grown-up, but no less bullet-proof. We headed out to Frankfurt to see if it can match its predecessor’s form.
The fundamentals remain delightfully simple. And while other small off-roaders choose electronics to help when the terrain gets sticky, the Jimny still offers a proper four-wheel-drive system, with transfer gear and three-link rigid axle suspension.
There’s a new powertrain – more on this shortly - and while the new Jimny is actually shorter than the car it replaces, it’s able to offer up better interior space and passenger legroom thanks to an increase in the front and rear seat hip points. All of these features mean that while the new Jimny is no less capable off-road, it’s a little easier to live with.
Underneath the Jimny’s short, snub nose beats a 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with 101bhp. In regular modes, it runs in rear-wheel-drive, sending power to the wheels through a five-speed manual box (an automatic will be available from launch too).
The whole drivetrain can be switched into
The redoubtable Suzuki Jimny will tackle terrain likely to leave other so-called off-roaders floundering