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4×4 of the Year

front of a jimny

4×4 of the Year

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A Modern Retro 4×4

The Suzuki Jimny has been named 4×4 of the Year 2019 by 4×4 and Pick Up magazine, beating such prestigious rivals as the Range Rover and the Jeep Wrangler.

The Jimny has gone from unpretentious, economical beginnings to a great modern all-rounder to suit any potential mud-plugger on a budget. With classic aesthetics, the Jimny scratches that retro itch that a lot of moderns fail to reach. Land Rover pulling the Defender created a gap in the market, and leaks showing the unreleased new version have left a lot of 4×4 fans disappointed. Almost in response, it seems, Suzuki has produced a charming alternative.

First Generation

The original Jimny was launched back in 1970 and has always stayed true to its roots as a cheap and cheerful off-road utility vehicle. Weighing just 590 kg a 360cc 25bhp miniscule engine got the original Jimny up to 47 mph.

suzuki jimney 1st gen

Second Generation

The second generation Jimny, also known as the SJ30, came with a new 3-cylinder engine. A 550cc and 660cc were both exported worldwide. The new revised model broke the world record for the highest altitude attained by a 4 wheel drive vehicle, hitting 21,942 feet above sea level heading up Ojos del Salado. The record was previously held by the Jeep Wrangler, which had left a ‘Jeep parking only’ sign on the volcano. The two Suzuki drivers brought it back down with them.

suzuki jimny 2nd gen

Third Generation

At the Tokyo Motor Show in 1997 the third generation was unveiled with a much more modern look from Suzuki. New features included an improved 1.3 80 bhp engine with a drive change between 2 wheel drive and 4 wheel drive, together with greater in car technology including DAB radio, tyre pressure monitors and remote central locking.

suzuki jimny 3rd gen

Back to the Present Jimny

With the fourth generation of the Jimny out this year, the award for this mini off roader was well overdue and in our books certainly deserved.

back of a jimny

For more information on classic 4x4s, read our Vital Stats on the Land Rover Series: here

Image Sources
  • TTTNIS via Wikipedia Commons
  • Jason Lawrence via Flckr
  • Sermac.gr via Wikipedia Commons
  • Y.Leclercq via Flckr
  • TTTNIS via Wikipedia Commons