JIMNY CONNERS (some text hidden)
By Jonathan Crouch
Suzuki's little Jimny LCV is rather unique, a van version of one of our very favourite small SUVs. Jonathan Crouch drives it.
Ten Second Reviewword count: 47
Good news if you thought the chirpy, endearing little Suzuki Jimny small SUV was dead. It lives on in this commercial form as the Jimny LCV. But all the things we loved about the fourth generation Jimny stay intact. It's the van you never knew you wanted.
Backgroundword count: 155
Like us, you can probably think of quite a few cars that left production far too soon. In the modern era, that's usually because they fail to meet ever-more stringent emissions regulations and such a casualty was the fourth generation Suzuki Jimny small SUV, which launched here at the end of 2018 but stayed on sale in the UK for only 18 months. Turned out its modest 1.5-litre petrol engine was dragging down Suzuki's model range 95g/km CO2 fleet average, so it had to go - and that was that. Or so we thought. But then someone at Suzuki discovered the 'N1 Light Commercial' vehicle category that covers LCVs under 3.5 tonnes. Models of that sort sold here classified as vans don't contribute to their manufacturers' CO2 fleet average. Other parts of the globe already wanted an LCV-orientated Jimny; why not sell that here? Hence in 2021, the launch of this model, the Jimny LCV.
Driving Experienceword count: 231
Let's get this straight: if you've no intention of ever going off road, don't bother with this Suzuki. You'll hate it within the first half mile. The low speed ride crashes over bumps and the tall, slab-sided shape rolls its way through the bends. To be fair, this fourth generation version is better in this regard than the pre-2018-era model but that's not saying much. On the plus side, there's only 1,090kg of mass to roll about and the steering does give some sort of idea as to what's going on beneath you. There's a 5-speed manual gearbox and power comes from a 1.5-litre normally aspirated petrol unit offering 101hp and a top speed of just 90mph. Off road of course, things are very different. It's no exaggeration to say that this little Suzuki can get to places that larger, pricier more sophisticated SUVs couldn't think about. Light weight will do that for you. Suzuki's mission statement with this model line - to make 'the one-and-only, small, lightweight four-wheel-drive vehicle' - remains credible thanks to the engineering that lies beneath that bodywork. You're offered 2WD, 4WD and 4WD with a low mode. And you get a ladder frame chassis, three-link rigid axle coil spring suspension and four-wheel drive. To it has been added extra tech such as Hill Hold and Hill Descent Control, emergency brake support and various driver assistance systems.
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