Cheap to run, almost impossible to break and capable of taking you just about anywhere a set of wheels can go, the Suzuki Jimny long ago became the utilitarian 4×4 for cash-strapped off-road enthusiasts.
Now the Japanese carmaker has revealed its latest Jimny 4×4 for 2019 – the first new version for two decades – and it might just be the cutest new car of the year.
With its stretched grille, cheery oval headlamps and squared-off wheel arches, the new Suzuki Jimny looks like it could be the love child of a Hummer and the equally battle-ready Mercedes G-Wagen.
Cutest car of the year? This is the new Suzuki Jimny SUV that will be arriving in the UK in 2019
To say the old Jimny is a little long in the tooth is an understatement.
It’s remained pretty much unchanged since it went on sale in 1998 and would probably flunk the existing crash tests worse than a GCSE student with a severe case of gaming disorder.
Fortunately, fans of the budget-priced off-roader – which include hire car firms across mainland Europe who stock them in huge numbers for holidaymakers – will be glad to see this updated version.
And they might be surprised by the no-frills 4x4s shrunken resemblance to a Hummer.
The Jimny, which originally went into production in its earliest form in the 1970s, has garnered a decent-size fan club.
In 2019 Suzuki will usher in this fourth generation car, which has already been confirmed for sale in the UK.
These are the first images of the updated SUV, and we’re already impressed by the boxy – and quite frankly adorable – looks.
The 2019 Suzuki Jimny does have a striking resemblance to the hilariously huge American Hummer vehicles
The two-door off-road Suzuki Jimny will be updated for the first time in 21 years when the 4th generation car goes on sale next year
There’s no question that it could pass as the offspring of the comically enormous Hummer range of military vehicles.
The American army favourite also became immensely popular with celebrities in the nineties and naughties, with David Beckham, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Chris Eubank all owning an H1, H2 or H3 at some point.
You know the ones – they’re often converted into stretch limos, painted pink and crammed with alcohol-fuelled hen parties.
The previous generation Suzuki Jimny has been on sale in the UK since 1998 and has barely had an update in two decades
The Suzuki Jimny has garnered itself a decent-size fan base, thanks to its go-anywhere capability, low running costs and indestructible build quality. Suzuki has yet to confirm if it will sell a convertible model like the previous generation car pictured
The Hummer is based on the military vehicles used by the US army, but in modern UK is often seen as a bright pink stretch limo used for hen parties and school proms
We think the 2019 Suzuki Jimny looks like the love child of a Hummer (left) and a Mercedes G-Wagen (right)
The new Jimny comes in a squared-off body with about as many curves as a door frame.
This, combined with the jacked-up body and round headlights, also strikes a likeness to the Mercedes G-Class (aka G-Wagen), which has a similar military-bred background to the Hummer.
Suzuki says the new-for-2019 car will continue to use a basic ladder-frame chassis, uncomplicated three-link rigid axle suspension and part-time four wheel drive to keep production – and purchase – costs as low as possible.
It will also retain the raised cab, barely-there wheelbase and minimal overhangs at each corner.
That means it should be able to cope with any hilly incline or mountain decent you throw at it and bounce over even the most boulder-riddled terrain.
Like the long-in-the-tooth Suzuki Jimny being replaced, the new one will be as straight edged as a door frame and have just three doors and two rear passenger seats
Like this older version, the new 2019 Suzuki Jimny will have a spare wheel on the boot door and rear lights sitting low against the bumper
But while it looks like it will be able to tackle every off-road obstacle imaginable, the long-travel suspension hints at the small SUV having all the cornering prowess of a bouncy castle on wheels.
Inside, very little has been done to overhaul the shape of the dashboard found in the two-decade old version it replaces.
However, it will be updated with a touchscreen infotainment system, chunkier switches and fresh-faced instrument cluster maintained in a superbly retro boxy housing.
Suzuki says the new-for-2019 car will continue to use a basic ladder-frame chassis, uncomplicated three-link rigid axle suspension to keep costs as low as possible
Inside there’s new switch gear, a touchscreen system and a fresh steering wheel. The retro boxy dashboard is retained for the 2019 Suzuki Jimny
There will be plenty of personalisation options to make your Suzuki Jimny different from the rest. Basic models will be sold with steel wheels while higher-spec versions – like these pictured – will have alloy wheels
With Suzuki unwilling to expand on the previous-generation’s miniature dimensions, the boot is likely to be as dinky as the one we know now and just two rear seats will be offered instead of a bench to sit three passengers.
There’s no word yet on the engines it will use, but we expect to see it come with one of two petrol engines: either the long-developed 1.2-litre Dualjet motor or the latest 1.0-litre Boosterjet powerplant that’s crammed under the bonnet of the latest Swift supermini.
Thanks to the modest revolutionary touches, the robust Jimny will stay true to its cheap and cheerful values. Therefore you shouldn’t expect to see official prices rise much further above the £12,999 fee you have to pay for Suzuki’s compact SUV today.
That’s a refreshing thought in a world where other car makers are competing to offer the fastest, most luxurious, and most expensive 4x4s ever.
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