The long-awaited Suzuki Jimny off road SUV will finally be launched later this year. Mr. Shashank Srivastava, a senior executive director at Maruti Suzuki just confirmed this in an interview to IndiaToday. Mr Srivastava said that the decision to launch the all-new Jimny in India was taken after the tremendous response the company got for the 4X4 SUV at the Auto Expo of 2018, where it was showcased to measure show-goer enthusiasm.
Even as you’re reading this, Maruti Suzuki is firming up a marketing plan for the Suzuki Jimny, which will be the spiritual successor of the legendary Maruti Gypsy. Notably, the Maruti Gypsy was discontinued a couple of years ago following tightening emission and crash safety norms. While the Gypsy was sold in both soft-top and hard-top trims, the Suzuki Jimny sold in India will be offered in only hard-top trim.
The Suzuki Jimny sold abroad uses a 1.5 liter-4 cylinder, naturally aspirated K-Series petrol engine with 104 Bhp of peak power and 138 Nm of peak torque. 5 speed manual and 4 speed torque converter automatic gearboxes are on offer in the ladder frame equipped SUV, which gets a four wheel drive transfer case with 4-low and -4-high modes.
A three door form factor, with four seats are on offer in the international version of the Jimny. This is similar to what the Mahindra Thar sold in India gets. While there was talk of the India-spec Jimny getting a five door, long wheelbase form factor, it’s unlikely to pan out given the fact that developing a specific body-type for the Indian market won’t be justified given the low volumes an off-roader like the Jimny is likely to garner. The current international-spec Jimny’s dimensions – 3,850mm in length, 1,645mm in width, 1,730mm in height and 2,550 mm in wheelbase – are likely to be carried over to the Indian version.
Known as an exceptional off roader thanks to its short wheelbase, light weight and compact dimensions, the Suzuki Jimny will be the most hardcore SUV sold by Maruti Suzuki. In terms of price positioning, nothing much is known at this moment. Given the fact that the Jimny is a niche product, Maruti Suzuki may choose to charge a premium for the off road SUV.
In terms of competition, the Suzuki Jimny will square off against the likes of the Mahindra Thar and the Force Gurkha. Both the Thar and Gurkha are much larger, considerably heavier and more powerful than the Jimny. Given the fact that the Jimny is a smaller 4X4, a sharp price tag could make it quite popular in India, where the Maruti Gypsy had and still has a considerable fan following.