M OTO R I N G | N E W S BY N I C K F L E TC H E R
R O A D T E S T: S U Z U K I J I M N Y S Z 5 A L L G R I P Suzuki’s tiny four-wheel-drive Jimny has been around for many years in virtually unchanged form but now there is an allnew version which looks less cute and more formidable, writes NICK FLETCHER. New Jimny is still very small but has more purposeful styling and looks quite cool, an important element in an imageconscious market. It still has selectable 4WD with low-ratio transfer box which means it is amazing capable off road, often able to venture into terrain that larger 4WD models cannot cope with.
is very well equipped with automatic airconditioning, cruise control, digital radio and CD player, Bluetooth, LED headlights, rear privacy glass, alloy wheels, and sat-nav with touchscreen and smartphone link. Safety features include stability control, lane departure warning, hill descent control and tyre pressure monitoring. The cabin is narrow but functional, with good dashboard layout and comfortable seating. The two rear seats will accommodate adults but luggage space is then very limited at just 85 litres. But with
Powered by a 1.5 litre 100 hp petrol engine and 5-speed manual gearbox (there is a 4-speed auto option), the Jimny has a 0-60 mph time of 12 seconds and top speed of 90 mph. Average fuel economy is 41.5 mpg and emissions are 154 g/km.
The Jimny can double as a neat versatile rural vehicle with strong off-road and towing ability, or as a practical and nimble city car with eye-catching cachet. On tarmac, ride quality is firm but quite acceptable and the handling is agile thanks revised steering which gives much-improved feedback and a greater sense of control. I found the 4-speed auto transmission rather over-busy but most buyers will go for the slick manual gearbox. The previous Jimny had a lot of friends and this updated and enhanced version will win many more. It looks good, drives well, and there is nothing truly comparable or as capable at the price.
Prices start at £15,499, though my top-spec SZ5 Allgrip test version cost £17,999 and
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the rear seats down flat, the load space of 377 litres is larger than in the previous Jimny. There is very little cabin stowage space – a tiny glovebox, very slim doorpockets and a couple of cup holders is about all you get.
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