It's no secret that I have a yearning for one of Suzuki's awesome little Jimny models, in any colour or year model. They're just that good (well, depending on what you want out of a mini 4x4). There's only ever been one variant available in SA, but Suzuki SA just announced that the automatic version is now an option too. Engine specs remain the same, but with the auto 'box in play it will make 4x4 excursions a little easier for those new to the game. An auto is easier to control over obstacles and through anything the wild would chuck in front of the car.
Added to the automatic option, Suzuki says the Jimny has been updated with "a raft of changes and upgrades to both the exterior and interior, while an equipment upgrade has also been introduced." The most obvious change is the new 15-inch wheels in a dark silver finish, that when added to the two new colours offered, Bison Brown and Khaki Pearl Metallic, make for a really cool new look.
The changes stretch to the interior, the highlight being an all-new instrument cluster. As with the old one, the cluster features main dials for speed and revs, but there's now a third intersecting instrument hosting a new digital display. I'll bet any amount that current Jimny owners are already phoning their local dealership to find out if this can be retrofitted to existing models. I know that's what I'd be doing. The new display includes fuel tank level and engine temperature readouts along with a digital clock, an ambient temperature display, gear and transfer case indicators, a fuel economy readout and a trip meter. The interior changes also include upgraded seat upholstery that's aimed at boosting comfort and durability, while a new steering wheel design has also been introduced. The comprehensively equipped interior includes remote central locking, a CD receiver sound system, electric windows and air-conditioning. Safety features include dual front airbags, head restraints, inertia reel seatbelts, and ABS anti-lock brakes. Basically everything you need.
The 1.3i MT Retails for R219 900 and the new 1.3 AT will retails for R234 900. Both the manual and automatic transmission-equipped versions of the Jimny are covered by a three-year/100 000 km warranty, as well as a four-year/60 000 km service plan. For more, head on over to www.suzukiauto.co.za.